Hu Shigen

Hu Shigen


The Chinese Communist Party released Hu Shigen on March 23, 2023, after his seven-and-a-half-year sentence for “subversion of state power.” Many ChinaAid sources confirmed his freedom. Despite his high spirits, close friends confirmed Hu Shigen aged dramatically during his time in prison.



Hu Shigen is a pro-democracy activist and renowned church elder. Accumulatively, he served 24 and a half years in prison due to his activism. His most recent imprisonment was based on falsified charges of “subversion of state power.”

Tiananmen Square

Following his graduation from China’s elite Peking University, Hu took a professorial position within the capital. In the wake of the notorious Tiananmen Square Massacre, he joined a fledgling political movement. When China tried to stifle news of the violence, Hu helped plan to disseminate fliers on the tragedy’s third anniversary and served 16 years in prison for leading a so-called “counterrevolutionary ring.”

The “709” crackdown

Hu vanished during a nationwide crackdown on human rights defenders on July 9, 2015. On January 8, 2016, his family received an arrest notice stating that authorities suspected him of “subversion of state power.” Using a picture of his baptism as evidence of his supposed guilt, a court convicted him and sentenced him to seven-and-a-half years in prison on August 3, 2016.

Health Issues in prison

Officials promised to release Hu Shigen on medical parole after the trial of human rights lawyer Wang Quanzhang in January 2019. He was not released, and his family continued to beg officials for parole on account of his poor health. Hu Shigen suffered multiple severe medical conditions including kidney failure, a heart attack, and continued chest pains. Because of his age, there is justified concern that he would not survive prison without proper treatment. In December 2020, authorities began to process his parole. However, Hu Shigen has not yet been released to receive adequate medical attention.

Chinese authorities released Hu Shigen after his seven and a half year sentence

Hu Shigen after his release

An image of Hu Shigen at a baptism. Hu Shigen is a pro-democracy activist and renowned church elder, currently waits out a seven-and-a-half year sentence on falsified charges of “subversion of state power."

The photo used as evidence of Hu committing "subversion of state power"

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