22 December, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

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





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


» 07/24/2012
CHINA
The battle for democracy in China is changing gear
A group of Chinese lawyers asks the regime to shed light on the death of Li Wangyang and to end the suspicious deaths in custody, the blind dissident Li Guizhi is helped to escape and hid from government repression, activists in Hong Kong are increasingly asking Beijing for democracy and human rights. The communist regime reacts the same way: forced labour and summary arrests. But while dialogue with the United States seems at a standstill, the movement inside the China appears increasingly determined.

Beijing (AsiaNews) - The desire for democracy and human rights for all is increasingly taking hold in China, where dissidents and activists are no longer afraid to ask for transparency into cases of abuse and no longer fear to hide their comrades to protect them from the vengeance of the government. Which, to this new page of Chinese social history, reacts with the usual wave of repression and violations.

The signs of this new phase are varied. A group of lawyers on mainland China and Hong Kong have written an open letter to ask the government to reopen the investigation into the "accidental" death of dissident Li Wangyang, which police claimed was a "suicide" despite much evidence to the contrary. Moreover, Li Guizhi's friends - blind activist who escaped from an illegal prison in which she had been imprisoned after seeking justice for her dead son - have managed to hide her from police.

At the same time, however, Chinese authorities have jailed a couple of dissidents who had participated in the march for democracy and human rights in the Territory - the traditional July 1 appointment - and sentenced them to one year in prison. And the annual Sino-US Dialogue on Human Rights, which opened yesterday in Washington, this year seems doomed bring to little or nothing: the upcoming U.S. elections and the change of guard in Beijing (appointments scheduled for October and November ) have removed any semblance of usefulness to the meetings.

The case of Li Wangyang's death is the most emblematic. Li, a trade unionist since the early 1980s, spent 13 years in prison on charges of being a "counterrevolutionary" for leading an independent federation of workers in Shaoyang during the 1989 demonstrations. After his release for medical reasons in 2000, he was sentenced to another 10 years for "subversion".

He was found hanged last June 6 in a hospital room while he was under police control on the anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre, which falls on June 4. The social protest that has swept China has forced the authorities to reopen the case, but this has failed to provide any results [see. Hunan authorities reopen Li Wangyang's case: it was not suicide].

Now, ten lawyers have written to the National People's Assembly to emphasize the "illogical conclusions of the police report. Li was almost blind and was very weak: he could not possibly have made those complicated movements that led to his death. Added to this the fact that his body was  cremated soon after the discovery despite the objections of his family, and this goes against national laws and procedures. "

Wang Quanping, lawyer and signatory of the letter who lives in the province of Guangdong, said: "Li was a freedom fighter. He spent more than 20 years in jail but he never abandoned his ideals and his dreams. Now, after his release, he would kill himself?. No one would believe this story. "

According to Beijing lawyer Qilei Lin, this is a standard procedure: "I have had many cases like this. Clients of mine have died mysteriously in detention centers or other places, and their deaths were then labeled 'suicides. After Li Wangyang's death, these fallacies can no longer be accepted. We have to initiate systematic measures to eliminate these kinds of wrongs. "

However, the regime's response to the demands of freedom is always the same. The authorities of Jiangxi Province yesterday sentenced Song Ningsheng and Zeng Jiuzi to 1 year of hard labor. The two dissidents engaged in a battle for justice after the death of their wives, who died in illegal hospitals. The two had traveled to Hong Kong to join the 400 thousand who marched July 1 to ask Beijing to democracy and human rights.

In all this, the meeting between the Chinese and the American authorities in Washington for the annual human rights dialogue seems destined to bear no fruit. The human rights groups operating in America have asked the Obama administration to pressure China to stop the repression in Tibet and respect human rights in the country.

But the upcoming presidential elections in the United States in November and the Congress of the Communist Party in October, which will kick off the fifth generation of leaders rob this meeting of any political weight.

 


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
04/30/2011 CHINA
Chinese authorities free one dissident, while another "disappears"
12/12/2008 CHINA
Arrests continue for signers of Charter 08
04/28/2009 CHINA
Falun Gong members commemorate 10 years of persecution in China
08/05/2009 CHINA
Fujian activists arrested for "false accusations" against the government over the death of a girl
07/07/2011 CHINA
Beijing arrests while the West (partner in crime) sleeps
by Wei Jingsheng

Editor's choices
IRAQ - VATICAN
As 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' continues, Mosul bishop notes that Jesus is born amid refugee containers
by Amel NonaPersecuted by the Islamic state, refugees have lost everything: belongings, home, jobs, school, and their future. Yet, their faith and mission remain strong. For them, almost 900,000 euros have been raised and sent. Pope Francis sends a message of closeness. The campaign continues according to the Patriarch of Baghdad's proposal of fasting and moderation at Christmas and New Year, with the money saved offered to the Christians of Mosul.
IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch calls for fasting on Christmas Eve for refugees' return to Mosul
by Joseph MahmoudMar Louis Sako calls on the faithful not to celebrate Christmas and New Year in a "worldly" fashion, with pomp and abundance, out of solidarity with the people who fled the Nineveh plains, persecuted by the Islamic Army. AsiaNews is joining the fast proposed by the Patriarch and calls on all readers to give what they would have otherwise spent in support of the campaign 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul'.
IRAQ - ITALY
Letter from Archbishop of Mosul: Thank you for your aid, supporting the plight of refugees
by Amel NonaThe donations made through the "Adopt a Christian from Mosul" campaign are used to buy food, warm clothes, blankets for refugees and rent houses or caravans given the early onset of winter and. Two women have defended their Christian faith before the Islamist militants who wanted to convert them, despite the threat of death. A refugee among refugees, Msgr. Nona discovers a new way of being a pastor.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
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.