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    » 01/02/2012, 00.00

    CHINA

    Beijing confirms arrest of Christian dissident Gao Zhisheng



    After 20 months of total silence, the regime sends a letter to the lawyer’s brother to communicate his detention in a prison in the remote province of Xinjiang. For 2012, activists fear a worsening human rights situation in the country.
    Beijing (AsiaNews) - The Communist regime in Beijing has confirmed for the first time in 20 months that the lawyer Gao Zhisheng is in a prison in the western province of Xinjiang. Gao is a Christian who has long defended freedom for all social and religious minorities in China: arrested in February of 2009, he had vanished into thin air.

    The confirmation of his detention was communicated to his brother Gao Zhiyi: "I received a letter this morning informing me that my brother is in prison Shaya". However, the prison is unreachable by telephone, and the Office of the Shaya County Public Safety says he knows nothing about this case.

    Last month, the Beijing regime Xinhua news agency, had confirmed a new arrest for Gao guilty of "violating the terms of his probation." But did not provide any other details. The choice of the prison was possibly made with a view to prevent visits to the detainee: Xinjiang is a very remote and difficult to reach province.

    Gao Zhisheng is one of the most respected figures in the world of Chinese dissidents. After a brilliant legal career - he was named one of "Ten Best Lawyers in China" - he converted to Christianity and decided to work on his own to defend in court all those who were accused on trumped up charges because of their demands for democracy and justice.

    The confirmation of his arrest, however, is far from comforting for the present situation. According to many activists still living in China, as well as those living abroad, 2012 could be even worse than the previous year in terms of respect for human rights. According to Hu Ping, director of the Beijing Spring, "it gets worse from year to year."

    Gao's case "along with Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo and the blind activist Chen Guangcheng have characterized 2011. But nothing suggests an improvement in the future. The regime continues to deny the rights of anyone looking for justice or democracy. "
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    See also

    12/10/2009 CHINA
    Activist detained for hours for "anti-revolutionary" slogan on T-shirt
    The writing deemed "dangerous" criticized "the one party dictatorship" and was by Liu Xiaoqi. The campaign against the slogans on t-shirts long before the Olympics last year. Victims also members of Charter 08.

    13/03/2009 CHINA
    Human rights award for Liu Xiaobo and for Charter 08
    The prize for Liu, under house arrest since December, is intended to recognize his struggle for human rights and freedom of speech. Meanwhile, the family of the activist lawyer Gao Zhisheng has fled to the United States, and is denouncing constant intimidation and torture.

    27/08/2009 CHINA
    Liaoning: activist arrested and beaten for defending Falun Gong members
    Yonghang Wang, a lawyer, was arrested for "using a cult seeking to damage the legal and social system." Beatings suffered at the time arrested led to a broken ankle. In prison he suffered further violence. A new case of violation of human rights which contrasts with the recent release of two activists.

    13/01/2012 CHINA
    Christian activist and writer Yu Jie flees to the U.S.
    He is the author of a book against Wen Jiabao, accused of being a hypocrite, "the beautiful face of the regime", which does not keep any promises. The awarding of the Nobel to Liu Xiaobo (friend of Yu Jie), has resulted in torture, controls and restrictions on the freedom of writing and religion. Yu is responsible for an underground Protestant community in Beijing.

    18/03/2010 CHINA
    Beijing admits: Gao Zhisheng "was sentenced"
    The Christian lawyer, targeted by authorities for his fights for human rights and religious freedom, has vanished into thin air since February 2009. The authorities admit for the first time he was sentenced for subversion against the state. The protests of the international community.



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