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Community members call for support for indicted SIU professor

The university has placed Xiao on leave pending an investigation into the issue.

Community members and SIU faculty are calling on the university to stop an investigation into Professor Mingqing Xiao, who is facing indictment under the Trump administration's China Initiative.

Opponents say the China Initiative unfairly targets Asian researchers and students.

Kara Benyas, a friend of Xiao's, says the work he was doing in China was to recruit students for SIU. She wants the university to end it's investigation into Xiao and publicly support him.

Benyas also says she would like the Department of Justice to end the China Initiative and reconsider Xiao's prosecution.

"In Ming's case, there's no allegations of espionage or intellectual property theft, which is how the China Initiative was initially designed," Benyas said.

The SIU Faculty Senate will consider a resolution in support of Xiao at their December 14th meeting.

The university released a statement saying Xiao has been placed on administrative leave, pending the university’s investigation into the issue.

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