China Human Rights Briefing 2-8 March 2010

Highlights

  • Harassment of Sensitive Individuals Continues as Government Meetings Begin: CHRD has documented 60 cases of individuals around the country who have been harassed, detained, or subjected to restrictions on their movement by officials during the “Two Meetings” of the National People’s Congress and the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
  • Elderly Woman Buried Alive during Forced Eviction: CHRD learned this week of the tragic case of a Hubei woman buried alive by demolition workers who arrived to demolish her home before she had completed moving out.  Ms. Wang Cuiyun (王翠云) became the latest victim in the struggle between developers and citizens over forced evictions, and reports from the scene suggest that local officials did little to protect Ms. Wang or pursue those responsible for her death.
  • CHRD Releases Two New Reports: CHRD released two reports in Chinese this past week: our annual report on the situation of human rights defenders for the year 2009, and a report documenting and analyzing rights abuses in the government's implementation of its family planning policy. The full texts of these reports are available on our Chinese-language website.

 Contents

 Harassmentof ActivistsHarassmentand Detention of Activistsand Petitioners During Government MeetingsCHRDhas so far documented a total of 60 activistsand petitioners who have been subjected to “soft detention,” detainedin blackjails or “disappeared” during the “Two Meetings” of the NationalPeople’sCongress and the National Committee of the Chinese People’s PoliticalConsultative Conference, which began March 5 and March 3, respectively,inBeijing. The following are cases documented by CHRD in the past week ofindividualswho have been harassed, threatened, or subjected to restricted movementdue tothe Two Meetings:  Activists:

  • Police have been posted outside the home of Mr. Yu Haocheng (于浩成), a former high-ranking government official and one of the founders of the Independent Chinese PEN, since March 1. Officers informed Yu that they would leave at the end of the "Two Meetings" period, on March 18.[1]
  • On March 6, the police warned Beijing dissidents Hu Shigen (胡石根), Gao Hongming (高洪明), Xu Yonghai (徐永海), Yang Jing (杨靖), and Jia Jianying (贾建英) against attending a house church meeting on the same day. The police told Hu he was not to leave his house on that day.[2]
  • Qianjiang, Hubei elections expert and rights activist Yao Lifa (姚立法) has been kept under tight surveillance and has had his movements restricted since March 5. On that date, Yao was called in for a talk during which local Bureau of Education officials and leaders at the school where he is employed threatened to dock his wages or even remove him from his job because of his petitioning, articles he has written, and other rights-defense activities with which he has been involved in recent years.[3]
  • Beijing house church leader and legal scholar Fan Yafeng (范亚峰) was taken away from his home by Beijing National Security and Haidian District police to prevent him from meeting with a Spanish journalist on the evening of March 6. He was taken to the Shuangyushu Police Station and questioned for more than nine hours before being released.[4]
  • Mr. Yu Tong'an (余同安), of Xinhui, Guangdong, who has been protesting and petitioning since his child suffered brain damage as a result of a faulty Japanese encephalitis vaccine in 2007, reported on March 5 that plainclothes police officers were posted outside of his home.  According to Yu, local police have instructed him not to accept any interview requests or contact any activists during the Two Meetings.  Yu had planned to participate in a gathering of vaccine victims' families in Beijing during the Meetings.[5]
  • In Jilin City, Jilin, activist Mr. Huang Huo (黄祸) reports that his telephone's long-distance service was cut on the morning of March 4, and he suspects that local officials are responsible.  Mr. Huang has repeatedly criticized the government during interviews with media outlets such as Voice of America and Radio Free Asia.[6]
  • Since March 2, Shandong University professor Sun Wenguang (孙文广) has been under "soft detention," with guards monitoring his actions around the clock. According to Sun, this has become a common occurrence during “sensitive” periods.[7]
  • On March 4, Shenzhen National Security Police took activist Zhao Dagong (赵达功) away from his home. His whereabouts are currently unknown, though it is believed he is being detained until the conclusion of the Two Meetings.[8]
  • Shaanxi activist Li Zhiying (李智英) reports that guards have been posted outside of his home in Beijing since March 2.[9]
  • In Beijing, activists Liu Di (刘荻), Yang Licai (杨立才), Wang Lihong (王荔蕻) and others have been told to refrain from leaving their homes, and to "check in" with police if they do go out; [10]
  • Beijing dissidents Cha Jianguo (查建国), Gao Hongming (高洪明), Hu Shigen (胡石根), Jia Jianying (贾建英), Qi Zhiyong (齐志勇) have reported that guards are stationed outside of the homes 24 hours a day and that they are not allowed to leave their homes unless accompanied by the police; [11]
  • Beijing activist Liu Anjun (刘安军), who was previously reported to be missing, has been located at a hotel in Beijing, where he is being detained; [12]
  • Beijing activist Li Hai (李海) is missing, and has been out of contact with the outside world for the past two days;[13]
  • Beijing human rights activist and director of the Mr. Democracy Research Center Zhang Hui (张辉) discovered on March 3 that a police car was stationed outside of his home, and that three officers have been tasked with keeping him under soft detention;[14]
  • As of March 3, Sichuan activist Chen Yunfei (陈云飞) has been placed under soft detention by National Security police; [15]
  • A number of Hangzhou activists, including Zhu Yingdi (朱瑛娣), Qiu Yumei (裘玉梅), Xu Jie (许杰), Chen Ying (陈映), Huang Limin (黄利民), and Wang Liying (王丽英) have been placed under 24-hour surveillance and are barred from traveling to Beijing during the Two Meetings;[16]
  • Also in Hangzhou, police warned Wang Xue’e (汪雪娥), wife of imprisoned writer Lü Gengsong (吕耿松) to “keep a calm mentality” during the Two Meetings;[17]
  • Beginning March 2, Hu Shigen (胡石根), a former professor recently released after spending 17 years in prison for organizing the China Freedom and Democracy Party, has been placed under "soft detention" at his home in Beijing.[18]
  • On March 2, Xianghe, Hebei activist Li Jinfang's (李金芳) internet service was unexpectedly cut off, and despite repeated calls to her internet company, she has been unable to get back online. Li's home internet service has been disrupted on numerous occasions since 2009, usually during similar "sensitive" periods. (CHRD)[19]

Petitioners:

  • Nanning, Guangxi petitioner Liang Hanguang (梁汉光) and two others were seized in Beijing on March 7 and forcibly returned to their hometown. The three were petitioning regarding issues related to the forced demolition of their homes.[20]
  • Feng Yongji (冯永记), a petitioner from Xinjiang, was followed by unknown persons all day in Beijing on March 5 and had to stay away from her rented room for fear of being captured. Feng’s friends in Xinjiang told her that local officials have arrived in Beijing to track her down during the Two Meetings. For years, Feng has been petitioning against legal injustice her husband suffered and in that period was forcibly returned to Xinjiang over ten times.[21]
  • Baotou City, Inner Mongolia petitioners Gong Fucai (巩富财), Yang Xiuqing (杨秀清), Zhang Heping (张和平) and his wife, and Deng Jinyi (邓金义) were seized in Beijing on March 6 and 7 and forcibly returned to Baotou. They are currently in detention in their hometown.[22]
  • Zhengzhou, Henan petitioner Ms. Liu Xianzhi (刘先枝) was seized outside the State Bureau of Letters and Visits in Beijing on March 6, and has been detained in a black jail in Beijing. Ms. Liu has been petitioning in Beijing for years regarding forced eviction as well as the death of her husband and the failure of local courts to bring his killer to justice.[23]
  • Police in Beijing seized nine petitioners out of a larger group on Tiananmen Square on March 6, beating two petitioners in the process. The petitioners, who were from Xiangfan City in Hubei Province, had gathered on Tiananmen Square after officials at the Ministry of Public Security had refused to accept their materials earlier in the morning. Those detained were Wang Jiaqing (王家清), Xu Wanying (许万英), Zhang Yugui (张玉桂), Cao Guo (曹果), He Defu (贺德福) and his daughters Wang Shiping (王世平) and Wang Chunping (王春平), seven year-old He Guanglei (贺光磊), and four year-old Chen Mengfei (陈梦菲). According to He Defu, he and his younger daughter Wang Chunping were beaten by police at the Tiananmen PSB Station, where officials confiscated a camera belonging to Wang. Their current whereabouts are not known.[24]
  • Taiwan petitioner Liu Xinyu (刘心榆) was seized by police in Beijing on March 7 and held at Public Security University that evening. On March 8, Liu was handed over to officials from the Taiwan Affairs Office of the Nanning, Guangxi Government, and escorted to Nanning on a train. Liu managed to escape and will likely return to Beijing. Liu arrived in Beijing on March 3 to petition on behalf of her father, whose property in Nanning was forcibly demolished. (CHRD)[25]
  • Shanghai petitioner Shen Peilan (沈佩兰) was seized at a Beijing restaurant on March 7 and detained in a black jail near the South Train Station before being forcibly returned to Shanghai the next morning. At the time of writing her whereabouts are unknown, though she is believed to be in detention in Shanghai. [26]
  • Xi Guozhen (奚国珍) and Zhang Ying (张英), of Shanghai, were seized in Beijing on March 6 and forcibly returned to Shanghai, where they were detained in a local detention house. [27]
  • Shanghai petitioner Mao Xinyuan (茅新媛) reports that she has been under 24-hour surveillance in Shanghai by two guards since March 4.[28]
  • Former Qianjiang City, Hubei people's policemen Li Zhengqing (李正清) and Sun Bin (孙斌) were seized in Beijing on March 3 by Qianjiang police and administratively detained for 10 days. According to police, Li and Sun were being detained for participating in a November 16, 2009 protest of laid-off people's police in Qianjiang. However, it is believed police have detained Li and Sun to prevent them from petitioning during the Two Meetings. Police have not notified Li or Sun's families of their detention, and will not permit family members to visit the two in detention.[29]
  • Nantong, Jiangsu petitioners Cao Wenxing (曹文星) and Zhu Ping (朱萍) were seized in Beijing on March 3 and forcibly returned to Nantong, where they are currently detained in a black jail. The two are veteran petitioners who have been repeatedly detained by local officials in the past.[30]
  • Xi'an petitioner Zhang Dalian (张大联) was taken away from her home on March 2 by police and local government officials. She is currently being held in Hanzhong City in southern Shaanxi;[31]
  • Shanghai petitioner Chen Jianfang (陈建芳), who was believed to be detained, has successfully avoided officials in Shanghai seeking to place her under detention. She is currently in Beijing;[32]
  • Wang Fengmei (王风美), a petitioner from Yantai, Shandong who has been detained repeatedly and sent to RTL for petitioning over the past six and a half years, reports that she is currently under police surveillance and has been warned not to travel to Beijing; [33]
  • Nantong, Jiangsu petitioner Wang Qin (王琴) was kidnapped in Beijing on March 3, and is currently being held at the Beijing Liaison Office of the Nantong City government. (CHRD)[34]

ShaanxiActivist Denied Legal Worker Certificate by Provincial OfficialsOnMarch 8, Yang Bo (杨博,given name Yang Zhongli [杨忠利])received notice fromthe Fengxiang County Bureau of Justice in Shaanxi Province that theShaanxiProvincial Bureau of Justice had decided to rescind his legal workercertificate. Provincial officials claimed that Yang had provided "falseinformation" in his 2008 application for a legal worker certificatebecause he failed to disclose a two-and-a-half-year period during whichhe wasdetained in RTL for writing about the Tiananmen massacre. However, somebelievethat Yang, a former soldier-turned-activist, is being punished foradvisingvillagers in Fengxiang, Shaanxi seeking to defend their land rights inAugust2008. Yang was also one of the organizers of China Human Rights Forumin 2007. Yangrecently completed a legal training program but his legal workercertificatehad been withheld. (CHRD)[35]Beijing Police Summon ActivistChen Tianshi after Intercepting Message from European DiplomatOnthe afternoon of March 2, Christian house churchleader and human rights activist Chen Tianshi (陈天石)was summoned by National Security police in Beijing's Shunyi District.Policequestioned Chen about articles on cases of religious persecution theybelievedhe had written in recent years as well as his plans to meet withforeigndiplomats. Last week, an official from the delegation of the EuropeanUnion toChina had contacted Chen to set up a meeting to discuss the issue ofreligionin China; Chen believes police intercepted this message and summonedhim as aresult. Police who questioned Chen did not bar him from meeting withEuropeandiplomats, but urged him to show "proper restraint." He was releasedafter less than two hours of questioning. (CHRD)[36]ArbitraryDetentionLawyersVisit Increasingly Ill Fan Yanqiong, Family Once Again Applies forRelease forTreatment Accordingto relatives, detained activist FanYanqiong (范燕琼)met with her lawyer Jiang Zhifu (姜之福)on March 5. Jiang reported that Fan's health has continued to worsenduring herdetention, and that she now faces the threat of paralysis due tocerebralarteritis, a serious neurological disease which has already left herunable towalk. Fan also suffered from kidney disease. On March 8, Fan's daughterappliedfor Fan to be released on bail for medical treatment, the fifth suchapplication prepared on her behalf. The Fujian authorities have eitherdeniedor not responded to these applications. Fan was taken into custody onJune 26,2009, after she posted articles online alleging official misconduct andcover-ups in the case of a young woman’s death in Minqing County,FujianProvince. Fan and two co-defendants were tried on November 11, 2009,but as ofthe time of writing the court has yet to deliver a verdict. (CHRD)[37]BeijingActivists Detained for Challenging CCTV Claim that Beijing DistrictAchieved“Zero Petitioners”Beijingactivists Yang Qiuyu (杨秋雨)and his wife Wang Yuqin (王玉琴)were detained byChongwen District Police after they challenged a February 11 CCTVreport whichstated that Chongwen District in Beijing had reached its stated goal ofhaving"zero petitioners." Zhang and Wang protested outside of the CCTVoffices on February 24, using their own experiences as petitioners toquestionthe station's reporting. They were placed under surveillance butmanaged toevade the police and on March 3, they return to the CCTV officesofficesof thecomplain aboutCCTV. Police detained Wang Yuqin on March 4 and punishedher with17 days of administrative detention; Yang was seized on March 6 onTiananmenSquare and turned over to the Chongwen District Police, whointerrogated himfor 35 hours before sending him to 10 days of detention. (CHRD)[38]HunanActivist Luo Qian Transferred to RTL Camp in Shaoyang CityCHRDhas learned that Wuguang City, Hunan Provinceactivist Luo Qian (罗茜)was transferred to the Shaoyang CityRe-education through Labor (RTL) Camp on March 6. Luo was sent to twoyears of RTLon January 8, 2010 for "disrupting social order" for his efforts toinvestigate the suspicious death of Yang Kuansheng (杨宽生),the former vice-mayor of Wugang City. Yang Kuansheng died undermysterious circumstanceson November 26, 2009, and though local officials declared his death a"suicide," the injuries Yang sustained before his death have led manyto believe that he was in fact murdered. (CHRD)[39]GuizhouPetitioner-Turned-Activist Lu Yanfei Sent to Two Years of RTLCHRDlearned today that petitioner-turned-activist Ms.Lu Yanfei (路延飞),of Bijie City, Guizhou, has been sentto two years of Re-education through Labor (RTL) by the Bijieauthorities.  According to the RTL decision, Luis beingdetained for persistent petitioning and for posting information which"slanders" the local government on overseas websites, includingBoxun.com. Lu was seized by police on February 22 outside of governmentofficesin Bijie, and was originally administratively detained for 10 days for"disrupting public order" before she was sent to RTL.  Lubegan petitioning in March 2009 on behalfof herself and other local villagers who lost the

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