China Human Rights Briefing June 8-15, 2011

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China Human Rights Briefing

June 8-15, 2011

To download this week’s CHRB as a .pdf file, please click here


  • Updates on Detentions and Disappearances Related to the “Jasmine Revolution” Crackdown: The Xicheng District Procuratorate recently approved the arrest of Dong Jiqin (董继勤), the husband of rights defense lawyer Ni Yulan (倪玉兰). At the time of writing, their family had not received formal arrest notices, but the arrests are believed to have been for the same charge—“creating a disturbance”—and approved on the same day following the couple’s detention in early May.
  • Imprisoned Journalist Sentenced to Eight More Years: Reporter Qi Chonghuai (齐崇淮) was sentenced on June 9 by the Tengzhou City Court in Shandong Province to eight years’ imprisonment for “extortion and blackmail” and “embezzlement.” This sentence is in addition to the nearly four years that he has already served. Prior to this new conviction, Qi had been scheduled to be released at the end of June.


Arbitrary Detention

  • Updates on Detentions and Disappearances Related to the “Jasmine Revolution” Crackdown
  • Jailed Journalist Qi Chonghuai Sentenced to Eight More Years on Eve of Release
  • Guangxi Human Rights Lawyer Yang Zaixin Criminally Detained
  • Sichuan Activist Huang Qi Released from Prison
  • China Pan-Blue Alliance Co-Founder Serving Six Years for “Inciting Subversion”
  • Anhui Officials Hold Activist Qian Jin in Psychiatric Hospital Longer Than Anticipated
  • Anhui Petitioner Detained, Later Arrested After RTL Camp Refuses Him For Medical Condition

Harassment of Activists

  • Yao Lifa Faces Increased Harassment after Calls from Hong Kong Journalist, U.S. Embassy
  • Qin Yongmin Again Harassed By Police, Friend Visiting Him Forced to Leave Wuhan

Citizens’ Actions

  • Changsha Residents Respond Strongly to Forced Evictions
  • Anhui Petitioners Thwart Police’s Attempt to Seize Them


Arbitrary Detention

Updates on Detentions and Disappearances Related to the “Jasmine Revolution” Crackdown

CHRD recently learned that the Xicheng District Procuratorate has approved the arrest of Dong Jiqin (董继勤), the husband of rights defense lawyer Ni Yulan (倪玉兰). Ni’s arrest was reported in May. At the time of writing, their family had not received a formal arrest notice, but Ni’s lawyer, Cheng Hai (程海), informed the couple’s daughter at the end of May that her parents were probably arrested the same day, around May 13, and likely on the same charge, “creating a disturbance” (寻衅滋事). Cheng had requested that Ni be released on medical parole due to her health, as Ni cannot walk and has numerous medical problems following episodes of torture she suffered in detention over the past decade. The request was not granted, though detention center officials told Cheng that Ni would be able to see a doctor. The couple’s arrest has led to severe consequences for members of their family. Their daughter has trouble meeting basic expenses, and police tracked down Dong’s younger brother at his workplace and demanded he report to the police twice a day during this “sensitive period,” but he has refused to comply.

Dong’s arrest brings the total number of individuals formally arrested in relation to the “Jasmine Revolution” crackdown on civil society to nine; for more information, please see our website: (CHRD)[i]


Jailed Journalist Qi Chonghuai Sentenced to Eight More Years on Eve of Release

On June 9, the Tengzhou City Court in Shandong Province convicted reporter Qi Chonghuai (齐崇淮) of “extortion and blackmail”(敲诈勒索罪) and “embezzlement” (职务侵占罪),sentencing him to eight more years in prison in addition to the four years he has almost completed. The court sentenced Qi to six years for “embezzlement” and three for “extortion and blackmail.” On top of a four-year sentence, also for “extortion and blackmail,” handed down in 2007, Qi has been sentenced to a total of 13 years in prison, of which he will serve 12. Prior to this recent conviction, he was originally scheduled to be released at the end of this month.

Qi’s latest conviction is based on four incidents that occurred prior to 2007 during which he received money while on assignment. Police tortured him to coerce a confession regarding these payments during an interrogation in 2007; however, the procuratorate did not indict him on the basis of this confession when he was first prosecuted for “extortion and blackmail.” The decision to convict and sentence Qi earlier this month to such a long period of imprisonment, when he was due to be released from prison after serving time for the same crime, is a clear instance of politically-motivated persecution for his work as a muckraking journalist. Qi’s first conviction came after he reported on corruption related to the construction of the Haohua Government Office Building in Tengzhou. He was a reporter and former Shandong Bureau Chief for the Fazhi Morning Post, known for his articles exposing local corruption, social injustice, and human rights violations.

Qi was represented in court by Beijing-based lawyers Wang Quanzhang (王全章) and Liu Xiaoyuan (刘晓原), who indicated after the trial that the court disregarded their defense of their client, and that his conviction was a foregone conclusion. Qi’s wife, Jiao Xia (焦霞), attended the trial but was removed during the proceedings by a bailiff after she spoke out. She has since gone missing, and friends are concerned that, despondent over her husband’s fate, she may try to harm herself. During his time in prison, Qi has been tortured, beaten, and forced to perform hard labor. A series of letters he was able to smuggle out in 2009 described the abuse and mistreatment he experienced in graphic detail; for further information, please see: (CHRD)[ii]


Guangxi Human Rights Lawyer Yang Zaixin Criminally Detained

On the morning of June 15, CHRD learned from the wife of human rights lawyer Yang Zaixin (杨在新), from Beihai City, Guangxi Province, that he has been criminally detained and is being held in the Beihai City Detention Center on suspicion of “obstructing testimony” (妨害作证罪). Yang’s wife, Huang Zhongyan (黄仲琰), explained that around 10:30 a.m. on June 14, Yang was alone at home when police officers took him away without notifying her. When Huang returned home around noon, she discovered that Yang was gone and their home was in disarray. The Criminal Investigation Unit of the Haicheng branch of the Beihai Public Security Bureau (PSB) left a list of items that had been confiscated, including two computers, a cell phone, and many other personal items. Huang then called the Haicheng branch of the PSB and spoke to the chief of the fifth squad, who informed Huang of the crime of which he was suspected and that the legal documents would be provided to the family later in the day.

Yang Zaixin has worked for years in the area of rights defense, and has been beaten and summoned for questioning numerous times, in addition to having faced delays in the annual lawyers’ license review and registration process because of his work. In May, sensing that something might happen to him, Yang left a message for friends saying that the Beihai PSB was intent on turning him into the “second Li Zhuang” by framing him with a false charge of suborning perjury, and also asked for their support if he was detained.[iii]


Sichuan Activist Huang Qi Released from Prison

On June 10, human rights activist Huang Qi (黄琦) was released from Chuandong Prison in Dazhu City, Sichuan Province. Chengdu City police returned Huang to his hometown of Neijiang City in Sichuan, where he was met by his mother and taken to his family’s home. Officials in Chengdu barred Huang’s family and friends from greeting him at the prison, though they were able to gather later at Huang’s family home without police interference. Huang served a three-year sentence for “illegal possession of state secrets” (非法持有国家秘密罪) related to sharing information with foreign journalists about protests by families whose children had died in the Sichuan earthquake in May 2008. Though known to have suffered from physical ailments while serving his sentence, Huang has indicated that he is in decent health and that his greatest worries now are financial. (CHRD)[iv]


China Pan-Blue Alliance Co-Founder Serving Six Years for “Inciting Subversion”

On June 8, CHRD learned that Wen Yan (文炎, aka Sun Buer [孙不二]), co-founder of the China Pan-Blue Alliance, was convicted of “inciting subversion of state power” (煽动颠覆国家政权罪) on December 11, 2009. He is currently serving a six-year prison sentence in Hanxi Prison in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, and will be subject to deprivation of political rights for two years after his release. Wen has been out of contact with friends and fellow activists in recent years and his fate had previously been unclear.

Wen was criminally detained by the Ji’an City Public Security Bureau in Jiangxi Province in June 2007. He was released a month later, and on the same day the Wuhan City Public Security Bureau placed him under criminal detention on suspicion of “inciting subversion.” He was formally arrested for “inciting subversion” on July 22, 2007. Wen was placed under residential surveillance between May 7, 2008, and November 6, 2008, and then on November 13, 2008, he was criminally detained again, this time on suspicion of “illegally crossing the border.” He was formally arrested on this charge on December 19, 2008. Procuratorial organs brought charges of both “inciting subversion” and “illegally crossing the border” (偷越国境罪) against Sun, but he was only convicted of the former charge. (CHRD)[v]


Anhui Officials Hold Activist Qian Jin in Psychiatric Hospital Longer than Anticipated

CHRD learned on ​​June 14 that pro-democracy activist Qian Jin (钱进), from Bengbu City, Anhui Province, would continue to be held in the Anhui Huaiyuan Rongguang Hospital (a psychiatric hospital) despite earlier indications by Bengbu authorities that his release was imminent. Detained in the hospital since February 26, Qian—who does not suffer from mental health problems—was despondent during a visit on June 12 by his sister, Qian Guangming (钱广明), because he had already been detained for more than three months and the “sensitive” date of June 4 had passed, yet he still had not been released. The two previous times officials had detained Qian in a psychiatric hospital, he was released after three months. Moreover, when activist Zhang Lin (张林)and other friends sought to visit Qian at the hospital, Bengbu national security officers refused the request, stating that Qian would be released very soon.
In addition, CHRD has learned that petitioner Hu Dongsheng (胡东圣), from Hefei City, Anhui Province, a Communist Party member and a former grassroots Party branch secretary, will likely continue to be detained in the local Ankang Psychiatric Hospital for at least two more weeks. On April 29, 2011, Hu was seized while petitioning at the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing regarding the forced demolition of his home. He was beaten and forcibly returned to Hefei, and has been detained in the hospital ever since. This is the second time Hu has been detained in an Ankang Psychiatric Hospital for petitioning. (CHRD)[vi]


Anhui Petitioner Detained, Later Arrested After RTL Camp Refuses Him For Medical Condition

CHRD has learned that Liang Maorong (梁茂荣), a petitioner from Suzhou City, Anhui Province, has been arrested in Lingbi County in Suzhou after his initial release from detention when the Bangbu Re-education through Labor (RTL) Camp refused to admit him because he has diabetes. Liang’s daughter told CHRD that as many as 30 officers and plainclothes police came to their family home on May 16 to take her father away on the grounds that he has outstanding bank debts and had not attended a court-ordered hearing on the matter that took place in 2006 (Liang had missed the hearing since he was serving an RTL sentence at the time).

He was to spend 15 days in the Lingbi County Detention House but, on May 24, he received a decision ordering him to RTL for petitioning in Beijing and disrupting the order of official business of the Lingbi County government. He was taken that day to the Bangbu RTL Camp, which refused to admit him due to his diabetes, and he immediately was returned to the detention house. Liang’s family, after having difficulty locating him and being concerned for his health and safety, received a notice that stated that Liang was being detained beyond May 31 for refusing to comply with the 2006 verdict related to the bank matter. Liang’s daughter further informed CHRD that, on June 11, officers from the Lingbi County Public Security Bureau delivered a formal notice of Liang’s arrest (dated June 10) on the charge of not complying with the past verdict. (CHRD)[vii]


Harassment of Activists

Yao Lifa Faces Increased Harassment after Calls from Hong Kong Journalist, U.S. Embassy

CHRD has learned that police increased surveillance of human rights activist Yao Lifa (姚立法) in Qianjiang City, Hubei Province, and prevented him from leaving his home on at least two occasions recently after he received phone calls from Hong Kong Cable Television and the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. Police cut the electricity at Yao’s home after the Hong Kong news outlet contacted him for an interview on June 9. Yao then received a call on June 10 from an employee at the U.S. Embassy who was attempting to set up a meeting. Later that day, more guards were added to the detail stationed outside Yao’s apartment building. The guards prevented Yao from leaving his home on June 11 to go see a doctor, and he was told again on June 12 that he was not permitted to go out. Yao, whose home has been under 24-hour-a-day surveillance since February 20, has been detained by public security four times this year. (CHRD)[viii]


Qin Yongmin Again Harassed By Police, Friend Visiting Him Forced to Leave Wuhan

Activist Qin Yongmin (秦永敏), a co-founder of the banned China Democracy Party (CDP), reported to CHRD that he was called on June 8 to the Xingouqiao Police Station in Wuhan, where he was verbally threatened and abused for three hours. Officer Wang Hui (王辉) demanded he pay a fine of 200 RMB for giving 1,000 RMB to dissident Li Wangyang (李旺). Outraged by Wang’s extreme behavior, Qin refused to pay a fine and later called the Wuhan City Public Security Bureau to demand someone come and talk to Wang about his abuse. In addition, at 11 p.m. that evening, a friend of Qin’s visiting from Tianjin, Zhang Wei (张伟), called from the Hankou Train Station, reporting that after he and Qin had parted earlier that night, police removed Zhang from a bus he had boarded, placed him in a police vehicle, and took him to the train station in an attempt to force him to leave town. (CHRD)[ix]


Citizens’ Actions

Changsha Residents Respond Strongly to Forced Evictions

On the morning of June 13, more than 500 residents from across the city demonstrated against forced evictions in front of the Changsha City Government building, and several dozen police officers and anti-riot forces were dispatched to halt the protest. In the afternoon that same day, nearly 1,000 individuals—judicial staff, police forces, and other government personnel—converged near the home of Zeng Wu (曾武) to oversee its demolition. Zeng was trying desperately to prevent the destruction of his home and was subsequently taken into custody along with his wife and child.

These incidents come during a heated period of controversy surrounding forced evictions in Changsha. Several residents, who had been detained in black jails in late May after they were evicted from their homes in connection with development projects, filed a complaint on June 9 with the Hunan People’s Provincial Procuratorate accusing 67 government personnel of abuse. The group has been informed they will receive an official response to their complaint by June 16. Also, several citizens submitted complaints to the Changsha City Public Security Bureau after being detained for petitioning in Beijing in March about property demolished to clear land for development. (CHRD)[x]


Anhui Petitioners Thwart Police’s Attempt to Seize Them

Around 8 a.m. on June 13, about 100 petitioners from across Anhui Province converged in front of the Daoxianglou Guest House in Hefei City, where they sought to present grievances to a central inspection team they believed was still at the guest house. Although they were informed that the central inspection team had already left Hefei, the petitioners did not disperse. One of the petitioners, Ma Hailing (马海玲), from Hefei, has been seeking an explanation for the past few years as to why local officials secretly dug up and moved her mother’s grave, but she has still not received an explanation. Two other individuals present on June 13, Zhang Guobao (张国宝) and Qi Baolian (齐宝莲) (音), both from Huainan City, were petitioning about mistreatment they suffered at the hands of Huainan police officers in connection with their attempts to present grievances to the central inspection team earlier in June.

Several hours later, approximately eight police officers from Huainan and seven individuals from Ma Hailing’s Hefei neighborhood committee arrived at the Daoxianglou Guest House to seize Ma and the petitioners from Huainan. Ma Hailing refused to go with them, and the other petitioners supported her by denouncing the interceptors and the actions of the Hefei officials in surreptitiously moving Ma’s mother’s grave. The petitioners also successfully prevented the Huainan police officers from seizing anyone by yelling in unison “Go away!” and then appealing to an Anhui government official responsible for assisting the central inspection team who was present to intervene. The official eventually spoke to the Huainan police, who then retreated to one side, and by around noon, the officers had left the area around the guest house and the petitioners were able to disperse safely.[xi]


Editors: Victor Clemens and Tanya Wang

Follow us on Twitter: @CHRDnet

News updates from CHRD


[i] “Arrests of Rights Defense Lawyer Ni Yulan and Husband Both Confirmed, Family Has Not Received Formal Notice,” (倪玉兰夫妇双双被捕,亲属未收到法律文书), June 9, 2011,; “News Flash: Arrest of Human Rights Lawyer Ni Yulan Approved” (快讯:维权律师倪玉兰被批准逮捕), May 17, 2011,

[ii] “Shandong Journalist Qi Chonghuai Given Heavy 12-Year Sentence” (山东维权记者齐崇淮被重判12年), June 9, 2011,

[iii] “Beihai, Guangxi Rights Defense Lawyer Yang Zaixin Criminally Detained,” (广西北海维权律师杨在新被刑拘 ), June 14, 2011,

[iv] “Huang Qi Returns Home After Completion of Sentence, Met By Friends,” (天网黄琦刑满回家,各地朋友为他接风), June 10, 2011,; “Sichuan Rights Activist Huang Qi Released From Prison,” (四川维权人士黄琦出狱), June 10, 2011,; “Huang Qi To Be Released From Prison, Family Forbidden To Go Receive Him,” (黄琦将出狱,家人被禁到监狱迎接), June 7, 2011,

[v] “China Pan-Blue Alliance Co-Founder Sun Buer Serving 6 Years in Prison for Inciting Subversion of State Power,” (中国泛蓝联盟创始人孙不二被以煽动颠覆国家政权罪判刑六年), June 8, 2011,

[1] “Bengbu Authorities Break Promise, Continue to Detain Qian Jin in Psychiatric Hospital,” (蚌埠当局违反承诺将钱进继续关押精神病院), June 14, 2011,; “Hefei Petitioner Hu Dongsheng Detained in Psychiatric Institution for Petitioning” (合肥访民胡东圣因上访被关精神病院), May 5, 2011,

[vii] “Suizhou, Anhui Petitioner Liang Maorong Arrested,” (安徽宿州访民梁茂荣被逮捕), June 11, 2011,; “Anhui Petitioner Liang Maorong Returned to Criminal Detention After RTL Camp Refuses Him Due to Medical Condition,” (安徽访民梁茂荣劳教被拒收后遭刑拘), June 9, 2011,;

[viii] “Elections Expert Yao Lifa Subjected to Restrictions on Personal Liberty After Call from U.S. Embassy,” (选举专家姚立法接美国使馆电话后被限制人身自由), June 12, 2011,

[ix] “Qin Yongmin Again Called in By Police, Friend Visiting Him Forced To Leave Wuhan,” (秦永敏再遭传唤,探访他的朋友被强制离开武汉), June 8, 2011,

[x] “More than 500 Changsha Residents Protest at City Government Building Over Forced Evictions,” (长沙500余名被拆迁户到市政府抗议游行), June 13, 2011,; “Changsha Residents Continue to Pursue Rights Defense Over Illegal Detention; Procuratorate to Respond to Filed Complaint in 7 Days,” (湖南长沙遭非法拘禁的公民继续依 法维权,省检察院表示7日后给答复 ), June 13, 2011,; “Changsha Resident Zeng Wu Desperately Protests Against Demolition Team,” (长沙公民曾武以死抗争千余人的强拆队伍 ), June 13, 2011,; “Forcibly Evicted Changsha Residents Accuse Government Workers of Illegally Establishing Black Jails,” (长沙遭强拆户控告国家工作人员涉嫌私设黑监狱,滥用职权非法拘禁 ), June 10, 2011,

[xi] “Anhui Petitioners Block Police from Taking Petitioners Away at Central Inspection Team Station,” (安徽访民 在中央巡视组驻地阻止警察抓人), June 14, 2011,; “Petitioners Who Climbed Chimney in Beijing to Protest Detained” (北京登烟囱抗议的访民被拘留), November 11, 2010,

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