Detained for Resisting Forced Eviction, Beijing Activist Ni Yulan Goes on Trial

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(Chinese Human Rights Defenders, July 28, 2008) – CHRD learned that Ni Yulan (倪玉兰), a Beijing-based housing rights activist and former lawyer, will be tried on August 4 for “obstructing official business” by the Beijing Xicheng Court. Ni is currently held at the Beijing Xicheng District Detention Center.

Ni, 47, is known for her work assisting many victims of forced eviction in Beijing, many of whom were forced to move to make way for the Olympics facilities without fair compensation.

Ni worked as a lawyer for 18 years. On April 27, 2002, for filming the forced demolition of a Beijing home, Ni was reportedly beaten by police. The beating left the former lawyer disabled–she is unable to walk without crutches. On September 27, 2002, Ni was arrested when petitioning the Beijing National People’s Congress Standing Committee about the police beating. She was convicted of “obstructing official business” and sentenced to one year in prison. After her release, Ni continued to help petitioners and those who face forced eviction in Beijing despite official harassment and retaliation.

On April 15, 2008, dozens of workers and police knocked down a wall of Ni’s home. Ni tried to stop them. Police alleged that Ni beat a member of the demolition crew. On April 29, Ni was formally arrested on suspicion of “obstructing official business” by the Beijing Public Security Bureau (PSB) Xicheng District Sub-division. Soon after she was taken into police custody on April 15, Ni was reportedly beaten and mistreated at Xinjiekou Police Station in Beijing. Police confiscated Ni‘s crutches and made her crawl when she had to use the bathroom. They kicked her so severely that she fell unconscious for two days.

For more information, please see:

Beijing Activist Ni Yulan Arrested for Resisting Forced Demolition (May 2, 2008)

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