Photographer Documenting Forced Labor & Tiananmen Massacre Secretly Detained (6/7-12, 2013)

China Human Rights Briefing

June 7-June 12, 2013

Contents

Reprisals Against Activists’ Family Members

  • Liu Xiaobo’s Brother-in-law Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison

Arbitrary Detention

  • Du Bin Held Incommunicado After Documenting Forced Labor, Tiananmen Massacre
  • Update: Arrests of Anti-Corruption Activists Bring Total to 11 in Ongoing Crackdown
  • Tibetans Sentenced for Holding Religious Rituals for Man Who Self-Immolated
  • Two Dissident Writers Criminally Detained

Reprisals Against Activists’ Family Members

Liu Xiaobo’s Brother-in-law Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison

Liu Hui (刘晖), brother-in-law of imprisoned dissident Liu Xiaobo (刘晓波), has been given an 11-year sentence on a concocted “fraud” charge in a move widely seen as further retaliation against the Nobel laureate and the activist’s wife, Liu Xia (刘霞). On June 9, representatives from foreign embassies and organizations as well as overseas journalists reportedly tried to observe the hearing at the Huairou District People’s Court in Beijing, but police blocked them from entering the courthouse. Liu Hui’s lawyer, Mo Shaoping (莫少平), defended his client’s innocence at the proceedings and has submitted an appeal. The manager of a real estate company in the southern city of Shenzhen, Liu Hui was first arrested and charged with fraud in April 2012. The authorities dropped the charge last September, but he was taken into custody again in January. Liu Xiaobo, who was detained in December 2008, is serving an 11-year sentence for “inciting subversion of state power,” and Liu Xia has been held under house arrest since her husband won the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2010.[1]

Arbitrary Detention

Du Bin Held Incommunicado After Documenting Forced Labor, Tiananmen Massacre

Photographer and documentary filmmaker Du Bin (杜斌) has been held incommunicado since Beijing police seized him at his home on May 31, and is reportedly facing a charge of “illegal publishing.” Du was apparently taken in for questioning for “disrupting the order of a public place,” and police confiscated his computer and some books. Du’s detention may well be reprisal for his recent documentary on abuses in the Masanjia Women’s Re-education through Labor camp (see film) and also a book he wrote on the Tiananmen Massacre, which came out in Hong Kong the week before he was seized. Police have not provided Du’s family with an arrest warrant or notification of criminal detention, and a summons and investigation notice found at his home were not properly dated by police or signed by Du. Du is being held at the Fengtai District Detention Center, where authorities have refused to let supporters see him. Du Bin has previously worked for The New York Times and published other works, including a photography book about petitioners in China.[2]

Update: Arrests of Anti-Corruption Activists Bring Total to 11 in Ongoing Crackdown

Three more arrests of anti-corruption campaigners have been confirmed—two in Beijing and one in Jiangxi Province—in connection with an ongoing crackdown on calls for top officials to reveal their personal wealth. In the capital, activists Sun Hanhui (孙含会) and Wang Yonghong (王永红) were formally arrested on May 22 and 24, respectively, after being taken into custody in mid-April. Sun is facing a charge of “unlawful assembly.” The charge against Wang has not been confirmed, but sources have told CHRD that he is being held either for “unlawful assembly” or “creating a disturbance.” Nine Beijing activists have now been arrested in the crackdown. Sun and Wang are being held at the Beijing No. 3 Detention Center.

In Jiangxi, activist Li Sihua (李思华) has been arrested on suspicion of “unlawful assembly” in Xinyu City. Seized on April 27, Li was first held on suspicion of “inciting subversion of state power” and is being detained at the Fenyi County Detention Center. Among the five activists taken into custody in Jiangxi with ties to anti-corruption advocacy, Li and Liu Ping (刘萍) are known to have been arrested while three others remain in custody. Besides pushing for officials to disclose their assets, the Xinyu activists had called for the Chinese government to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.[3]

Tibetans Sentenced for Holding Religious Rituals for Man Who Self-Immolated

Two Tibetan monks in Qinghai Province have reportedly been given three-year prison sentences for holding religious rituals and prayer services for a Tibetan man who self-immolated in November 2012. On April 18, the Xunhua (Tibetan: Yazi) County People’s Court handed down the punishments to Tsondue and Gedun Tsultrim. Two days after Wangchen Norbu burned to death during his protest against Chinese rule last November 19, monks from Beudo Monastery in Tongren (Tibetan: Rebkong) County organized a prayer service and religious rituals for him. Police tried to stop a procession to Wangchen Norbu’s home, and then detained Tsondue, Gedun Tsultrim, and other monks who continued to offer condolences and prayers. The two monks who have been sentenced have been held incommunicado during their entire detention. Their punishments reflect the government’s criminalization of activities tied to self-immolations, which was prescribed in an official guideline issued last December.[4]

Two Dissident Writers Criminally Detained

Two Chinese writers taken into custody at the time of the June Fourth anniversary have been criminally detained. Police took Hubei writer and activist Du Daobin (杜导斌) from a hotel in Beijing on June 3 and detained him the next day on suspicion of “creating a disturbance,” allegedly for posting tweets commenting on assassinations during the Qing Dynasty. Du is being held at Beijing No. 1 Detention Center, where lawyer Liu Xiaoyuan (刘晓原) was able to visit him. In 2004, Du was convicted of “inciting subversion of state power” for publishing articles online and sentenced to three years’ imprisonment, a punishment commuted to four years’ probation. A court eventually sent Du to prison when the probation period was about to end in 2008.

In addition, dissident writer Zheng Qiuwu (郑酋午) and his wife have been criminally detained on “illegal business activity” charges. On June 4, Zheng was seized in Zhejiang Province and forcibly returned to Hainan, where he has been residing. His wife was taken into custody on May 31 in Hainan. Zheng may have been detained for evading police surveillance when he went to Zhejiang, where he had reportedly gone to look for work. The couple is being held at the Wenchang City Detention Center, and their children have refused to sign their detention notices. In 1983, Zheng Qiuwu was sentenced to 14 years in prison for organizing the “Democratic Alliance of China.”[5]

[1] China Sentences Brother-in-Law of Nobel Laureate to 11 Years on Fraud Charges, June 9, 2013, The New York Times; “Chinese Government Sentences Liu Hui, Younger Brother of Liu Xiaobo’s Wife, to 11 Years In Jail” (中国以欺诈罪判囚刘晓波妻弟刘晖11年), June 9, 2013, BBC; “Younger Brother of Liu Xiaobo’s Wife, Liu Hui’s Case Will Be Tried On April 23” (刘晓波妻弟刘晖一案订于本月23日开庭审理), April 12, 2013, WQW

[2]“Guangzhou Rights Activist Jia Pin Disappeared, Photographer and Writer Du Bin Arrested”(广州维权人士贾榀失踪,摄影作家杜斌被抓), June 8, 2013, WQW

[3] “Xinyu, Jiangxi Activist Liu Ping Arrested for ‘Unlawful Assembly’” (江西新余维权人士刘萍被以“非法集会罪”逮捕), June 5, 2013, WQW;“Police Send ’Inciting Subversion’ Case of Liu Ping to Procuratorate for Approval, Authorities Reject Lawyer’s Application to Meet Her” (刘萍“煽动颠覆案”警方报请检察院批捕,律师申请会见遭拒), May 30, 2013, WQW;“Beijing Rights Activist Zhao Changqing Arrested for ‘Unlawful Assembly’” (北京维权人士赵常青被以“非法集会罪”逮捕), May 24, 2013, WQW; “Lawyer Applies to Meet With Li Sihua, Criminally Detained for ‘Inciting Subversion of State Power’” (律师申请会见被以 “涉嫌煽动颠覆罪”刑事拘留的李思华), May 16, 2013, WQW; “Human Rights Defense Network Solemnly Protest Citizens Detained by Authorities in Beijing and Jiangxi for ‘Demanding Officials Disclose Assets’” (“维权网”严正抗议北京和江西当局拘捕“要求官员公布财产”的公民), May 8, 2013, WQW; “Jiangxi Human Rights Activist Liu Ping Criminally Detained on Charge of ‘Inciting Subversion of State Power’” (江西维权人士刘萍因“涉嫌煽动颠覆罪”被刑事拘留), May 8, 2013, WQW; “News Flash: Well-known Rights Activist Liu Ping Criminally Detained on Charge of ‘Inciting Subversion of State Power’” (快讯:著名维权人士刘萍因涉嫌煽动颠覆国家政权罪被刑事拘留), May 7, 2013, WQW; “Human Rights Activists in Xinyu, Jiangxi Province Tortured in Custody, Many Still Detained, Including Liu Ping” (江西新余被拘押维权人士遭酷刑,刘萍等多人仍未获释), April 29, 2013, WQW; “Human Rights Activists in Xinyu, Jiangxi Province Tortured in Custody, Many Still Detained, Including Liu Ping” (江西新余被拘押维权人士遭酷刑,刘萍等多人仍未获释), April 29, 2013, WQW; Chinese Authorities Must Release Activists, End Escalating Crackdown on Free Expression, April 19, 2013, CHRD; “Urgent Attention: Beijing Lawyer Ding Jiaxi Taken Away By Police, Hefei Doctor Yin Chunsheng Also Seized” (紧急关注:北京律师丁家喜被警察带走,合肥尹春生博士也被抓), April 18, 2013, WQW; “Special Attention: Beijing Rights Activists Zhao Changqing, Ding Jiaxi Taken Away By Police” (特别关注:北京维权人士赵常青、律师丁家喜同时被警方带走), April 18, 2013, WQW

[4] “Two monks sentenced to 3 yrs in prison for holding prayers for self-immolator,” June 5, 2013, TCHRD

[5] “Zheng Qiuwu, Wife Detained for ‘Illegal Business Activity,’ Family Refuses to Sign Notice” (郑酋午夫妇被以“非法经营”罪名刑拘,家属拒签字),June 12, 2013, WQW;

“Hainan Writer Zheng Qiuwu, Wife Criminally Detained For ‘Illegal Business Activity’” (海南作家郑酋午夫妇被以“非法经营”罪刑事拘留), June 10, 2013, WQW; “Hainan Dissident Writer Zheng Qiuwu, Wife Detained” (海南异议作家郑酋午夫妇被拘押), June 8, 2013, WQW; “Beijing Lawyer Liu Xiaoyuan Meets Writer Du Daobin Under Criminal Detention in Detention Center” (北京律师刘晓原在看守所会见被刑拘政论作家杜导斌), June 8, 2013, WQW

 

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