The well-known human rights lawyer served a sentence of over four years. After his term of imprisonment, he was put on lockdown in Shandong because of the coronavirus. On April 26, he attempted to reach his wife, who was hospitalized. It is not clear whether he will be able to stay in Beijing with loved ones. Suspicion of torture in prison.
Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - After a long period in captivity, Wang Quanzhang re-embraced his wife and son in Beijing yesterday. On April 5, having finished serving a sentence of over 4 years for "subversion against the state", the well-known Chinese human rights lawyer had been confined to his hometown Jinan (Shandong).
After two weeks of quarantine, justified by the authorities as a coronavirus prevention measure, Wang was still prevented from moving for another 7 days. He says he was kept under close surveillance during this time.
The dissident shared the video of his return home on Twitter. Family reunions are believed to have been permitted due to the poor health of his wife Li Wenzu. On April 26, when Li was in the hospital, Wang attempted to reach Beijing, but the police stopped him and brought him back to Jinan.
She fought long to free her husband. In protest of the conviction, she shaved her head, organized marches, protests and demonstrations. Because of this, she was subjected to death threats and house arrest.
Wang was escorted to Beijing by police officers. It is not yet clear whether he will be allowed to stay with loved ones. He had been arrested in 2015 in a security operation called "709" (since it began on July 9 of that year), which had affected 300 other colleagues - including some Protestant and Catholic Christians. Many of them were tried and then sentenced; several have "confessed" their guilt in videos; others emerged from prison physically and psychologically shaken, because of the torture they were subjected to.
Wang had defended political activists (including members of the New Citizens Movement), underground Christian communities, Falun Gong faithful (an outlawed spiritual movement in China) and peasants who were victims of illegal expropriations. For more than three years his family has had no news of him, and no lawyer has been able to assist him. Then, in early 2019, he was sentenced by the Tianjin Intermediate Court.
Many activists suspect that Wang suffered torture and mistreatment during his captivity. So far, the dissident hasn't wanted to say anything on the subject.