China Aid Association
(Beijing (CAA)-November 13, 2004) China Aid Association releases an urgent letter of appeal asking for international intervention in behalf of a Chinese Christian victim. Requested by Mr. Zhang Zhenghua, husband of Ms. Jiang Zongxiu who was beaten to death during intrrogation on June 18, 2004 at PSB office of Tongzi County, Guizhou Province. CAA urges the international community to press the related Chinese government agencies to take full responsibility regarding the death of this Christian lady and to hold those abusive police officers accountable. Ms. Jiang Zongxiu, 34-year-old, was arrested on June 17 while she and her mother-in-law was distributing Christian tracts and Bibles in the market place at Tongzi County, Guizhou Province. Both were sentenced to 15 days administrative detention for their suspected activities of “spreading rumors and disturbing social order.” Ms. Jiang was found dead during her interrogation at 2pm on June 18, 2004. The sudden mysterious death was even reported by China Legal Daily on July 4, 2004 in which the reporter questioned the cause of Jiang’s death. However, despite of numerous formal appeals to higher authorities including both the provincial and central governments by then relatives, so far no one has taken any responsibilty to address the request from the relatives of the victim. Surprisingly, the local government-managed first autoposy result claimed Ms. Jiang died of “fat heart failure’ without even mentioning the obvious wounds and scars caused by beatings during the interrogation. Ms. Jiang left a four-year-old son Zhang Jun and her husband as well as her aged parents.
“This is another grave case of religious persecution costing an innocent 34-year-old lady’s life, simply because of distributing Bibles and Gospel tracts,” said Bob Fu, “We strongly urge the Chinese government to fully investigate this case and address the requests of Ms. Jiang’s relatives.”
Letters of protest can be sent to the Chinese Embassy in Washington DC at the following address:
Ambassador Yang Jiechi
Embassy of the People’s Republic of China
2300 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington DC 20008
Tel:(202) 328-2500 Fax:(202) 588-0032
Director of Religious Affairs: (202) 328-2512
November 10, 2004
Appeal from the family of Jiang Zongxiu, Who Died a Sudden Death during Detention
I am Zhang Zhenghua, husband of Jiang Zongxiu, a villager of Baishi Village of Ganshui Township of Qijiang County of Chongqing City. On June 18, 2004, the Public Security Bureau of Tongzi County of Guizhou Province in the name of “disturbing social order” detained my 34-year-old wife, due to her disseminating the Gospel books of the Bible. And on that afternoon she died a sudden death for an unknown reason. Since our marriage, my wife has been in good health, and has not been afflicted by any disease. Even if she occasionally caught cold, it was no need for her to seek treatment. In the noontime of that day my wife told my mother, who was detained in the same place for the same reason, “The officers kicked me, and I feel very painful.” Over six months have gone by since my wife’s death. The leaders of the Public Security Bureau of Tongzi deceived the upper-level authorities, and intimidated the victim’s family. It is beyond our toleration. I hereby disclose this case to the public, hoping all conscientious people might speak out the truth and bringing those who violated the law to justice.
The following are our doubts over the death of Jiang Zongxiu:
1. Jiang Zongxiu had been in good health before her death. Since our marriage, I have been working in Chongqing to sustain the family. All the work of my family, including farming the land, feeding the livestock, raising the child, taking care of my parents, had to be done by her alone. She had never been afflicted by any disease.
2. Jiang Zongxiu was severly beaten by the officers of the PSB of Tongzi during interrogation, which can be witnessed by my mother Tan Dewei, and some pictures taken on the site of autopsy. There were wounds all over her body. The current law of our country forbids beating or forcing a confession from those who are in custody.
3. Responsible officers kept lying to my mother, who was detained in the same detention center. In the course of detention, my mother asked the officers several times about Jiang Zongxiu. They had been lying to her and concealing the truth. Suppose Jiang Zongxiu did die of a sudden death as the legal medical appraisers insist, it is not necessary for the PSB to conceal the truth to us. Even at the very moment of my mother’s release on June 23, they still told her that Jiang Zongxiu had gone home. What is more, if Jiang Zongxiu had not died, the detention center would not have released my mother ahead of schedule, who was supposed to be detained fifteen days. And my mother would not have been sent home in car by the police officers. The later development of this case indicates that the PSB knew that their illegal conduct had been disclosed. Therefore, they were surprisingly well behaved.
4. The PSB ordered the remains to be cremated within three days. The PSB knows an autopsy is inevitable for such an usual case. They are eager to cremate the remains in order to destroy the strong evidence and shirk their responsibilities.
5. With the hard efforts of our attorney, the autopsy was finally conducted. In order to collect some evidences, to tell our son when he grows up what happened to his mother, we wanted to take some pictures. At first the police officers forbade us to come closer to the site. With our strong demand we were finally allowed to do so. The pictures indicate that there are wounds all over the body.
6. In the course of autopsy, we heard that one officer said, “It is unnecessary to appraise, for obviously she was beaten to death.”
7. I found out on the autopsy site that, my wife wore prison clothes. My request for her original clothes was declined. As material evidence her clothes shall be submitted for appraisal and analysis.
8. The legal medical report makes no explanation about what cause the sudden death. The report detailed the situation of the interior organs, but failed to mention the fingerprints, imprints, and stripes on the body, which any lay people can identify are caused by beating. Is it done so carelessly, or to help the PSB shirk responsibilities?
Jiang Zongxiu’s husband
China Aid Contacts
Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
Cell: (432) 553-1080 | Office: 1+ (888) 889-7757 | Other: (432) 689-6985
Email: [email protected]