Category Archives: Special Topics

An ‘absurd verdict’: Jail terms for China activists who voiced support for Hong Kong’s pro-democracy Occupy protests

Two activists who voiced support on social media for Hong Kong’s pro-democracy Occupy protests in 2014 have been sentenced to jail terms by a court in Guangdong, south China, on Friday.

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Lee Ming-che’s wife says he’s in detention in China

2017/03/28 16:29:19

Taipei, March 28 (CNA) The wife of Taiwanese human rights advocate Lee Ming-che (李明哲) said Tuesday she had been informed that her husband was under arrest in China and she would like to visit him. Continue reading

Canada, 10 other countries call out China for torturing human rights lawyers

BEIJING — The Globe and Mail,Published Last updated

Eleven countries have jointly called on the Chinese government to investigate reports of torture against human rights lawyers and urged Beijing to abandon a controversial detention system that holds suspects in secret locations for months at a time. Continue reading

HRC34 | Urge China to amend laws, investigate torture and release detained defenders

In Geneva, it does not go entirely unnoticed that China continues to engage in a sustained crackdown which aims to gag, discredit, or intimidate into silence virtually any dissenting voices in the country. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in his annual global update to the UN’s top human rights body, raised a number of serious concerns in Asian countries. On China specifically, he deplored ‘the intimidation and detention of lawyers and activists who seek the good of their community and nation’ and added: ‘I am also disturbed by cases of restrictions on cultural and religious rights, particularly in Xinjiang and Tibet’. Continue reading

Julia Lovell: The Cultural Revolution on Trial by Alexander Cook review – a sensational moment in Chinese history

Yao Wenyuan

Irrational premise … Yao Wenyuan, a writer and member of the Gang of Four, is tried in 1980. Photograph: Tang Likui/AP

China’s civil society has suffered badly in the political crackdown of the last four years: journalists are stifled by ever-tightening constraints; intellectuals are nervous of even saying the president’s name in company, for fear of being seen as denigrating the cult of “Uncle Xi”. Above all, the Chinese Communist party (CCP) has rained down blows on the rule of law. Legal personnel have been held for months in “black” prisons without access to counsel and been shackled, tortured, their family members harassed. On 14 January this year, China’s chief justice aggressively emphasised that the law was subservient to party writ: “We should resolutely resist erroneous influence from the west: ‘constitutional democracy’, ‘separation of powers’ and ‘independence of the judiciary’. We must make clear our stand and dare to show the sword.” Continue reading

Chinese Attorney Defends Torture Report Amid Accusations of ‘Fake News’

Screenshot of detained lawyer Jiang Tianyong

Screenshot of detained lawyer Jiang Tianyong in interview with Beijing-backed satellite broadcaster Phoenix TV in which Jiang inaccurately stated he made up claims his client Xie Yang, another detained lawyer, was tortured, March 2, 2017. Public domain

Claims by official Chinese media that allegations of torture meted out to jailed human rights lawyer Xie Yang were “fake news” cooked up to appeal to “Western media tastes” were rejected by his defense lawyer on Thursday. Continue reading

Hong Kong daily Sing Pao says its journalists and website are under attack

New York, February 22, 2017–The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on Hong Kong authorities to investigate the harassment of journalists at the daily Sing Pao. Sing Pao Media Enterprises, which owns the paper, released a statement yesterday saying that staff have been followed and harassed, and that the newspaper’s computer system was attacked. Continue reading

‘My Brother Has Been Appallingly Treated’

Zhu Xiaoyan, the U.S.-based sister of veteran jailed democracy activist Zhu Yufu, has called on the ruling Chinese Communist Party to end the beatings and mistreatment meted out to her brother in prison. Continue reading