» 10/08/2011, 00.00
Fears for fate of Chen Guangcheng, the blind activist against forced abortions
Some say that he might have died of torture and lack of medical care. A year after his release from prison, he is in forced isolation in his house with his wife and six year old daughter who can not go to school. Anyone who tries to contact him, is beaten and arrested. Shandong authorities have built a prison-house for him. Wrwf appeal and petition for news of Chen’s health.
Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Unconfirmed voices in Shandong say that the blind activist Chen Guangcheng might be dead. The fears are compounded by the fact that some days ago, some activists who wanted to meet their friend, were arrested and isolated. According to some reports from Canyu, the authorities fired at the activists.
Chen Guangcheng has been campaigning for years against forced abortions and sterilizations in Shandong. After the complaint of 130 thousand cases of operations forced by the family planning authorities in the province, he was sentenced to four years and three months. Released in September of last year, since then the authorities have forced him into total isolation with his wife and his six year old daughter, unable to go to school. His other son, aged eight, lives with his grandparents.
In February, Chen managed to send a video abroad in which he denounces his detention despite having served his sentence of four years (Chen Guangcheng 10/02/2011: "Chen Guangcheng, practically still in prison"
). Neither he nor his wife can leave the house, their phone is cut off, their friends kept away. For this reason, the police proceeded to beat him and threaten his wife.
Just as with the activists a few days ago, foreign journalists who tried to approach his house, were also beaten and their equipment seized (17/02/2011 Foreign reporters roughed up in front of Chen Guangcheng’s home
Some activist friends told the South China Morning Post that the Shandong authorities have completed a house in July in the village of Dongshigu (Linyi), where they think they have shut Chen and his wife up. The house is secluded and surrounded by a high wall and will be monitored day and night by security.
Even relatives are banned from visiting Chen.
Worried about his health and his life, the NGO Womens'rights without frontiers (Wrwf) has launched a campaign for news on the fate of Chen, with a petition (see here
). "We are alarmed at the news reported by villagers, according to whom Chen was already dead," said the president of Wrwf, Reggie Littlejohn. "If Chen is dead - he adds - then the Chinese Communist Party is fully responsible for killing him under torture, denying him medical care, starving him to death. If Chen is alive, we strongly urge that he and his family are released immediately and unconditionally to see a doctor for treatment. "
Shandong: Blind activist appeals verdict of farcical trial
The lawyers of Chen Guangcheng, who is renowned for revealing forced abortions in the province, claim his trial was riddled with illegalities and that testimonies were "obtained by torture".
Shandong: fresh violence targets blind activist cause
The lawyer of Chen Guangcheng, an imprisoned activist famed for his battles against forced abortion, was beaten and robbed together with his assistant, while the police of Linyi looked on.
24/06/2013 TAIWAN - CHINA
Chen Guangcheng arrives in Taiwan: a journey "for freedom"
After a year in New York the blind dissident, who campaigns against forced abortions and sterilizations in China, arrived in Taipei where "at least one university" could host it as a visiting student. No comment from Beijing for now.
Shandong: blind activist condemned to four years in prison
Chen Guangcheng, who denounced forced abortions in his home province, was found guilty of damaging a car and blocking traffic. Yesterday, sentence was also handed down to Zhao Yan, accused of revealing state secrets abroad: three years for "fraud".
Blind activist Chen Guangcheng, escapes from prison. Risk of summary executions
Chen denounced forced abortions and sterilizations and expropriation against farmers for years. There is the risk of reprisals and summary justice of the police against him and his family. The video of his forced captivity.
VATICAN - USA
Pope to Trump: America’s greatness is measured by its attention to the poor
Pope Francis exalts the "rich spiritual and ethical values that have shaped the history of the American people” and the nation’s “commitment to the advancement of human dignity and freedom worldwide ". Concerns " for the poor, the outcast and those in need who, like Lazarus, stand before our door ". The oath Trump preceded by various prayers of Catholic, Protestant, Jewish Representatives. The slogan "America first" will guide political choices. String criticism of the establishment. China’s caution and the enthusiasm of the president of Taiwan.
CHINA - UNITED STATES
The Trump era begins: The China-US relationship and the risk of war
As the inauguration ceremony of the Trump presidency approaches, the Propaganda Bureau of the Chinese Communist Party has banned all journalists from “unauthorized criticism" of Trump’ words and deeds. According to the great dissident Wei Jingsheng there is a chance that Trump will force China into fair trade deals, possibly leading to political and legal reforms. A trade war is an option.
20/01/2017 CHINA - UNITED STATES
AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!
AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.