Beijing admits holding Taiwanese rights activist

Lee Ming-che supports rights in mainland China. He was reported missing. Now that she knows that he is in jail, his wife has asked for the help of international organisations.

Beijing (AsiaNews) – A Taiwanese rights activist is being detained whilst under investigation by mainland authorities for activities they allege threaten China’s national security.

The Taiwan Affairs Office of China’s State Council confirmed on Wednesday that Lee Ming-che had been detained and was under investigation after he entered the mainland on 19 March.

Lee, 42, has been active in supporting human rights on the mainland and has regularly shared Taiwan’s democratic progress through his and other websites with viewers on the mainland.

He was reported missing after heading to Zhuhai, Guangdong province, from Macau.

His wife and friends have sought help from Taiwanese authorities and international organisations, including Amnesty International, to locate him.

“According to our understanding, Taiwan resident Lee Ming-che allegedly engaged in activities endangering our national security and is under investigation by relevant authorities,” said Ma Xiaoguang, a Taiwan Affairs Office spokesman.

Ma said Lee’s health was satisfactory.

That comment came after Lee’s wife, Lee Ching-yu, expressed concern on Tuesday that her husband might not have enough money for food or medications for his high blood pressure.

She called on mainland authorities to state publicly why they are detaining Lee.