PRIOR URGENT ACTIONS


Zhang Jinfeng (female) is a Jinan city, Shandong province based activist and organizer. She is a long-time activist who have been working predominantly with petitioners and the issues of land rights, forced evictions and unlawful demolition of people's homes. On March 5, 2009 she organized a demonstration in Jinan to protest the government's refusal to address the growing volume of petitions against the government's forced demolition and eviction of hundreds of people without proper compensation. On the same day she was taken into police custody. On March 17, she was sentenced to 1 year and 9 months of re-education through labor. She is set to be released in December, 2010.

Hu Bai (male) (pseudonym) is a Beijing-based human rights defender who has been active since the early 90's. Hu joined the pro-democracy Da Tong Party (later merging with the New Democracy Party) and worked to advocate pro-democratic reforms . Due to Hu's involvement with democracy advocacy, he was imprisoned for over three years, convicted of "inciting to subvert state power". In 2008 Hu assisted with organization and advocacy on behalf of the Human Rights Torch relay in Guangdong province. Several of the participants are now incarcerated in RTL camps, some others are in hiding. Police came after Hu, who had to flee the province and have since not been able to maintain a livelihood because of police harassment.

Hou Wenzhuo (female), women Human Rights defender and founder and director of now defunct Chinese rights group Empowerment and Rights Institute (仁之泉工作室), has suffered continued surveillance, harassment and her family intimidation, trying to get her to cease her Human Rights related work.

Hou is a longtime Human Rights defender, participating in her first demonstration in Chengdu during the political upheaval in 1989, where she partook in a delegation to the province's governor with demands for further reform. Hou as since that time been an active Human Rights defender, working especially with issues concerning petitioners and migrant workers, international outreach and land- and election rights.

Chen Daojun (male), a journalist and essayist, was detained on May 9 2008, and later arrested on the charge of inciting splittism. Chen had previously written articles about the need for government reform, the reason behind the Tibet riots, and about anti-western sentiment in China. A thorough legal analysis by Chen's lawyer Zhu Jiuhu (朱久虎) clarified that no laws had in any way been broken, and that Chen was arrested on political grounds.

Chen was sentenced to three years imprisonment and three years of deprivation of political rights on November 21, under a new charge; “inciting to subvert state power”.

Fan Songping (female) (pseudonym), a women Human Rights defender, worked to promote the “Human Rights Torch” campaign in Guangdong province during the first half of 2008, and was as a result of that work forced to again flee her home town and go into hiding.

Also see the OLYMPIAN REPRISALS report which deals with persecution of participants in Guangdong province Human Rights Torch relay.

  • Hou Wenzhuo 侯文卓

Hou Wenzhuo (female), women Human Rights defender and founder and director of now defunct Chinese rights group Empowerment and Rights Institute (仁之泉工作室), was put under house detention by the State Protection Bureau of the Police on May 24, 2008 during the US-China Human Rights Dialogue. On May 30, two days after the Dialogue ended, she was kidnapped from a café that the Police had told her to go to for a talk. Hou was imprisoned at China's most famous jail for Political prisoners, Qincheng prison, until June 16,imprisoned under the term of "Surveillance under Residence“, however, her full personal liberty and freedom were deprived-which is a clear violation of the term and the stipulation of Chinese Criminal Procedure law. No charges were put forth during her imprisonment, and Police worked to intimidate her.

Hou lived under continued Police monitoring until after the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Her case was widely reported. Hou Wenzhuo has been the victim of several rights violations, first in 1989, and then in 2005, 2006 and 2008. Amnesty International awarded Hou with attendance at the 2005 Sri Lanka Human Rights Conference.


Cases undertaken prior to the group's formation, by one or several of it's current members.


  • Fan Songping 范颂平

Fan Songping (female) (pseudonym), a women rights defender from Foshan, Guangdong province, was forced into hiding in mid-2006 after Police sought her out for an arrest on political grounds. Earlier Su had been interrogated, and when several other prominent activists from the same area were detained, Su fled. The police then notified the family that they were collecting evidence against her. Su also worked with fellow activists to collect 3000 signatures for impeachment of the corrupt local leaders.

The presence of a lawyer helped to reduce the motivation of the Police, who backed down shortly after.

  • Liu Jie 刘杰

Liu Jie (felame) is a long-time human rights defender and rural activist from Beian City, Heilongjiang Province. In mid-2006 Liu Jie was detained by the Police.

After extensive legal consultation and negotiations with the Police, Liu Jie was released.

Liu Jie organized a open letter to the 17th Party Congress in 2007 calling for government reform, signed by 12,150 petitioners. Three days later she was detained by Police. On November 12 the same year she was sent to Re-education Through Labor (RTL) for instigating trouble and disturbing public order. On December 20, 2007 she applied for administrative review to repeal the decision, but the appeal was denied. On May 22, 2008 she was transferred to the Harbin Drug Rehabilitation Centre, presumably as punishment for complaining about detention facility conditions.

  • Chen Guangcheng 陈光诚

In July 2006 a rescue action was launched on behalf of Chen Guangcheng (male), sentenced on April 24 to a prison term of four years and three months for “organizing a mob to disrupt traffic”. The mob in this case was a class-action lawsuit against the city of Linyi, Shandong province, over their policy of forced abortions and sterilizations, which Chen at the time was working to expose. Hu Jia (胡佳), who supported Chen's work, was beaten at roughly the same time.

Lawyer Teng Biao (滕彪) went to investigate Chen’s situation, and gathered evidence of misconduct.

In September 2005, Chen was abducted by the authorities and placed under house arrest, and has continuously suffered from harassment due to his work.

  • Li Yuhai 李玉海

Li Yuhai (male), petitioner leader from Anhui province, earlier a petitioner, was in kidnapped by the State Security Bureau of Beijing on July 2, 2005 and was placed in detention for 18 days. While in prison, all Police officers refused to reveal their identities. Li was seriously tortured during his imprisonment.

Li later got 10,000 RMB in compensation for initial medical treatment Li needed after being released. The police later apologized for their action, and in a spectacular turn of events the chief police officer in charge of the case was removed from his post.

Li has worked to help petitioners find housing and provided food, clothes, bedding and other goods and services to petitioners in Beijing's petitioner village. Li has also been active in providing information to journalists and human rights group on the situation of petitioners and the petitioner village.

  • Hou Wenzhuo 侯文卓

Hou Wenzhuo (female), women human rights defender and founder and director of now defunct Chinese rights group Empowerment and Rights Institute (仁之泉工作室), was put under increased pressure in late 2005, as monitoring increased, her home was raided, her organization's office was raided, and several colleagues were harassed, and some were detained.

In November Hou flew to the United States, before coming back to China in April 2006.

Hou Wenzhou has been the victim of several rights violations, first in 1989, and then in 2005, 2006 and 2008. Amnesty International awarded Hou with attendance at the 2005 Sri Lanka Human Rights Conference.

  • Zhu Jiuhu 朱久虎

Zhu Jiuhu (male), a lawyer at Beijing Jietong Law Firm, was arrested by Jingbian county Police on May 26. 17 Police officers arrived at the Shoufin hotel. Yulin city, Jianbian county where he was staying, and seven officers entered his room and arrested him without presenting an arrest warrant.

Zhu was arrested for providing legal counseling to investors in a private oilfield in Shaanxi province which was unlawfully taken over by the government. The warrant received by his wife was issued on the 27th of the same month, and charged Zhu with “involvement in illegal gathering”, and “disruption of social order”. Zhu was held at the Jingbian County Police Detention Centre. On June 22, a formal declaration of arrest was made. On two occasions prior to that, his own legal counsel had been denied to meet with him, according to Police, because his situation was a matter of national security.

Zhu was held until September 19, when he was released on bail after agreeing not to work on the case any more, and under order not to leave Beijing, nor to speak to reports. Teng Biao (滕彪) from the Open Constitution Initiative and Gao Zhisheng went to provide legal counseling.

  • Yang Maodong 杨茂东 (a.k.a Guo Feixiong 郭飞雄)

Guo Feixiong (male), activist and human rights campaigner was imprisoned in September 2005 on charges of “disturbing the peace”. Guo was working as a legal adviser during the “Taishi Incident” in Guangdong province where villagers sought to remove a corrupt village leader from office. The “Taishi Incident” was a major event in the work of Chinese rights defenders, involving numerous activists, lawyers and human rights groups.

Guo was released on 27 December later that year, the charges were dropped.

Guo has since been detained many times, and was sentenced to five years of imprisonment on November 14, 2007 on charges of ““illegal business activity”. Guo is serving his term in Meizhou Prison, Guangdong Province. Guo has reportedly been seriously tortured during his imprisonment, including being beaten on his genitals with electric batons.

  • Dr. Li Baiguang 李柏光

Li Baiguang (male) has a BA in philosophy, Master in Political Science and Doctorate in Constitutional Law. Li is a legal scholar, writer, social activist and director of Qimin Research Center in Beijing, and a Senior Advisor in Beijing Anping Law Firm.

Li was detained in Fu'an city, Fujian province on December 14, 2004 while working to bring legal action on behalf of over 100,000 peasants who had been evicted from their land by their local government. Li was detained at the Fu'an Public Security Bureau’s detention center. During detention, Li was forced to endure extremely cold temperatures and not given enough food or treatment when he became sick. To get him released, his family was forced to pay a bribe in excess of 100,000 Yuan. He was never formally charged and was set free after 37 days of detention.


CHINESE URGENT ACTION WORKING GROUP
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