China Human Rights Briefing  June 16-21, 2011

Highlights

  • Activist Yao Lifa Goes Missing After Increased Harassment: CHRD has learned that democracy activist Yao Lifa (姚立法), from Qianjiang City, Hubei Province, went missing on June 20. Yao, who has been advising voters and independent candidates as the country conducts local People’s Congress elections, has been under residential surveillance since February 20. Harassment and limitations on his freedom were ramped up just days before he disappeared. 

  •  Jiangxi Woman Forcibly Sterilized After Exposing Illegal Land Requisition: CHRD has learned that Zhang Julan (张菊兰), a villager from Jiangxi Province, has been hospitalized since mid-May following a brutal assault by local police and forced tubal ligation. After the procedure, Zhang refused to consent to authorities’ demands, which included signing an agreement to demolish her house and also saying she retroactively agreed to the ligation.

ContentsArbitraryDetention

EnforcedDisappearance

Harassmentof Activists’ Family Members

Tortureand Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment andPunishment

Arbitrary Detention Updates on Detentions andDisappearances Related to the “Jasmine Revolution”Crackdown On the morning of Friday,June 17, Chongqing human rights lawyer ZhengJianwei (郑建伟) was again prohibitedby procuratorial authorities in Suining City, SichuanProvince, from visiting imprisoned activist ChenWei (陈卫). Zheng went to the SuiningProcuratorate that day with Chen’s wife, Wang Xiaoyan (王晓燕), but after Zheng submitted case materials,procuratorial staff said that his attorney’s licensewas invalid and they refused to allow him to see Chen.Zheng argued with the staff but was ultimately unableto meet his client. Back in April, Suining police and otherofficers handling the case also prevented Zheng fromseeing Chen, making the recent incident the secondtime authorities have obstructedthe process of providing Chen the legal counselnecessary to ensure his right to a fair trial.Chen was formally detained on February 21 on suspicionof “inciting subversion of state power” (煽动颠覆国家政权罪), and his case was submitted for prosecutionon May 26. (CHRD)[i] Beijing Activist WangYuqin Given 14 Days of Administrative Detention WangYuqin (王玉琴), a Beijing activist,was given 14 days of administrative detention forpetitioning and other actions taken on behalf of herhusband, Yang Qiuyu (杨秋雨), who is serving two years ofRe-education through Labor (RTL) as part of the“Jasmine Revolution” crackdown. Wang, who suffers fromhigh blood pressure, was taken into custody in theafternoon of June 16 by police officers from theDongcheng branch of the Beijing Municipal PublicSecurity Bureau (PSB) and then taken to the JingshanPolice Station. Later that evening, Wang was informedshe would be sent to administrative detention. It isbelieved that police may also have detained her inconnection with the run-up to the “sensitive” occasionof the 90th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Partyon July 1.   Wang’s husband, Yang, wastaken into custody on March 6 and criminally detainedon March 7 on suspicion of “creating a disturbance” (寻衅滋事).On April 14, Wang received notice from the DongchengPSB branch that Yang had been sent to RTL. (CivilRights and Livelihood Watch)[ii] Enforced Disappearance Democracy Activist YaoLifa Missing After Recent Period of IncreasedHarassment CHRD has learned that, onJune 20, democracy activist Yao Lifa (姚立法), from Qianjiang City, Hubei Province,went missing. According to Yao’s wife, hedid not come home that afternoon after getting offwork at the school where he teaches. He cannot bereached through his mobile telephone, and variousefforts to contact him have failed. Yao, who has beenincreasingly harassed of late and under residentialsurveillance since February 20, has usually been takenhome after work around 6 p.m. by individuals assignedto monitor him. Both public security and schoolauthorities have limited his freedom due to concernsover his advising of voters and independent candidatesas the country conducts local People’s Congresselections. It is possible that authorities have rampedup harassment of Yao because of a recent phone call hereceived from a U.S. Embassy employee who wished toset up a meeting with him, and since some electoralcandidates may try to seek him out. The most recentrestrictions placed on Yao involve his workplace,where since June 16 he had been prohibited fromanswering his phone, sending text messages, andtalking to others in his office. In addition, severalwindows in Yao’s home were smashed in the middle ofthe night by unknown persons on June 18. (CHRD)[iii] Xinjiang PetitionerRepresenting Hundreds of Households Kidnapped inBeijing Xinjiang petitioner ChenZhixin (陈志新) has been missingsince June 10, when he was knocked unconscious andabducted by police officers who had been tailing himin Beijing. Chen and 16 other citizens had gone to thecapital as representatives of 398 households ofHappiness Garden apartment complex in Shihezi City,Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. They were demandingcentral authorities resolve problems of real estatecollusion and fraud by Party officials and landdevelopers that had resulted in cheating residents outof their housing property rights.    According to grouprepresentatives, Shihezi officers had tracked them toBeijing in early June. On June 7, representatives ChenZhixin, Gao Keyuan (高克远), Shi Hongmei (师红梅), Hou Baoshan (候保善), and Sun Lanying (孙兰英) were waiting for a meeting at theCentral Commission for Discipline Inspection—chargedwith rooting out corruption and malfeasance amongParty cadres—when more than 10 individualsappeared and tried to abduct some of them, andpressured them to drop their efforts. They were ableto escape, but on the afternoon of June 10, Chen wentwith the group to the State Bureau for Letters andVisits and then went off alone to fetch materials, andhe has been out of contact ever since. Witnesses havereported seeing plainclothes police surrounding Chenon that day, and that police knocked him unconscious,blindfolded him, and drove him away. (Human RightsCampaign in China)[iv]Harassment ofActivists’ Family Members Police Monitor ZengJinyan, Wife of Hu Jia, Ahead of His Release On June 20, Zeng Jinyan (曾金燕) indicated via Twitter that eightindividuals had escorted her away the previous dayfrom the Beijing airport after she arrived fromShenzhen, temporarily putting her out of contact. Shealso wrote that she was able to meet Hu Jia (胡佳)in prison. CHRD believes that she was met at theairport by public security police and taken to theBeijing Municipal Prison to see Hu before being senthome, where she was probably put under surveillance.So that her 3-year-old daughter will be sparedresidential surveillance—which Hu Jia is very likelyto be placed under when he gets out of prison—Zeng hastold friends that she intends to leave the child withher family in Shenzhen. In her Twitter messages, Zengremarked that the incident at the airport may portendwhat her life will normally be like from now on. Shealso wrote that, during her visit with Hu, sheencouraged him to take care of himself as his sentencenears its scheduled completion on June 26, when Zengplans to go to the prison to meet him. (CHRD) Police Assault Wife ofDemocracy Activist Xu Wanping as She Tries toVisit Him in Prison CHRDhas learned from Chen Xianying (陈贤英), the wife of Chongqing dissident XuWanping (许万平), that she was beatenand kicked by prison police officers on June 16 whenshe and their child went to visit Xu at Yuzhou Prisonin Chongqing Municipality. In order to escape from thesun, the child sought a shady area on the prisongrounds to rest. Personnel from prison managementappeared and told Chen that their presence wasaffecting their work, and for the next two hours keptChen and the child at the prison gate in the strongmidday sun. They were then taken to a police pavilionnext to the prison gate and about half-an-hour later,five or six uniformed and plainclothes police officersentered, and they began to insult Chen and the child.Chen tried in vain to explain the situation and beggedthem to stop their abuse. The officers then beat andkicked her; when they paused for a moment, she wasable to call for an ambulance. The officers werepreparing to beat her again when the ambulancearrived. Chen spoke with CHRD en route to thehospital, and said that her whole body was in pain,she felt weak and dizzy, and her chest was tight.(CHRD)[v] Xu Wanping was a worker activist inChongqing during the pro-democracy demonstrations in1989, and has spent much of the past two decades inprison, mostly due to his efforts to establish theChina Action Party and a local branch of the ChinaDemocracy Party. He is now serving a 12-year sentencefor “subversion of state power” (颠覆国家政权罪). Torture and OtherCruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment andPunishment Jiangxi Woman ForciblySterilized as Punishment for Exposing Illegal LandRequisition ZhangJulan (张菊兰), from PingchuanVillage, Hexia Town, in Xinyu City, Jiangxi Province,was violently beaten and then forced to undergo tuballigation in May after exposing illegal landrequisition by local officials. The 45-year-old Zhangreportedly is still in a hospital trying to recoverfrom her physical ordeal. At 3 p.m. on May 17, Zhangwas among 10 villagers who went to the town governmentbuilding to look for the mayor and discuss the use ofillegally requisitioned land. Government staff thenbrought over more than 10 individuals, including stafffrom the Hexia Family Planning Station and some thugs,who stormed the mayor’s office. They violently struckand kicked Zhang and took her away to the familyplanning station, where tubal ligation surgery wasforcibly performed on her after she refused to giveconsent. On the night after the surgery, the mayor, HuXiaoyang (胡小阳), and family planningofficers tried to force Zhang to sign an agreement todemolish her house, admit that a birth certificatelisting her two children (twins) had been falsified,and to say that she had retroactively agreed to theligation. Zhang refused all these demands. Since May19, she has been hospitalized for medical treatmentfor injuries she sustained, including numbness in herarms and legs, bouts of unconsciousness, headaches,back pain, and painful wounds. (CHRD)[vi]   Editors of this issue:Victor Clemens and Renee Xia Follow us on Twitter: @CHRDnetNews updates from CHRD [i] “Chen Wei Case Submitted toProcuratorate, Attorney Again Prevented from MeetingHim,” (四川陈卫案已移交检察院,律师前往会见再次遇阻),June 17, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_8874.html; “News Flash: Suining,Sichuan Rights Activist Chen Wei CriminallyDetained” (快讯:四川遂宁维权人士陈卫被刑事拘留),February 22, 2011, http://boxun.com/hero/201102/chrd/9_1.shtml   [ii] “Beijing Rights DefenseActivist Wang Yuqin Given 14 Days’ AdministrativeDetention,” (北京维权人士王玉琴被行政拘留十四天), June 16, 2011, http://www.msguancha.com/Article/ShowArticle.asp?ArticleID=14344; Individuals Affected bythe Crackdown Following Call for “JasmineRevolution,” June 17, 2011 (updated), http://chrdnet.org/2011/04/15/jasmine_crackdown/,  [iii] “ChineseElections Expert Yao Lifa Goes Missing,” (中国选举专家姚立法先生失踪), June20, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_8197.html; “Several Windows SmashedOvernight at Home of Elections Expert Yao Lifa,” (选举专家姚立法家中深夜被数次砸破窗户), June 18, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_4437.html; “Qianjiang GroupProhibits Yao Lifa from Using Phone, Talking WithOthers,” (潜江小组会议禁止姚立法接打电话及与人交谈),June 16, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_7846.html; “Elections Expert YaoLifa Subjected to Restrictions on Personal LibertyAfter Call from U.S. Embassy,” (选举专家姚立法接美国使馆电话后被限制人身自由), June 12, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_12.html  [iv] Xinjiang Rights DefenseActivist Chen Zhixin Kidnapped in Beijing, FateUnknown,” (新疆维权人士陈志新在京遇袭劫持生死不明),June 15, 2011, http://rightscampaign.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_2303.html  [v] “Wife of Xu Wanping BeatenWhen Visiting Prison,” (许万平妻子探监遭到殴打), June 16, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_8088.html   [vi] “XinyuVillage, Jiangxi WomanUndergoes Forced Tubal Ligation for Exposing IllegalLand Requisition,” (江西新余村妇因揭露违规征地被强制结扎), June 19, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post_9318.html

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