20 April, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 06/11/2012 15:08
HONG KONG - CHINA
More than 25 thousand in Hong Kong march to demand an investigation into the death of Li Wangyang
by Eugenia Zhang
Even a pro-Beijing deputy demands inquiry into death. According to the Chinese authorities, the Tiananmen dissident, now blind and deaf from torture in prison, "committed suicide". Two days ago he was cremated and buried. One demonstrator: Attempts to stiffle the democratic movement just like 23 years ago in Tiananmen.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) - Tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong marched to the China's central government office yesterday (June 10) to demand an investigation into the suspicious death of a pro-democracy dissident Li Wangyang in Hunan province, whose body was cremated on June 9 reportedly with consent of Li's family.

More than 30 organizations, comprising labor, women, Catholic, Protestant, student and political groups co-organized the protest. Organizers said 25,000 people took part in the march from Central district to the Chinese central government's Liaison Office in western district; whereas police claimed 5,400 protesters took part.

The protesters, mostly dressed in black, mourned the death of Li and demanded justice over his death, and demanded a release of all political dissidents, a halt to clamp down on pro-democracy movement in China and vindication of June 4, 1989 movement. Many protesters brought flowers and incense for Li.

The march, under a heat of 30 degrees Celsius, was led by a big photo of Li and a big banner with Chinese character "dian" (meaning libation), as being used in traditional Chinese funeral procession (see photo).

Li, 62, had spent 21 years in jail after the crackdown on the pro-democracy movement in Tiananmen Square in 1989. He joined the movement as a labor leader in Shaoyang, Hunan province, central China. Released in 2011, he had lost his sight and hearing, and became disabled because of the mistreatment he received while in jail.

In early June, Li was interviewed by a Hong Kong media on the occasion of the commemoration of the 23rd anniversary of June 4 massacre. Li firmly said he hoped to see a democratic China and an end to the one-party rule, and he did not regret taking part in the pro-democracy movement. "Even if my head is to be chopped, I do not regret," Li said.

Then, on June 6, Li was found dead, and local government officials alleged Li had committed suicide at his hospital bed. While the truth of his death was not clear, his body was removed quickly and cremated on June 10. The Chinese authorities claimed to have consent of his family, but Li's family could not be reached for confirmation. A friend of Li, who was tightly under surveillance, told the press by phone that he believed Li's family agreed to the cremation under great pressure from the government.

The Hong Kong protesters demanded the probe into the truth of Li's death and justice for Li and his family, and urged for release for all political dissidents and a halt to clamp down on pro-democracy movement.

Hong Kong pro-Beijing legislator, Ip Kwok-him, also a delegate of the National People's Congress, made a U-turn decision yesterday, saying he would write to the NPC chairman about a probe into Li case. Earlier, he said he would not pursue the case.

Wong, a driver, told AsiaNews that he protested because he deeply "respected Mr Li's strong will to have democracy in China and great suffering in jail in the past decades. A probe into his death must be done to give justice to him and his family. Twenty-three years ago, I saw from TV news how the pro-democracy movement developed and cracked down. It is a truth, then and now. We have a conscience to speak out for the justice for him and his family."

About 100 Catholic protesters held a short prayer for Li and his family as well as for all dissidents in China before they joined the march.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
07/02/2008 HONG KONG - CHINA
July 1 march less numerous, but still preoccupying for Beijing
06/28/2004 hong kong - china
Beijing tones down its rhetoric ahead of July 1
06/01/2009 HONG KONG – CHINA
Thousands march in Hong Kong to remember Tiananmen
by James Wang
12/06/2005 HONG KONG - CHINA
Chinese premier "concerned" after Hong Kong march
07/01/2004 HONG KONG – CHINA
Pro-Democracy Rally Shakes Up Hong Kong and China
by Theresa Ricci

Editor's choices
ITALY - ASIA
Easter, victory over death and impotence
by Bernardo Cervellera
SYRIA
I will miss you Fr Frans, you inspired us all, says Syrian Jesuit
by Tony Homsy*A young priest from the Society of Jesus remembers the life and work of Fr Frans van der Lugt, who was killed in Homs after he refused to abandon residents beleaguered by hunger and war. "He gave and continues to give everything for the Church, Syria, and peace. His story and qualities made him an exceptional missionary and witness to the Gospel." Reprinted courtesy of 'The Jesuit Post'.
FRANCE - IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch on the uncertain future of eastern Christians, a bridge between the West and Islam
by Mar Louis Raphael I SakoThe wars in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan have made things worse for their peoples, especially minorities. As Western policies have been a failure, fundamentalism has grown with the Arab Spring losing out to extremism. Muslim authorities have a role in protecting rights and religious freedom. The presence of Christians in the Middle East is crucial for Muslims.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.