September 15, 2010
BEIJING — After a recent series of harassment and threats, prominent attorney Jiang Tianyong sent the following letter to the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau, requesting protection for himself and his family.
Jiang Tianyong is a member of the newly-founded Chinese Petitioner Rights Defense Association, a group of legal defenders committed to protecting the rights of petitioners and promoting rule of law throughout China (see press release on the CPRDA). His letter to the PSB director describes the oppression and harassment he and his family have suffered at the hands of local officials for his human rights legal work.
To the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau and Director Fu Zhenghua,
At about 6 p.m. on September 7th, I was approached by people from Haidian Branch of the Domestic Security Protection Squad who conducted a “chat” with me. Their main “concern” in the chat was that a foreign media company might interview the target group in the Uyghur project in Beijing Aizhihang Institute on matters concerning its outreach. The people in the Domestic Security Protection Squad said this is a very dangerous project and they just wanted to remind me of that fact.
At about 12 midnight that night, I found my Gmail account had been broken into and all the emails from September 3rd through September 7th were gone! In this email box of mine, I usually receive on average 30-50 emails a day. Among the lost emails were those from the friend of mine in a foreign media company that the Domestic Security Protection Squad was showing interest in. Besides that, in the past two months, my Gmail account was set twice to automatically forward the emails to a mailbox that was something like “[email protected].”
At 6:20 p.m. on September 9, 2010, I received a call from my friend the attorney Liang Xiaojun. Attorney Liang told me about a weird incident and also told me to be more careful. Attorney Liang said that first he received a short message from a cell phone with the number 13466633686. The message said, “There is a No.5 Elementary School of Beijing Railroad Company on the west side of Beifengwo Road in Qiaojianli Residential Community.” (This is exactly my home address.) Attorney Liang was baffled by this inexplicable message and returned a short message, saying, “Who are you? What do you mean?” Pretty soon, someone called Attorney Liang’s cell phone from a landline phone with the number 010-58593339, saying, “I’m from the head unit of Domestic Security Protection Squad of (Beijing) Municipal Public Security Bureau. We’ll go and take a look at Jiang Tianyong’s place tomorrow morning. Oh, I’ve got it wrong.” Then he hung up. Attorney Liang told me to be as careful as possible about my safety.
As I went out at 3:40 p.m. on September 11, I was followed by people all the time, starting right from my residential community. Also, my notebook computer was obviously invaded and there is something abnormal in many of my tools of communication.
Starting from 10:30 on the morning of September 14, I received calls on my cell phone from the following numbers: +0196852201, +0196852202, +0196852211, +01931211 and “unknown” numbers. At first, I thought there was some problem with my cell phone or it had some interference that prevented me from receiving calls. Later, I found that some people called me just to harass me out of evil intentions. This kind of harassment lasted until 10:07 at night.
As my wife got off from her work on the same day, she found someone had put an additional lock on her bike that she had locked downstairs in the office building. When my wife and child got back home, they found they couldn’t open the door of our house with their keys. I then found I couldn’t open the door with my key, either.
These incidents described above are by no means a coincidence. The personal safety of me and my family is seriously threatened, and obviously these threats were not carried out by private parties. All my family demands that the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau protect the personal safety and the safety of the properties of my entire family.
To the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau
Presented by the entire family of Jiang Tianyong
September 15, 2010
Public Security Telephone: +86 300 101 0856
ChinaAid stands with Jiang Tianyong and his family and urges the Chinese authorities in Beijing to protect their citizens and their property. We encourage individuals worldwide to remember the families of human rights lawyers like Jiang Tianyong in their prayers, supporting them as they work towards a just and harmonious society.