Incarcerated human rights lawyer dismisses defense attorney
By Brynne Lawrence
(Wenzhou, Zhejiang—Feb. 1, 2016) Authorities in China’s coastal Zhejiang province coerced an incarcerated human rights lawyer to write a letter decommissioning his defense attorney on Wednesday.
Zhang Chenshou, the defense attorney commissioned to represent human rights defender Zhang Kai, who is currently being held in an unspecified “black jail” for his legal representation of churches affected by the government’s cross demolition campaign, received a letter enclosed in an official envelope from the Wenzhou Municipal Public Security Bureau. The message, signed by Zhang Kai, indicated that he is no longer in need of a lawyer.
This letter is the latest in a series of dismissal documents allegedly from incarcerated human rights activists, including Zhang Kai, which many suspect to have been written under the authorities’ pressure.
A translation of Zhang Kai’s letter to Zhang Chenshou can be read in full below.
China Aid exposes human rights violations, such as those experienced by Zhang Kai and other imprisoned human rights activists, in order to promote human rights and rule of law in China.
Thank you for being my lawyer. Because I am now cooperating in the investigation, I don’t need a lawyer for now. I will reconsider [you] when I need [your services].
Jan 27, 2016