April 15, 2010
XINJIANG–On March 16, 2010, the Xinjiang Intermediate Court upheld Uyghur Christian Alimujiang Yimiti’s severe 15-year sentence after his second trial appeal, calling the initial verdict “correct.” Alimujiang Yimiti was charged with “divulging state secrets to foreign media” on October 27, 2009, after having been held illegally at the Kashgar Detention Center for over one year, and undergoing two secret trials. Beyond the gross violations of Chinese procedural law, the heart of Alim’s case is rooted in religious persecution.
“Alimujiang’s case is the worst case of house church persecution we have seen in the last ten years,” said President of ChinaAid Bob Fu. “We are very disappointed with the final decision made by the Xinjiang Supreme Court, because the procedure of trying Alim’s case violated the Chinese Constitution and the accusations made against Alim were unfounded.”
Based on the lack of substantive evidence against Alimujiang in the case, Alim’s lawyers Li Dunyong and Li Baiguang have found the accusations rooted in religious and ethnic complexities in the politically charged Kashgar region of Xinjiang. According to their investigation, Kashi local officers routinely practice religious persecution under the cover of criminal law, with no repercussion or enforcement from the Xinjiang regional government. Though Shariah law is regularly practiced in the predominantly Muslim region, the arbitrary implementation of local laws both violate the Chinese Constitution and defy international law. In his case appeal, Alimujiang’s legal representative Dr. Li Baiguang meticulously proves that Alimujiang is innocent according to Chinese law, denouncing the 15-years prison sentence for state subversion as both extreme and unfair. Li Baiguang filed Alim’s first appeal in January, 2010. Now that the Xinjiang Intermediate Supreme Court has rejected the appeal, Dr. Li intends to bring the case to the Beijing Supreme Court, as a matter of constitutional import, and will not rest until Alimujiang’s rights as a Chinese citizen are guaranteed by the government.
Over the past two years, China Aid Association has gone to great lengths to solve Alimujiang’s case. However, the political sensitivities of the case have not ceased to influence the procedure and course of the case. ChinaAid continues to urge the authorities to release Alimujiang Yimiti and compensate him and his family for their losses. We continue to urge the Chinese Government to enforce the legal administration of the law in Xinjiang.
Read the Decision of the Second Trial
Read the Exclusive Interview with Zhang Min, Radio Free Asia reporter covering Alim’s case.
See the RFA Article, “Uyghur Christian’s Appeal Denied” April 8, 2010.
Xinjiang Courts Uphold Alimujiang's 15-Year Sentence, ChinaAid Protests Second Trial Decision