China Human Rights Briefing September 7-12, 2011
- Updates on Detentions and Disappearances Related to the “Jasmine Revolution” Crackdown: Activist Wang Lihong (王荔蕻) has been convicted and given a nine-month prison sentence for “creating a disturbance.” Dozens of people gathered outside the courthouse on the day of her verdict hearing to show their support, and many also faced restrictions to their movement. In addition, the netizen-writer Hu Di (胡荻) has been released from a psychiatric institution, and activist Chen Wei (陈卫) met with his lawyer for the first time since being detained in February.
- Authorities Tamper With Local People’s Congress Elections: As local People’s Congress elections take place in China, CHRD reports further actions by authorities to block independent candidates and to rig voting. On September 6, CHRD released a statement criticizing suppression against citizens involved in the elections.
- 150 Shanghai Petitioners Detained in Black Jail, Some on Hunger Strike
- Hunan Authorities Reject Medical Parole Application for Activist
- Nanning Petitioners Released from Black Jail
- Voting Rigged in District Election in Guangzhou
- Heilongjiang Authorities Strip Independent Candidates of Electoral Qualifications
- Jilin Officials Block Qualified Electoral Candidate
- CHRD Decries Abuses Tied to People’s Congress Elections, Calls for Accountability & Rights Protections
Arbitrary DetentionUpdates on Detentions and DisappearancesRelated to the “Jasmine Revolution” CrackdownBeijing Activist WangLihong Convicted, Receives a Nine-Month SentenceOn September 9,Beijing activist Wang Lihong (王荔蕻) was convicted of “creating adisturbance” and given a nine-month sentence by theChaoyang District People’s Court, following her trialthat took place on August 12. Wang has indicated toher lawyers that she will appeal the decision, and herson, Qi Jianxiang (齐健翔), told supporters that hismother is innocent and that the court “should not havesentenced her to even one day in prison.” About 80supporters, journalists, and diplomats gatheredoutside the Wenyuhe Courthouse to await the verdict,and about 60 uniformed and plainclothes police werealso present.[i]Only Wang’s family and her lawyers, LiuXiaoyuan (刘晓原) and Han Yicun (韩一村), were allowed to attend theverdict hearing. Many Beijing activists, includingfilmmaker He Yang (何杨), Zhao Lianhai (赵连海), and dissident ZhaJianguo (查建国), were not allowed to leavetheir homes or were issued warnings before the hearingtook place. Other activists who tried to go to Beijingto show their support were stopped by local policefrom leaving their hometowns. Netizens reported thatauthorities temporarily closed the two bus stops nearWenyuhe Courthouse on the morning of the hearing, andas a result many of them failed to arrive on time. Learn more about Wang Lihong’s life andactivism by viewing the documentary film “Let the SunShine on the Ground” (让阳光洒到地上), which is linked here on CHRD’s website. Made byactivist and filmmaker AiXiaoming (艾晓明), this documentary about Wangincludes interviews with her family, friends, lawyers,and fellow netizens. (CHRD)[ii]Netizen-WriterHu Di Released from Psychiatric HospitalCHRDlearned on September 11 that the netizen and writer HuDi (胡荻), who had been held in HefeiNo.4 Hospital (a psychiatric hospital), has beenreleased. Hu, from Hefei City in Anhui Province, wentmissing on March 13 and was found to be held in thehospital on August 19. According to netizens whovisited him after his release, Hu was in “good shape.”However, details about his disappearance and hisdetention in the psychiatric institution are currentlyunclear. (CHRD)[iii]Authorities AllowLawyer First Meeting With Detained SichuanActivistOn September 8, lawyer ZhengJianwei (郑建伟) was allowed to visit hisclient, Chen Wei (陈卫),an activist from Suining City, Sichuan Province,marking their first meeting since Chen was detainedover six months ago. Zheng spoke with Chen for about ahalf-hour at the Suining City Detention Center in thepresence of two policemen, and indicated that hisclient appears to be in fair emotional and physicalhealth. Prior to the meeting, authorities had refusedseveral requests by Zheng to visit with Chen inviolation of Article 33 of the Lawyers Law, whichstates that access to a lawyer should be legallygranted “from the day a criminal suspect is taken intocustody or questioned for the first time byinvestigative authorities.” Suining police officers criminally detainedChen on February 20 on suspicion of “incitingsubversion of state power,” and he was formallyarrested on March 28. His detention is allegedly tiedto a series of articles that he published online. ByAugust, his case had reportedly been submitted to thelocal procuratorate for a second time. A 1989Tiananmen student protester, Chen has been imprisonedon two occasions for his democratic rights activism,and has emerged in recent years as a leader inorganizing human rights actions in Sichuan. (CHRD)[iv]150 Shanghai PetitionersDetained in Black Jail, Some on Hunger StrikeOnSeptember 10, a group of about 20 petitioners wereriding a public bus in Beijing when policemen stoppedthe bus and demanded that they showed their ID cards.When the petitioners refused, the policemen seizedthem and sent them to Jiujingzhuang Black Jail. Thepetitioners counted a total of about 300 petitionersheld in the same jail. On September 11, about 150 ofthese petitioners, all from Shanghai, were then sentto another black jail in Beijing South Train Station.Some of them went on a hunger strike to demand theirrelease. It is unclear whether they have beenreleased. (CHRD)[v]Hunan Authorities Reject Medical ParoleApplication for ActivistPrison authoritieshave rejected an application for medical parole for Xie Fulin (谢福林), a rights activist fromChangsha City, Hunan Province who has been unable toreceive adequate medical treatment, according to hiswife, Jin Yan (金焰). Jin visited Xie in ChangshaPrison on September 6, and has indicated that hisblood pressure and pulse are very high, and that hefeels an overall lack of strength. While authoritiesrefuse to release Xie on medical grounds, they arereportedly pressuring him to admit his guilt, afterwhich time it is possible they would reduce hissentence, but Xie has refused to do so. Earlier thisyear, Xie was reportedly beaten by a prison guard, andguards had also threatened to lock him in solitaryconfinement. In March of 2010, Xie was sentenced to sixyears’ imprisonment by Changsha’s Furong DistrictCourt for “stealing electricity” in a case believed tobe brought in retaliation against Xie for his rightsactivism. He is also a signatory to Charter 08and has participated in activities with the ChinaPan-Blue Alliance. (CHRD)[vi]Nanning Petitioners Released from BlackJail Two petitioners from NanningCity, Guangxi Province, were taken back home this weekafter being held in a black jail in Beijing, includingQuan Lianzhao (全连昭), who had served a criminaldetention early this year as part of the JasmineRevolution crackdown. Along with Quan, LiYanjun (李燕军) was seized by police onAugust 30 and then detained in Jiujingzhuang BlackJail before Nanning interceptors took them to anotherblack jail, reportedly in the Daxing District ofBeijing. While there, they were kept in veryuncomfortable and unsanitary conditions, and Quan, whois in poor health, began a hunger strike. She wasfinally returned to her home in Nanning on September4. Li was taken back to Nanning on September 5, butthen was interrogated by public order personnel at alocal police station before being allowed to go homeon September 7. (CHRD)[vii]Harassment of ActivistsNanjing Netizen RoughlyHandled at Police StationOn September 8, policeofficers from the Bailu Police Station of the Qinhuaibranch of the Nanjing Public Security Bureau (PSB) inJiangsu Province took to their station the netizen andactivist, He Peirong (何培蓉, aka “Pearl” [珍珠]), and a friend, who wasreportedly taken in after not having registered tovisit He. He Peirong was asked to fill out a report atthe station, and while doing so a man,believed to be a plainclothes policeman, beat and scratched her, andalso tried to take away her cell phone, according to He. The man refused to showidentification, and instead called over the stationchief and other authorities. Earlier this year, He washarassed by police on at least other two occasions,when she tried to visit “barefoot” lawyer andactivist Chen Guangcheng (陈光诚), who is under house arrestin his village home in Shandong Province. (CHRD)[viii]Forced Eviction andDemolition/Land Expropriation Hundreds in Shanghai Keep Up Protests,Police Take Away Citizens On September 7, more than 200 villagers fromAnting Town, Jiading District, Shanghai Municipalitybroke through a blockade by local authorities and tookthe subway to the municipal center to continueprotesting overland requisition and demolitions. The Kangping Road PoliceStation dispatched a large number of officers, whoprevented Anting villagers from reaching the ShanghaiMunicipal Party Committee Office and forced them ontovehicles before turning them over to personnel withthe Jiading District government. Police also draggedoff two Shanghai residents who weretaking photographs at the scene, and took into custodyZhang Yongyuan (张永元), a Wuzhao Village residentof over 70 years old who has since been released. The actions on September 7marked the 35th time since August 17 that Anting residents have gathered to demand theShanghai government look into possible illegal landrequisitions and property demolitions in their localvillages. (CHRD)[ix]Freedom of Expression and of Access toInformation Authorities Shut Down Teachers’ WebsiteOn September 6, authoritiesshut down a website maintained by substitute teacherswho had been dismissed from their jobs. The blogitself had been providing support for teachers at minbanschools—schools not operated by the state—and mayhave been shut down because of an article posted inJuly about how to launch a national association forsuch teachers. Before being closed down, the site’saddress had been http://www.mbdkjsw.com/Item/Show.asp?m=1&d=1611. (CRLW)[x]Local NPC Election WatchVoting Rigged in District Election inGuangzhou On September 8, voting concludedfor the People’s Congress representative in theLijiang Garden electoral district for Panyu District,Guangzhou City, Guangdong Province, with the processreportedly rigged in favor of the eventual winner. Theelected representative, Long Bin (龙滨), alsothe director of the Lijiang Neighborhood Committee,received 384 votes, with many reportedly fromindividuals from outside the area who should have beenineligible to vote. Independent candidate Liang Shuxin (梁树新) received the second-most support—64 write-invotes—though he had been stripped of his electoralqualifications in late August after trying to run asan independent candidate. Local residents observed thataround 200 individuals had turned up the night beforeand then cast ballots on September 8, though theirnames had not been announced 20 days prior to theelection, thus violating electoral law. Plainclothespolice and city administration personnel were on handduring the vote count, and cell phone reception hadbeen blocked, thus hindering efforts to monitor theresults. Though Long Bin received by far the mostnumber of votes, she did not appear at the scene orspeak with any residents after the votes had beencounted. A voter said that a security guard hadrecently disclosed that a local property managementcompany had told its employees that those who had notregistered to vote in their hometowns to register andvote in Lijiang. It is suspected that these particularvoters cast their ballots for Long. (CHRD)[xi]Heilongjiang AuthoritiesStrip Independent Candidates of ElectoralQualificationsOn September 6, when the listof preliminary candidates for the People’s Congresselection in Jiguan District, Jixi City, HeilongjiangProvince, was announced, independent candidates ShanYajuan (单亚娟) and Sun Changfu (孙长福) did not find their names onit. Shan and Sun have been recommended by more than 10recommenders, the minimum requirement to run in theelection according to the Article 29 of the ElectionLaw. When Shan confronted the coordinator of thedistrict’s election committee, she was told that thedirector of Jiguan District People’s Congress wasresponsible for ensuring that her name does not appearon the list. (CHRD)[xii]Jilin Officials Block Qualified ElectoralCandidateOn September 7, election officials in BaiqiTown, Shulan City, Jilin Province, had left off thename of Xu Yimin (徐翊民) from a final list of localPeople’s Congress candidates even though he hadgarnered the required number of recommenders. OnSeptember 5, when Xu submitted names of 40 of his 78total recommenders, the Baiqi Village Branch SecretarySong Xiangye (宋相烨), who is also the head of theelection committee, said that Xu could not run for thelocal People’s Congress because high-ranking localofficials likely resent Xu for leading efforts againsttheir selling off of collective assets. The 17candidates on the list are largely Communist Partymembers and cadres with low educational levels, whileXu intended to run as an independent candidate and hasearned a college degree. Reportedly, the listedcandidates also had not registered their recommendersaccording to the relevant legal requirements. (CHRD)[xiii] Law and Policy WatchCampaign Launched to Crack Down on“Pornographic and Illegal Publications andInformation”According to aSeptember 6 article on Xinhua, the Chinese governmentis conducting a nationwide campaign to crack down on“pornographic publications and harmful information”between September 5 and November 5. The campaign,conducted by various government departments, includingthe Ministry of Public Security, will target websites,shops, and companies where such publications andinformation is found. This campaign follows a similarone conducted between November 2009 and May 2010,which “successfully improved the cultural environmenton the Internet,” according to the article. (Xinhua)[xv]It is feared that the current campaign, like theprevious one, will be used to target freedom ofexpression on the Internet.Special NoticeCHRD Decries Abuses Tied to People’sCongress Elections, Calls for Accountability &Rights ProtectionsOn September 6, CHRD releaseda statement criticizing the suppressionby authorities against individuals involved in localPeople’s Congress elections, which are being held inChina this year and in 2012. The statementspecifically outlines the ongoing mistreatment ofdemocracy rights activist Yao Lifa (姚立法), who has been disappeared,detained in unhygienic conditions and closelymonitored for advising citizens around the countryabout running as independent candidates. In addition,CHRD points out the detention, beatings, andharassment of hundreds of potential candidates. Thestatement demands that authorities safeguardconstitutional and electoral rights, identify thoselegally responsible for ongoing harassment and arrangefor compensation for those who rights have beenviolated, and allow for greater press freedom toreport on the elections. (CHRD)[xiv] Editors of this issue: Victor Clemens andSonglian Wang Follow us on Twitter: @CHRDnet Join us on Facebook: CHRDnet (NEW!)News updates from CHRD [i] CHRD previously reportedincorrectly that “over 200 supporters, journalists anddiplomats gathered outside the courthouse” duringthe verdict hearing in a press release datedSeptember 9. [ii] “A Documentary on theSentencing Hearing of Human Rights Activist WangLihong” (人权活动家王荔蕻宣判现场纪实), September 10, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_1134.html;“Chinese Court Sends to Jail Activist and “JasmineCrackdown” Detainee Wang Lihong,” September 9,2011, http://chrdnet.org/2011/09/12/chinese-court-sends-to-jail-activist-and-%E2%80%9Cjasmine-crackdown%E2%80%9D-detainee-wang-lihong/;“CHRDStatement:Protest Beijing Court Verdict Against Human RightsActivist Wang Lihong” (维权网声明：抗议北京法院宣判人权活动家王荔蕻), September 9, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_09.html;“Alert: Wang Lihong Sentenced to 9Months in Prison, Defense Will Appeal” (快讯：王荔蕻被判有期徒刑9个月，当事人表示上诉), September 8, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/9.html;“BeforeHumanRights Activist Wang Lihong’s Hearing, ManySubjected to Limits on Personal Freedom” (人权活动家王荔蕻案庭审，多人被限制人身自由), September 8, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_7358.html;“PoliceTakeAway Netizens Intending to Come to Beijing toSupport Wang Lihong at Verdict Hearing” (网友欲去北京围观王荔蕻案宣判被警察带走), September 8, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_4582.html;“Special Attention: Human Rights Activist WangLihong’s Sentencing Hearing Set for September 9,”(特别关注：人权活动 家王荔蕻案9月9日宣判), September 7, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/99.html;“Let the Sun Shine on theGround” (让阳光洒到地上) [documentary film], http://chrdnet.org/2011/09/08/3237/;“Liu Xiaoyuan: Defense Statement in First Hearingof Wang Lihong Case for Creating a Disturbance,” (刘晓原：王荔蕻寻衅滋事案一审辩护 词), August 14, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/08/blog-post_8059.html;“Lawyer Han Yicun: Defense Statement on Behalf ofWang Lihong,” (韩一村律师：王荔蕻案辩护词),August 12, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/08/blog-post_12.html;“Trial Concludes for Human Rights Activist WangLihong, Lawyer Calls the Proceedings Unjust,” (人权活动家王荔蕻案结束庭审，律师 指审判不公), August 11, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/08/blog-post_7932.html?spref=tw;“Wang Lihong Trial Opens, Supporters’ Applicationsto Observe Denied,” (王荔蕻案开庭，现场声援者申请旁听被拒), August 11, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/08/blog-post_9093.html?spref=tw [iii] Twitter User Hu Di,Disappeared During the Jasmine Incident, HasReturned Home” (因茉莉花事件失踪的推友胡荻已经回家),September 11, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_2651.html [iv] “LawyerMeets For First Time With Sichuan RightsDefender Chen Wei, Detained for Over Half Year” (律师首次会见被关押半年多的四川维权人士陈卫), September 8, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_5835.html [v] “More than 150 ShanghaiPetitioners on Hunger Strike to Protest theirDetention in Beijing South Station” (上海150余访民绝食抗议被控北京南站), September 10, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/150.html [vi] “Changsha Rights ActivistXie Fulin Seriously Ill, Medical ParoleApplication Rejected,”(长沙维权人士谢福林病重，保外就医不获批准), September 7, 2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_5361.html; “Drunk Prison GuardsBeat Xie Fulin, Threaten to Shut Him in SolitaryConfinement” (狱警酒后殴打谢福林，威胁关其禁闭), May 31,2011, http://wqw2010.blogspot.com/2011/05/blog-post_8025.html; “Activists Xie Fulinand Brother Sentenced to Six Years” (人权捍卫者谢福林被判刑案质疑), March 31, 2010, http://peacehall.com/news/gb/china/2010/03/201003311043.shtml vii “Two Guangxi PetitionersHeld in ‘Black Jail’ in Beijing,” (两名
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