[CHRD] Prominent Chinese Citizens Call for Government to Ratify ICCPR

China Human Rights Briefing February 22-28, 2013

 

Contents

Arbitrary Detention

Former Cops-Turned-Petitioners Seized in Beijing, Held in Black Jail

Freedom of Peaceful Assembly & Association

Protesting North Korean Nuclear Test, Activists Detained After Peaceful Demonstration

Citizen Actions

Open Letter Urges Chinese Government to Ratify International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights

Arbitrary Detention

Former Cops-Turned-Petitioners Seized in Beijing, Held in Black Jail

One-time policemen who had reportedly come to Beijing to seek remedies for injustice were recently seized and temporarily detained in a black jail in Beijing. On February 24, 10 ex-officers from Heilongjiang Province were swept up by police in Daxing District, and then held in the temporary detention facility at Jiujingzhuang before being released. Among those taken into custody was Xu Zhaojie (徐兆杰), the wife of Zhang Guofeng (张国峰), a policeman serving an eight-year prison sentence after being convicted of several crimes in September 2012. Xu maintains that her husband was imprisoned based on evidence concocted by corrupt police officials.[1]

Freedom of Peaceful Assembly & Association

Protesting North Korean Nuclear Test, Activists Detained After Peaceful Demonstration

Several protesters in Guangzhou were detained after demonstrating against North Korea’s recent nuclear test, and police also took into custody activists who called for the protestors’ release. On February 23, Guangzhou police dragged away 14 individuals who held banners appealing for peace and environmental protection in response to the nuclear test, and beat up some of them in the process. Later, authorities at a police station turned away lawyers who tried to meet the detainees. Some protestors were subsequently freed, but four were given administrative detentions for “illegal assembly and demonstration.” Other activists who then took to the streets to call for the other protestors’ release were themselves seized by police. Human rights lawyers so far have only been allowed to meet some of these detained activists.[2]

Citizen Actions

Open Letter Urges Chinese Government to Ratify International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights

An open letter signed by prominent Chinese citizens and circulating throughout the country’s social media is calling on the government to ratify the UN International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) (Chinese text and English translation). Addressed to the new leaders who make up the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC), the letter is signed by more than 100 influential figures from a broad swath of civil society, including scholars Cui Weiping (崔卫平), He Weifang (贺卫方), and Yu Jianrong (于建嵘), human rights lawyers Pu Zhiqiang (浦志强), activist Xu Zhiyong (许志永), journalist Dai Qing (戴晴), economist Mao Yushi (茅于轼), blogger Ran Yunfei (冉云飞), investigative reporter Wang Keqin (王克勤), and author Wang Lixiong (王力雄), as well as others from influential media outlets and think tanks. The letter is drawing greater attention to free speech and association rights just prior to the “Two Meetings” to take place in early March, when the NPC and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference will convene in Beijing. China signed the ICCPR in 1998, but has not ratified it despite repeatedly indicating its intention to move toward ratification.

Edited by Ann Song and Victor Clemens

[1] “Xu Zhaojie, Wife of Heilongjiang Policeman, Out of Contact After Being Taken by Local Interceptors” (黑龙江刑警之妻徐兆杰遭驻京办截访后下落不明), February 27, 2013, WQW; “Ten Petitioning Police Officers Held in Black Jail at Jiujingzhuang” (十名上访警察被关久敬庄黑监狱), February 26, 2013, WQW

[2] “Guangzhou Human Rights Activists Take to Streets to Protest Detention of People Against Nuclear Pollution” (广州维权人士上街抗议警方拘留反核污染人士),February 27, 2013, WQW; “Rights Activists Keep Paying Close Attention to Citizens Detained for Protesting North Korea’s Nuclear Test and Appeal of Releasing Them Immediately” (维权人士持续强烈关注在广州抗议朝鲜核爆被拘留的维权公民、呼吁立即放人), February 26, 2013, WQW; “Human Rights Activists Indicate Chinese Government Seized Citizens Protesting Nuclear Test Under Pressure of North Korea” (维权人士指中国政府迫于朝鲜政府压力抓捕抗核爆义士), February 25, 2013, WQW; “Statements of WQW: Guangzhou Authority Should Release The Citizens Against North Korea’s Nuclear Test Immediately” (“维权网”声明:广州当局应立即释放抗议朝鲜核爆污染的维权公民), February 25, 2013, WQW; “Lawyer Sui Muqing: Notes on Providing Urgent Legal Assistance to Citizens Protesting North Korea’s Nuclear Test” (隋牧青律师:为抗议北韩核爆义士提供紧急法律援助纪行), February 24, 2013, WQW; “Whereabouts Unknown of Guangzhou Democratic Figures Who Protested Against North Korea’s Nuclear Test Unknown, Several Lawyers’ Rescue Efforts Obstructed” (广州民主人士抗议朝鲜核爆被抓后下落不明,多位律师救援遭推诿), February 23, 2013, WQW; “News Flash: Guangzhou Rights Activists Who Held Banners Protesting North Korea’s Nuclear Test Beaten, Taken Away” (快讯:广州维权人士街头拉横幅抗议朝鲜核爆被殴打带走), February 23, 2013, WQW

 

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