(Honghu, Hubei—May 9, 2019) The husband and the brother of human rights activist Chen Yan, who is living in the Netherlands, were interrogated by Chinese officials for affiliation with her.
In a transcript of the interrogation between Chen’s husband and public security authorities in Honghu, Hubei province, the officials said Chen is suspected of “leading others to slander the nation overseas.” They then asked him how he contacted his wife, when he had last contacted her, what her phone number is, where they can reach her over the social media platform WeChat, as well as various questions about her so-called “illegal actions.”
According to Chen, authorities also located her brother in Beijing and interviewed him. They attempted to contact her son as well but received no reply.
Chen fled to the Netherlands in 2017 and sought asylum after persecution against her and her friends escalated because of their online human rights activism. Once in the country, she continued her defense of Chinese citizens, even protesting a visit of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang. Shortly after, Dutch officials placed her in immigration prison, and she feared she would be sent to China. However, she was later released and now resides in refugee housing. She will be allowed to continue her asylum case.
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