Chinese authorities have intensified their monitoring of activist Ai Xiaoming after she had nude photos of herself taken to protest the sexual abuse of children, the South China Morning Post said Wednesday.

Since Ai made the photos public on May 31, numerous security guards have been keeping her house under surveillance in the southern city of Guangzhou and her telephone and Internet connections have been cut, the Hong Kong daily said.

The 60-year-old professor at Sun Yat-sen University has also been suspended from teaching classes and cannot receive friends in her home.

Ai said when she made the photos, in which on her naked chest is written a message in Mandarin, that she made the decision because "in an era in which it is prohibited to use posters to express our points of view, I can only make a statement using my body."

Her photos sparked a huge commotion among faculty and students at the university and quickly spread across the social networks and the Internet.

She defends her nakedness and urges the parents of minor children who have been abused to "hold your head up with pride," as the message on her body declares.

"When our children are kidnapped, poisoned, sexually assaulted and murdered, what should the adults of this nation do to protect them?" the message continues.

Ai said she was driven to speak out by the case of the alleged rape of six students ages 12-13 by two of their teachers at a school on Hainan island.

The six girls disappeared on May 8 and were found two days later at different places on the island in a semidrugged state. The two suspects were arrested, but neither of them has gone to trial yet.

Ai said that the case shows that there are gaps in the Chinese judicial system regarding sexual abusers - including reduced prison terms - and also points up the lack of education needed to protect minors. EFE