CRD Protest Five-Year Sentence of Internet Writer Zhang LinComments Off on CRD Protest Five-Year Sentence of Internet Writer Zhang Lin
CRD and Citizen Rights Defense Net (CRDN) protests the sentence of Internet writer Zhang Lin to five years in prison and four years deprivation of political rights by Bengbu Municipal Intermediate People’s Court in Anhui Province on 28 July 2005. (See Appendix, Bengbu Municipal Intermediate People’s Court, “Zhang Lin ‘Criminal Trial Verdict,’ No. 30, 2005) CRD finds this heavy sentence blatantly violates the right to freedom of speech protected under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and under the PRC Constitution. CRD calls on relevant authorities in the Chinese government to release Zhang Lin immediately without condition and restore his political rights.
CRDN has in the past months protested the arrest of Mr. Zhang on 27 January 2005 at the Bengbu train station in Anhui Province, and hoped that his trial on charge of “suspicion of endangering national security” would be fair.
The Bengbu Intermediate People’s Court’s sentence was issued on 28 July 2005, but authorities withheld the verdict from Mr.Zhang’s lawyer until August 2nd, five days later, half way into the ten-day limit on the time during which the defendant could appeal their sentence. Mr. Zhang has filed an appeal.
CRD and CRDN protest the verdict of five year sentence and four years deprivation of political rights issued by the court against Zhang Lin. CRD alerts the public that the imprisonment of Zhang Lin violates the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which the PRC signed in 1998, as well as the PRC Constitution, all of which specifically guarantee the right to freedom of speech. CRD calls on the Chinese government to honor its commitments and free Zhang Lin immediately and unconditionally.
August 4, 2005