China: Hangzhou, a dissident sentenced to 4 years for "Arab spring" stifled by Beijing

world | Mar 27, 2012 | By Asia News

Hangzhou - Despite the reformist tone of the last National People's Congress, the Chinese government continues to use an iron rod on dissidents: Xue Mingkai, one of the protagonists of the "Jasmine Repression", was sentenced to 4 years in prison for "subversion of state power". This was reported by the Chinese Human Rights Defender, which emphasizes that the activist has already been detained for a whole year without any charges or trial. Fearing that China an "Arab spring" could explode in China, Beijing has detained thousands of people.

The details of the case of Xue Mingkai are not known. The government uses the charge of "subversion" to cover any form of dissent throughout the country. Hangzhou activist, Lou Baosheng, thinks that the reason behind the arrests is that Xue wrote a letter with him to ask the government for clarity after the suspicious death of another activist, Qian Yunhui, urging the Chinese people to " stand up for democracy. "

Xue was taken by police on February 26, 2011: As usual, the authorities never issued any formal statement on the arrest to his family or workplace. This practice has now been made legal by the NPC, which has turned into law a procedure already in place: in practice, the police can detain anyone for up to one year, without any need of judgment or indictment. It is now even legal to withhold all information from relatives of the accused.

With this new tool to stop the "Jasmine Revolution", in 2011 the police detained 2,795 dissidents in so-called "black jails", hidden prisons, without notifying family or lawyers of the accused, 163 were forced under house arrest , 25 have been forcibly removed to another province than the province of residence,  7 were forcibly hospitalized in a psychiatric hospitals. There are over 89 dissidents held in real prisons, 72 were sentenced to criminal detention in special prison wings and 60 condemned to hard labor. Of all these cases, 86% has no legal basis, 6% has a basis, but it is questionable.

 

 

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