Partial list of Prisoners of Conscience and the Disappeared by 15/06/11
Ai Weiwei(艾未未), artist, seized by police at Beijing’s CapitalAirport and prevented from boarding a flight to Hong Kong on 3 April. Officialshave yet to release any information about his whereabouts. Ai becomes the mostprominent victim of the current crackdown; dozens of individuals have so farbeen detained, arrested or ‘disappeared’. There is still no news regarding Ai’scolleagues, Wen Tao (文涛), Hu Mingfen (胡明芬),Liu Zhenggang (刘正刚) and Zhang Jinsong (张劲松), who disappeared around the same time Ai was seized bythe police.
Buddha(34), who graduated from medical college in Chongqing, is a medical doctor byprofession and works as an editor and writer in his spare time. He publishedthe essay 'Hindsight and reflection' under the pen name 'Buddha' in Shar Dungri(for a translation. At his trial, Buddha challenged the notion that hiswritings provided evidence of the charge, saying: "I don't think this iscriminal evidence. Many Chinese writers have written similar articles, likeWang Lixiong and Yu Jie, for example. There are many, but because they areChinese, there is no punishment. Since we are a minority people, you areconsidering this a crime. If this is the reason for which we are guilty by law,then we are not treated equally as Chinese citizens and it is a heavy load onour hearts." During the trial, there had been moving scenes in the Ngabacourtroom when the defendants were allowed a few minutes with their familiesand Buddha tried to pick up his two year son but failed because his arms werechained.
Chang Kun(常坤), 27-year-old HIV/AIDS activist who was knockedunconscious and had to be rushed to a hospital after local officials violentlydisrupted a meeting he organized in Linquan County, Anhui Province. Chang wasmarking the one-year anniversary of Chang Kun’s Home AIBO Youth Center, agathering place for local students and center for education projects focusingon health, human rights, and internet freedom.
Chen Wei (陈卫), 42, a rights activist based in Suining City, SichuanProvince, was formally arrested for “inciting subversion of state power” onMarch 28. Chen was criminally detained for “inciting subversion of state power”on February 20 after police in Suining called him for “tea” that same morning.Officers and security guards later searched his home, confiscating a computer,two hard drives and a USB drive. He is currently being held at the Suining CityDetention Center. Chen was a 1989 Tiananmen student protester when he wasstudying at the Beijing Institute of Technology, majoring in mechanical engineering.He was imprisoned in Qincheng prison and released in January 1991. In May 1992, Chen was again arrestedfor commemorating June 4 and organizing a political party, and was sentenced tofive years in prison. In the past several years, Chen has emerged as a leaderin organizing human rights actions in Sichuan.
Cheng Li (成力), one of the four artists who disappeared after a groupperformance of dozens of artists at the Beijing Museum of Contemporary Art. Theart performance touched on the current crackdown on freedom of expression andthe "Jasmine Revolution," and as a result four artists were detained.On March 24, he was criminally detained for "causing a disturbance"by officers from the Songzhuang police station in Beijing. He is currently being held in the Taihu DetentionCenter in Beijing's Tongzhou District.
DhondupWangchen was detained in March 2008, soon after they completed filminginterviews for a documentary 'Leaving Fear Behind' featuring Tibetans in aTibetan area of Qinghai expressing their views on the Dalai Lama, the OlympicGames, and Chinese laws. He had filmed more than 100 Tibetans, most of whomchose to speak on camera without concealing their identities. The film wassmuggled out of China prior to the film-makers' detention. The completeddocumentary, featuring 20 of the Tibetans, was screened in Beijing in August2008 and can be viewed athttp://woeser.middle-way.net/2008/09/leaving-fear-behind.html. Li Dunyong, fromthe Beijing Gongxin law firm, was blocked from taking on the case by the Xiningjudicial authorities. In March 2010, Chang Boyang, a lawyer representingDhondup Wangchen was threatened with the closure of his law firm if he did notdrop the case. Tibetan exile writer and poet Anjam, who is based in Dharamsala,India, highlighted the unique nature of Dhondup Wangchen's work, saying: “His strategyis unique in Tibetan history; no one else has done this sort of work. Hebelongs to the new Tibetan generation of intellectuals and has made a greatcontribution to his country and people.”
Dhonko,33, is a well-known writer and prize-winning poet, and also the director of theNgaba county government's local history committee. He is the author of severalbooks including “Red-minded,” “Zombie," and ”Skill.” Dhonkho published theessay “What human rights do we have over our bodies?” in Shar Dungri under thepen name Nyen or “the Wild One.” Dhonkho explained why he felt compelled totake the risk of speaking out in his essay: ”When the sweet lives of monks,students and ordinary people are dragged from this world into darkness, whenthose sweet lives which have prayed so hard for the swift fulfillment of theiraspirations are confiscated by the state, I for one cannot remain silent, andthe connection between their sad fates and my pen is a profound one.”
Ding Mao (丁矛), a 45 year-old dissident who was seized from his home onFebruary 19 and then criminally detained on the same day by police in MianyangCity, Sichuan Province, on suspicion of “inciting subversion of state power.”CHRD learned of his arrest on March 28; he is currently being held at the MianyangCity Detention Center. As a philosophy student at Lanzhou University in thelate 1980s, Ding became a student leader during the 1989 pro-democracyprotests. He was twice imprisoned for his activism, first in 1989 and again in1992 when he was arrested for organizing the Social Democratic Party. He spenta total of 10 years in jail. Before his detention and arrest, he was thegeneral manager of an investment company in Mianyang.
GheyretNiyaz: "According to media reports, Uyghur journalist and webmasterGheyret Niyaz was sentenced to 15 years in prison [in July 2010] forendangering state security by speaking to foreign journalists."http://uhrp.org/articles/4022/1/Uyghur-journalist-and-webmaster-Gheyret…(more info and a photo)
GulmireImin: "According to Amnesty International, the Uyghur AmericanAssociation, and Radio Free Asia, authorities in Urumqi, Xinjiang UyghurAutonomous Region, detained Gulmira Imin, a Uyghur Web site administrator andgovernment employee from Urumqi, on July 14, 2009. She had worked for the Website Salkin, which reportedly posted an announcement calling Uyghurs todemonstrate in Urumqi on July 5, 2009, and authorities alleged she was involvedin organizing the demonstration. The Urumqi Intermediate Court tried andsentenced Gulmira Imin on April 1, 2010, to life imprisonment for “splittism,leaking state secrets and organizing an illegal demonstration,” crimes underArticles 103, 111, and 296 of China’s Criminal Law." http://ppd.cecc.gov/QueryResultsDetail.aspx?PrisonerNum=7948(more info) http://docs.uyghuramerican.org/Can-Anyone-Hear-Us.pdf (more infoand pictures on page 16)
Xinna (新娜) and Uiles (威勒斯), the wife and sonof Inner Mongolian scholar and activist Hada (哈达), havebeen missing since the days leading up to Hada’s release from prison onDecember 10, 2010. On December 3, the bookstore run by his wife Xinna wassuddenly closed by police, who conducted a 13-hour search of the premises.Xinna was then taken into custody and held at the Inner Mongolia Number OneDetention Center. The next day, Hada’s son Uiles was interrogated by police,after which he released a public letter detailing his experience and otherinstances of police harassment he has faced over the past fifteen years. Afterspeaking to the media about his mother’s situation on December 5, Uilesdisappeared. On December 10, a photograph showing Hada, Xinna, and Uiles sittingtogether was circulated on the internet, and a New York Times report(http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/17/world/asia/17china.html?_r=2&emc=eta1… a relative who said the family was together, but confined by police to “aluxury hotel in Inner Mongolia.” CHRD has been unable to contact Hada, Xinna, or Uiles, and cannotindependently verify any news related to his release from prison or thewhereabouts of his family members.
Hu Di (胡荻), a Beijing-based netizen and writer, has been missingsince March 13.
HuaChunhui (华春晖), 47, is a Wuxi City, JiangsuProvince-based netizen, activist, and mid-level manager at an insurancecompany. He was seized by police on February 21 and criminally detained onsuspicion of “endangering state security,” according to a notice issued bypolice at the Tanduqiao Station in Wuxi’s Nanchang District. Hua, using theTwitter account @wxhch64, tweeted messages about the “Jasmine Revolution.” Huaand his fiancée Wang Yi (王译) have been active in civilsociety initiatives in recent years; for example, the couple organized a forumin Beijing in May 2010 to discuss the demonstrations outside of the Fuzhou Citytrial of three activists. Wang Yi (whose given name is Cheng Jianping) was sentto one year of Re-education through Labor in November 2010 for a tweet sheposted during violent anti-Japan demonstrations in October 2010.
KarmaSamdrup is a successful Tibetan businessman and founder of an environmentalprotection foundation. He was named philanthropist of the year in 2006 by CCTV.In June 2010, Karma was sentenced to 15 years in prison for “grave robbing” asretaliation for his activism and for speaking out on behalf of his brothers,who are also environmental activists, after they were detained for accusinglocal officials in Tibet of illegally hunting endangered animals.
KelsangJinpa, is a poet and writer. Originally from Sangchu county, Gannan TibetanAutonomous Prefecture, he studied for a short time at Kirti monastery in exile.Writing under the pen name 'Garmi' ('the Blacksmith'), Kelsang Jinpa published'The case for lifeblood and life-force' in Shar Dungri that placed thechallenges Tibetans face within the broader issue of human rights as well as inrelation to what the Chinese themselves have faced in their own history.
KirtiKyab, from Dzoege (Chinese: Ruo'ergai) County, Ngaba (Chinese: Aba), was ateacher at the Nationalities Teachers Training College in Barkham (Chinese:Ma'erkang) County. Kirti Kyab was also the vice-editor of the literary magazineShar Dungri (Eastern Snow Mountain). He was detained in March, 2010 and hiswhereabouts are unknown.
KunchokTsephel (39), an official in a Chinese government environmental department andfounder of the influential Tibetan literary website, Chodme .'Butter-Lamp'(www.tibetcm.com), was sentenced to 15 years in prison on charges of disclosingstate secrets. Some of the charges are believed to relate to content on hiswebsite, which aims to protect Tibetan culture, and possibly to passing oninformation about protests that took place in Tibet in 2008. His family had noidea where he was until November according to the same sources. They weresummoned to court on November 12, 2009, to hear the verdict of 15 yearsimprisonment after a closed- door trial at the Intermediate People’s Court inKanlho (Chinese: Gannan) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Gansu province.
KungaTseyang, pen name Gangnyi (gangs nyi: 'Sun of the Snow') is a leadingintellectual, blogger, photographer and environmental activist of theintellectual “new generation” movement. A Labrang monastery monk, Kunga Tseyangwas educated in Labrang and Beijing. He travelled widely in Tibet andphotographed the environmental degradation taking place on the plateau and itsimpact, and he also worked with the Nyenpo Yutsae Kyekham environmentalprotection group. Full details of charges against him are not known but arelikely to be connected to his writing, which include a piece entitled “Chinamust apologize to His Holiness the Dalai Lama.”
Lan Ruoyu(蓝若宇), a Chongqing-based graduate student, has beenmissing since February 27. Police also confiscated a computer belonging to Lan,a student at Communication University of China.
LiShuangde (李双德), a citizen lawyer and an activist basedin Chengdu City, Sichuan Province, was criminally detained on March 24 onsuspicion of "credit card fraud" by the Public Security Bureau (PSB)of Jinjiang District of Chengdu City. Police had taken him away on March 21. Liis currently being held in the Chengdu Detention Center, which is located in PiCounty. Li operates a legal aid center in Chengdu, and provides legal aid tocitizens who cannot afford to hire a lawyer. Li has been harassed on numerousoccasions in the past by local officials.
LiTiantian (李天天), a Shanghai-based human rights lawyer,has been missing since February 19.Li was taken away from her home by police.She maintains a blog (http://blog.sina.com.cn/u/1896094822) and her Twitteraccount is @litiantian.
LiangHaiyi (梁海怡, aka Miaoxiao [渺小]),42, a netizen originally from Guangdong Province, was taken in for questioningon February 19 by police in Harbin City, Heilongjiang Province, along with herex-husband. Her ex-husband was later released, but Liang remained in policecustody. According to Liang Xiaojun (梁小军), a lawyerretained by her family, Liang Haiyi was criminally detained on suspicion of“subversion of state power” on February 21. Police accused Liang Haiyi of“posting information from foreign websites regarding ‘Jasmine Revolution’actions on domestic websites” such as QQ, the popular Chinese social networkingsite. She is being held at the Harbin City No. 2 Detention Center.
LiuXianbin (刘贤斌) On March 25, the Suining CityIntermediate Court in Sichuan Province convicted activist Liu Xianbin (刘贤斌) of “inciting subversion of state power” and sentencedhim to a decade in prison. The decision is believed to be both punishment forLiu’s activism and a signal to those currently detained in the “JasmineRevolution” crackdown for similar crimes that they could be subjected tolengthy sentences.
MehbubeAblesh: "According to PEN's information, journalist and poet MehbubeAblesh, aged twenty-nine, worked for the Xinjiang People's Radio Station, agovernment-run station based in the provincial capital Urumqi, until she wasdismissed from her post in early August 2008 and arrested after postingcritical articles online. It is thought that she is held for posting articlescritical of Chinese government policy and the provincial leadership in XinjiangAutonomous Region. She is believed to be held in Urumqi, and no details of anycharges have been made public."http://uhrp.org/articles/1476/1/China-Uighur-writer-detained-/index.html (PENarticle about her) You can find her picture here: http://www.rfa.org/english/news/uyghur/radio-09082008141404.html
MemetjanAbdulla: "A Uyghur journalist working for an official Chinese radioservice has been sentenced to life in prison following a secret trial conductedearlier this year, according to a letter sent by a friend to Radio Free Asia.You can find more info and a picture here:http://uhrp.org/articles/4436/1/Uyghur-Journalist-Handed-Life-Term-/ind…
MigmarDhondup was arrested in connection with the March 14 protests and has beensentenced to 14 years imprisonment; he was accused of collecting “intelligenceconcerning the security and interests of the state and provid[ing] it to theDalai clique … prior to and following the 'March 14' incident”. Migmar Dhondupis in his early 30s and worked for the Kunde Foundation in Tibet, an NGOcommitted to helping marginalized and impoverished communities; he speaksfluent English and is very well educated and had worked as a tour guide.
NurmemetYasin: "Uighur poet & story writer Nurmemet Yasin is serving a 10-yearprison sentence for writing an allegorical short story that the authoritiesconsider to be a veiled indictment of their rule in the Xinjiang UighurAutonomous Region (XUAR)."http://www.amnestyusa.org/bannedbooks/pdf/china10.pdf (from Amnesty International,with a small picture, the only one we've been able to find)
QuanLianzhao (全连昭), 60, a petitioner from Guangxi Province,was seized by interceptors in Beijing on February 26 and forcibly returned toNanning City, Guangxi Province, where she was criminally detained for“subversion of state power.” Quan is currently being held in the Nanning CityNo. 1 Detention Center. It is believed that Quan’s detention is related to hertaking part in a “Revolutionary Singing Gathering” in a Beijing park on February3, where petitioners gathered to sing revolutionary songs and present accountsof their grievances. Quan also gathered with a number of petitioners onFebruary 20 to present their grievances at Beijing’s Chaoyang Park; while thegathering drew the attention of police because it was the same date as theproposed “Jasmine Revolution” protests, friends said that Quan does not use theinternet and would have not known of the demonstrations called for that date.Quan has been petitioning for four years in response to the forcedexpropriation of land in her village.
Ran Yunfei(冉云飞), 46, a writer, blogger, and activist, who wasformally arrested on March 25 for “inciting subversion of state power” and iscurrently being held in the Dujiangyan Detention Center. Ran was originallycriminally detained for “subversion of state power” on February 24, accordingto a formal detention notice received by his wife; it is not known why thecharge was changed. Ran, a member of the ethnic Tu minority who studied Chineseliterature at Sichuan University, is an employee of the magazine Sichuan Literatureand a resident of Chengdu City, Sichuan Province. He is a prolific writer ofsocial and political commentary. He blogs at and his Twitter account,@ranyunfei, has more than 44,000 followers. Ran has been in police detention since the morning of February20, when he was summoned to “tea.” Officers later searched his home andconfiscated his computer.
SunDesheng (孙德胜), a young Guangzhou City, GuangdongProvince resident, was criminally detained on suspicion of "incitingsubversion of state power" some time before March 9. Reportedly, Sun'sdetention stemmed from a friend's dinner party, where Sun wrote anti-corruptionand anti-dictatorship slogans and then posed with friends for a picture. Thedinner, which took place on February 15, was also attended by lawyers LiuShihui (刘士辉) and Li Fangping (李方平);Liu's home was searched on February 24, and police discovered the photograph onhis computer. Further details about Sun’s detention are not currentlyavailable.
TashiRabten (pen name: The'urang), a student at the Northwest NationalitiesUniversity in Lanzhou, was detained on 6 April and is believed to be held inChengdu, the provincial capital of Sichuan. Tibetan sources reported thataround 16 security personnel arrived in the university hostel and ransackedstudents' rooms. He is the editor of a banned literary magazine on the 2008protests in Tibet and author of a new collection of work called 'Written inBlood.' One of his friends said: “He has won great respect and popularity amongstudents, intellectuals and ordinary readers in Tibet as an outstanding andbrave young thinker.”
WangLihong (王荔蕻), 55, a Beijing-based human rights defenderand democracy activist, was criminally detained for "creating adisturbance" at some point before March 26. She is currently being held atthe Chaoyang District Detention Center. However, her family has yet to receiveany formal documentation regarding her detention. In 1989, Ms. Wang joined thepro-democracy demonstrations in Beijing, an experience which led her to resignfrom her government job in 1991. Ms. Wang, a former doctor, then became a dedicated democracy activistand human rights defender. She has worked on projects such as relief effortsfor the "Tiananmen homeless" and advocated on behalf of threeimprisoned Fujian netizens and citizens fighting land seizures in Beihai City,Guangxi Province.
Wangdu(41), who worked for an international public health NGO, was sentenced to lifeimprisonment after he allegedly shared, or attempted to share, informationabout the situation in Tibet. Wangdu, a former Project Officer for an HIV/AIDSprogram in Lhasa run by the Australian Burnet Institute, was charged with'espionage' by the Lhasa City Intermediate People's Court after he was detainedon March 14, 2008, the day that demonstrations turned violent in Lhasa. Wangduwas accused of collecting “intelligence concerning the security and interestsof the state and provid[ing] it to the Dalai clique… prior to and following the'March 14' incident.” He had previously served eight years in prison in 1989,the day martial law took effect in Lhasa after three days of protest andrioting. His three-year sentence to “re-education through labor” was extendedto eight years’ imprisonment after he and 10 other political prisoners signed apetition stating that the 1951 17-Point Agreement was forced on an independentTibet.
XueMingkai (薛明凯), 22, an activist from Shandong Province'sQufu City, was seized on February 18 in Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province andforcibly returned to his hometown. He was later criminally detained; however,CHRD has been unable to contact his family to learn further details. Xue served18 months in prison between May 2009 and November2010 for “subversion of statepower.” A migrant worker living in Shenzhen at the time, Xue was charged with"subversion" after allegedly planning to organize a political partycalled the “China Democratic Workers’ Party” with online friends in the summerof 2006 and then contacting and joining an overseas democracy organization inearly 2009.
Yang Qiuyu(杨秋雨), a Beijing-based dissident, was criminallydetained on March 7 for “creating a disturbance.”. Yang was taken away on March6, and on March 9 police returned to search his home, confiscating a computer,name cards, and other items. Yang is currently held in Xicheng DistrictDetention Center.
YesheChoedron was arrested in March 2008 and was convicted for “espionage” forallegedly providing “intelligence and information harmful to the security andinterests of the state” to “the Dalai clique's security department” (ref. theofficial Lhasa Evening News).
Zhou Li (周莉), a Beijing-based activist, has been missing since March27. Last year, Zhou was convicted of "creating a disturbance" andsentenced to one year in prison after participating in 2009 protests againstSun Dongdong (孙东东), the Beijing University professor whocreated an uproar in the activist community when he claimed that “99% ofpetitioners suffer from mental illness.”
Zhu Yufu (朱虞夫), 58, a Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province-based democracyactivist, was taken away by police on March 5. Officers also searched his homeand confiscated two computers and other items. Zhu was later criminallydetained on suspicion of “inciting subversion of state power.” Formerly aproperty manager at the Hangzhou City Shangcheng District Urban Housing Bureau,Zhu was convicted of “subversion of state power” in 1999 and served seven yearsin prison for founding the Opposition Party magazine, which carried articlesabout the China Democratic Party. After his release in 2006, he spoke outagainst the torture he suffered in prison and continued to promotedemocratization. He was detained again in 2007 after a confrontation with apolice officer who was questioning his son, and sentenced to two years inprison for "beating police and hindering public duty."
ZhuGengsheng (朱更生), Li Yujun (李玉君),Jiang Yaqun (姜亚群), Yang Pu (杨璞)Miao Deshun (苗德顺), five Tiananmen prisoners are stillsuffering and forced to engage in hard labour day and night today for 22 yearssince the 1989 Beijing Massacre 1989.
Tan Zuoren(谭作人) is a Sichuan-based activist and environmentalist.He was convicted of “inciting subversion of state power” after he organized aninvestigation into the deaths of children during the 2008 Sichuan earthquakeand attempted to assist parents of these children in their fight for justice.Tan is currently serving a five-year prison term.
Xu Wanping(许万平) has been repeatedly subjected to solitaryconfinement while held in Yuzhou Prison in Jiangbei District, Chongqing for thepast five years. The longest period of such confinement, reportedly in a cellso small that one cannot walk or stand up straight, lasted for 11 months. Xu'smental health is poor as a result of repeated solitary confinement, and hisphysical health is also poor; he suffers from a gastrointestinal condition andother illnesses. Xu has been denied release on medical parole despite repeatedrequests, and has reportedly been unable to receive adequate medical attentionwhile incarcerated. Xu, who founded “China Action Party” after the TiananmenMassacre in 1989, is currently serving a 12-year sentence for "incitingsubversion of state power," and previously spent terms of eight years inprison and three years in a Re-education through Labor (RTL) camp for hisactivism. (CHRD)
WangBingzhang (王炳章), a veteran US-based Chinese democracyactivist has been sentenced to life in prison in 2003. Wang was abducted byChinese security forces along the border of China and Vietnam in 2002.
YangTongyan (杨同彦, aka Yang Tianshui [杨天水]),a writer, is critically ill, raise serious concerns about the treatment ofdetainees in Chinese prisons and detention centers. Yang, currently serving a12-year sentence for “subversion of state power” in Nanjing Prison, has beenhospitalized since mid-September 2009. Yang is ill with a myriad of illnesses,which include intestinal tuberculosis, tuberculous peritonitis, diabetes,kidney inflammation, and high blood pressure.
ChenGuangcheng （ 陈光诚）, Chen’s wife Yuan Weijing, Gao Zhisheng （高智晟）,Liu Xiaobo （刘晓波）, and Liu’s wife Liu Xia, Guo Quan (郭泉), Qin Yongmin (秦永敏) ， Hu Jia (胡佳) and Gedhun ChoekyiNyima among others.
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.