■ Anastasia Lin, a Chinese-Canadian actress and winner of last year’s Miss World Canada, will join Bob Fu, a Chinese dissident, and other China experts at a hearing held by the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission in Committee Room 18, House of Commons, from 5pm-7pm on Wednesday 23 March. The hearing is open to the media and public.
The hearing is part of an inquiry into China’s deteriorating human rights situation, held by the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, chaired by Fiona Bruce MP.
The inquiry focuses on the situation in China over the past three years since Xi Jinping became President, and will include hearing evidence of the crackdown on lawyers in the last year, the abduction of booksellers from Hong Kong and dissidents from other countries, the destruction of crosses in Zhejiang Province, the situation in Tibet and Xinjiang, and the continuing persecution of Falun Gong, as well as media censorship and propaganda and the new legislation restricting Non-Governmental Organisations, among other issues.
Other speakers at the hearing on 23 March include Nicola Macbean, Director of the Rights Practice and Dr Eva Pils, a China scholar and Reader in Transitional Law at King’s College, London.
The inquiry follows on from an Urgent Question raised by Fiona Bruce MP in the House of Commons on 22 October, several written Parliamentary Questions tabled subsequently, and recent articles by Fiona Bruce on CapX and PoliticsHome.com, and by the Commission’s Deputy Chairman, Benedict Rogers, on Huffington Post.
Fiona Bruce MP, Chair of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, said: “We are deeply concerned about the serious deterioration in human rights in China over the past three years. In light of the closer relationship between the United Kingdom and China that is developing, we believe it is vital that we examine the evidence on a range of human rights issues in China, so that we can provide recommendations to the governments of both countries. We are delighted that Anastasia Lin, Bob Fu and a number of key China specialists are willing to share their evidence and expertise with us. This hearing is the beginning of our inquiry, which will conclude with the release of a report summarising the evidence, our conclusions and the recommendations we wish to make.”
Media and the public are welcome at the hearing. Please enter the House of Commons through the Cromwell Green Entrance, allowing at least half an hour due to queues.
For further information please contact Gerard Miles on [email protected] or Johnny Monro on [email protected], or call the office of Fiona Bruce MP on 020 7 219 2969, or contact Benedict Rogers on [email protected] or 07823329664.
Notes to the Editor:
Anastasia Lin: Determined to be a voice for the voiceless, Anastasia Lin has dedicated her life to freedom of conscience. As Miss World Canada, Anastasia planned to continue on the path that had won her the title and much national acclaim at the international Miss World pageant. In a surprising turn of events, however, she was barred from participating in the event because the Chinese government took issue with her outspoken support of freedom of belief in her native country.
Since beginning acting at the age of seven, Anastasia has appeared in over 20 films and television productions. She attended the University of Toronto where she double majored in International Relations and Theatre/Acting. She has now earned both notoriety and respect as an international film star, sought-after model, and human rights activist. Her films had received awards including Mexico International Film Festival’s Golden Palm Award and California’s Indie Fest Award of Merit. As often as possible, she works at the confluence of her activism and acting, playing roles in films and television productions that carry messages of freedom, morality, and openness. As a model, she has made appearances on runways around from New York, to Toronto including New York Fashion Week show at the prestigious Waldorf-Astoria.
Along with her acting and participation in pageants, she is known for her public position against human rights abuses in China. Canadian television reports attributed her victory in the 2015 Miss World Canada Pageant in part to her passion for human rights. Anastasia was invited to testify before U.S. Congress, and Taiwan Legislative Yuan, addressing the topic of freedom of conscience in China. She has published articles on the Washington Post, Huffington Post, Globe and Mail, and other major newspapers around the world. Last month she spoke in a debate on China at the Oxford Union.
Bob (Xiqiu) Fu is one of the leading voices in the world for persecuted faith communities in China. Born and raised in mainland China, he was a student leader during the Tiananmen Square demonstrating for freedom and democracy in 1989. 。
Bob graduated from the School of International Relations at the People’s (Renmin) University in Beijing and taught English to Communist Party officials at the Beijing Administrative College and Beijing Party School of the Chinese Communist Party from 1993-1996. Fu was also a house church leader in Beijing until he and his wife, Heidi, were imprisoned for two months for “illegal evangelism” in 1996. Bob and Heidi fled to the United States as religious refugees in 1997, and subsequently founded China Aid in 2002 to bring international attention to China’s gross human rights violations and to promote religious freedom and rule of law in China. Click here for Bob Fu’s story and how he escaped from Chinese authorities.
As president of China Aid, Bob has testified before the Congressional Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (USCHR), the Foreign Press Association, and the European Commission and European Union Parliament. He also regularly briefs the State Department and Members of Congress, including Members of the International Religious Freedom Caucus on the status of religious freedom and rule of law in China. In 2008, Bob was invited to the White House to brief President George W. Bush on religious freedom and human rights in China, and in 2011, the Nobel Prize Committee recognized his efforts with an invitation to attend the award ceremony for Nobel Laureate Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo.
Bob Fu is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Durham University, U.K., graduated from the Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, and was awarded an honorary doctorate degree on Global Christian Leadership from Midwest University, where he has served as a distinguished professor on religion and public policy. He serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the Chinese Law and Religion Monitor, a journal on religious freedom and the rule of law in China, and as a guest editor for Chinese Law and Government, a journal by University of California, Los Angles.
Bob received the 2007 John Leland Religious Liberty Award from the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC). In 2013, Bob Fu’s autobiography God’s Double Agent was released by the Baker Publishing Group. Bob Fu’s life story is also included in the George W. Bush Institute’s Freedom Collection: http://www.bushcenter.org/human-freedom/freedom-collection