Petitioner Seriously Injured following Beating by Shanghai Officials

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Petitioner Seriously Injured following Beating by Shanghai Officials

(Chinese Human Rights Defenders, January 9, 2009)- CHRD has learned that Cao Yibao (曹义宝), a petitioner against forced eviction from Shanghai, sustained serious injuries after she was beaten on the orders of Shanghai Municipal government officials while in illegal detention.

On December 26, 2008, Cao was picked off from the street by police in Beijing. Cao was first sent to Ma Jia Lou, a centralized “black jail” where petitioners intercepted by Beijing police are first sent. Cao was then transferred to another black jail managed by the Shanghai Municipal Government in Beijing. Later that evening, Shanghai interceptors sent Cao along with 77 other petitioners to the Beijing Liaison Office of Baoding City, Hebei Province. There, Cao was illegally strip-searched, and had her ID, cell phone, and money taken. Angered at this abusive treatment, the 57-year old Cao verbally lashed out at the interceptors, which prompted one of the them, Employee No. 204 (nicknamed “Xiao Shandong” [小山东]) of the Letters and Visits Office of Shanghai Municipal Government to direct his subordinates to violently beat her, fracturing her eye sockets and seriously injuring her face and head. Cao, along with the others detained, were held in a freezing room with insufficient food. In the evening of December 27, Cao was forcibly returned to Shanghai by train.

Upon returning to Shanghai, Cao visited various government offices. Government workers in these offices accused her of “hooliganism” and rejected her requests to have her injuries examined and lodge complaints against the abusive officials.

Cao paid for a medical examination at Shanghai No. 9 People’s Hospital. It revealed multiple fractures to bones in her face, and doctors, fearing a high risk of infection, recommended emergency surgery. However, given the high cost of medical treatment, it is unlikely Cao will be able to afford the procedures.

CHRD condemns the beating of Cao Yibao by members of Shanghai Municipal Government.

The Shanghai authorities have violated Cao’s right to be protected against cruel and inhuman punishment, guaranteed by Article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) as well as the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT). Cao’s illegal detention also violated her rights to liberty and security of person, as guaranteed by Article 37 of the Chinese Constitution and Article 9 of the ICCPR.

CHRD demands the Chinese authorities to conduct an independent investigation into this incident and, if it finds evidence that Cao has been tortured, bring those responsible to justice in accordance with the law.

CHRD further demands that the Chinese authorities arrange for the medical treatment of Cao immediately.

Media contacts for this press release:

Renee Xia, International Director (English and Mandarin): +1 3015479286
Wang Songlian, Researcher and English Editor (English, Mandarin and Cantonese): +852 81911660

For more information, please see:

About this incident:

About black jails and human rights abuses against petitioners:

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