Bob Fu Files Petition on Behalf of Chen Guangcheng and Jiang Tianyong

September 21, 2010

On Monday, September 20, 2010, Reverend Bob Fu, the President of China Aid Association, filed a petition to the United States Congress and Administration and the European Parliament and Commission for immediate intervention in two high-profile cases of persecution concerning human rights lawyers in China. The request concerned the hardship imposed by the government of Linyi, Shandong province on Chen Guangcheng and his family, and that of Jiang Tianyong and his family, foisted upon them by the Beijing government.

In 2005, the blind rights defender Mr. Chen Guangcheng exposed about 130,000 forced abortions carried out in Linyi family-planning programs, and provided legal assistance to the victims — poor, local farmers without legal aid. In January 2007, his attorney was beaten and his witness kidnapped, rendering them unable to attend Chen’s court session, thus Chen Guangcheng was sentenced on the charges of “intentional destruction of properties and inciting a mob to disrupt traffic.” Although he would be imprisoned for four years and three months, his work would not go unnoticed. In 2006, TIME magazine added Chen to their yearly list of the world’s 100 most influential people. He also received other international human rights awards while imprisoned, including the Ramon Magsaysay Award.

According to the interview conducted by Zhang Min of Radio Free Asia on September 13, 2010, although the blind lawyer was released the morning of September 9th, but was forbidden to leave his home, and phone line was disconnected. His health condition was — and still is — extemely poor and he has been cut off from even the opportunity to seek quality medical treatment. During the interview on September 13, Chen Guangcheng and his wife made an urgent appeal to people everywhere and hoped permission would be granted as soon as possible for Chen to seek medical attention at a hospital not designated by the local authorities. Yuan Weijing, Chen Guangcheng’s wife, said, “What I’m concerned with the most is Guangcheng’s diarrhea and cough. On the day he was released from jail, he could hardly speak, and now he still coughs a lot at night. He has lost much weight and has more gray hair; just a mere glance at him shows he is a very frail man. We originally planned to do some lab tests after he was released from prison, but so far we can’t even leave our home. From the interstate highway to our door, there are four layers of guards who keep watch on us.”

His family has received bone-chilling threats from the government: If they contact the outside world again, the government will immediately send them to prison. Since September 13th, Chen and his family have lost all contact with the outside world — the are sealed off in their own home. Great concern for Chen Guangcheng’s life and his safety has arisen.

Jiang Tianyong is an outstanding Christian rights defense attorney who is dedicated to representing cases of human rights and religious persecution, with an objective to promote religious freedom and improve the legal system in China. He is one of the members and founders of Petitioners’ Rights Defense Lawyers Association of China, founded on July 1, 2010.  He and other rights defense attorneys drew media attention during a hearing of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission at the US House of Representatives in October 2009. Jiang testified on the issues of religious freedom in China and the violent and brutal implementation of the family planning policies. From September 7th of this year, Attorney Jiang and his entire family have been suffering harassment and threats from government security agents. The locks to his house were mysteriously changed by unidentified people; basically leaving him and his family without a home.  He complained to local authorities, but to no avail. The safety of his entire family is now seriously threatened.

Given the above circumstances, China Aid Association hereby makes the following proposals:

  1. Request the US Congress and the European Parliament pass an emergent resolution on these cases. ChinaAid also urges the US Administration and the European Commission to pay close attention to the issues at hand and negotiate with the Chinese government through diplomatic channels to safeguard the basic human rights of Chen Guangcheng,  Jiang Tianyong, and their respective families.
  2. Request the US Administration, European Commission or their consulates and embassies to send officials to Beijing to meet with Attorney Jiang Tianyong and also to visit the entire family of Chen Guangcheng in Linyi, Shandong Province.
  3. Assist the International Red Cross in dispatching medical staff to provide emergency medical care for Chen Guangcheng.

Bob Xiqiu Fu
China Aid Association

China Aid Contacts
Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
Cell: (432) 553-1080 | Office: 1+ (888) 889-7757 | Other: (432) 689-6985
Email: [email protected]

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