April 20, 2010
XINJIANG— On April 12, Attorneys Li Baiguang and Liu Peifu from the Beijing Gongxing Law Firm, flew to Urumqi to meet with Uyghur Christian prisoner Alimujiang Yimiti to prepare his second appeal. Alimujiang’s wife, Gulinuer Minamu, accompanied them to the prison, hoping to see her husband for the first time in over two years. Prison authorities refused to allow them to visit Alim, claiming the lawyers did not hold proper authorization for the visit.
Over the next three days, Lawyers Li and Liu pursued the proper authorization validating their visit (a civil right to the prisoner as guaranteed by Chinese law), making numerous trips between the prison and government officers to gather the various notices and certificates touted as ‘necessary’ by the prison officials. One successful trip to the Xinjiang Bureau of Prison Management yielded an official Letter of Authorization for Li and Liu to defend Alim’s appeal, a directive guaranteeing Alim’s right to meet with his lawyers in person. Despite their prompt and efficient legal actions, Alimujiang’s attorneys were ultimately refused permission to see him on April 15. The Xinjiang Prison’s rejection of this high-level authorization is a gross violation of Chinese procedural law.
To justify their actions, the prison leader eventually informed Dr. Li and Mr. Liu, “As for your application to see Alimujiang, we have asked our superiors. For the time being, it cannot be approved. As Alimujiang has just arrived in the prison, we still don’t know much about his information. We are still not clear of his attitude in admitting his crimes and how his reformation in the prison goes. Therefore, we cannot approve your application for now. We’ll talk about that matter later.”
Attorneys Li Baiguang and Liu Peifu returned to Beijing later that week to prepare how to advance Alim’s case. To date, Alimujiang has not been able to meet with his lawyers in order to file his appeal.
Letter of Authorization
Dr. Li Baiguang’s Statement
For more background on Alimujiang’s case, click here.
ChinaAid urges the Chinese government to allow its prisoners the right to meet with their lawyers. We encourage Christians worldwide to continue to pray for justice in Alimujiang’s case.