China: More than 300 rights lawyers detained in nationwide crackdown, including lawyers who handled cases on corporate abuses; at least 6 face formal charges

[For further information, please refer to: Mass Crackdown on Chinese Lawyers, Defenders and International Reactions: A Brief Chronology, Human Rights in China]

Get RSS feed of these results

All components of this story

Article
7 July 2016

China crackdown on lawyers, year on, exacts toll on families

Author: Gerry Shih, Washington Post

…The Chinese government launched its largest-ever crackdown against human rights lawyers and activists on July 9, 2015, seizing and questioning hundreds of people nationwide in a campaign that sent a chill through the country’s legal system. Nearly two dozen of them remain in detention and face charges, including inciting subversion of state power — charges condemned by international rights groups and Western governments.

Twelve months later, the unprecedented sweep also has exacted a toll on the detainees’ families, who speak of financial ruin, homelessness, and physical abuse at the hands of police. Children have been denied schooling or placed under surveillance…

The families’ stories, detailed in interviews with several of the detainees’ wives, paint a pattern of how China’s government — no stranger to political oppression — has refined its playbook for dealing with dissidents over the past decade while maintaining the veneer that it is abiding by the rule of law.

“Prosecution by media, forced confessions, roping in an entire family and punishing them — it’s a modern, mass-media era take on the Cultural Revolution,” said Jiang Tianyong, a Beijing-based human rights lawyer…

Read the full post here

Report
5 July 2016

China Human Rights Lawyers Concern Group report on the 709 Crackdown

Author: China Human Rights Lawyers Concern Group

The 709 incident…refers to the incident on 9 July 2015 in which hundreds of rights-defence lawyers, legal assistants, law firm personnel, rights-defence activists and relatives of lawyers and activists were detained by public security authorities and subjected to arrest, summons, interrogation, exit restrictions, forced disappearance or short-term restriction of personal freedom. As of 31 May 2016, the number of affected persons had reached 319 and extended to 25 provinces in China.

The 709 Incident can be roughly divided in eight parts as follows…Rights-defence activists Wu Gan and Zhai  Yanmin detained, and official media defame lawyer Wang Yu…Surprise investigation of the Beijing Fengrui Law Firm and other rights-defence lawyers…Government media extensively report on the 709 Incident…Integrated interrogations throughout China, hundreds of rights-defence lawyers and citizens summonsed…Tianjin PSB forced to admit that it is the authority in charge of 709 cases, and that relevant persons have been subject to residential surveillance (secret detention) in designated locations for six months…Strict control over family members, other lawyers and vocal supporters…A majority arrested and a minority released…Investigation and detention period extended, and meeting rights repeatedly denied…

Read the full post here

Report
5 July 2016

Missing: Human Rights Activists in China & the Disappeared Justice Report

Author: China Human Rights Lawyers Concern Group

Read the full post here

Report
+ 简体中文 - Hide

Author: 中国维权律师关注组

709大抓捕,亦有称709大抓捕,是指自2015年7月9日开始,数百位中国内地的维权律师、律师助理、律所人员、民间维权人士及律师和维权人士之亲属,突遭公安当局大规模抓捕、传唤、约谈、限制出境、强迫失踪或短期限制人身自由的事件。截至2016年5月27日,受影响人士已多达319人,涉及中国25个省份。 

709大抓捕大致可分为八个部份…抓捕维权人士吴淦、翟岩民,官媒抹黑律师王宇…突击北京锋锐律师事务所及其他维权律师…官媒大幅报导709大抓捕…全国联动强制约谈、传唤数百名维权律师及公民…天津公安被迫对外承认其为709系列案件的办案机关,相关人士已被指定居所监视居住(秘密羁押)6个月…严格管控家属、律师同行及其他声援者…逮捕多数及释放少数…延长侦查羁押期限,持续剥夺会见权…

Read the full post here

Article
+ 繁體中文 - Hide

Author: 中國維權律師關注組

709大抓捕,亦有稱709大抓捕,是指自2015年7月9日開始,數百位中國內地的維權律師、律師助理、律所人員、民間維權人士及律師和維權人士之親屬,突遭公安當局大規模抓捕、傳喚、約談、限制出境、強迫失踪或短期限制人身自由的事件。截至2016年5月27日,受影響人士已多達319人,涉及中國25個省份。

709大抓捕大致可分為八個部份…抓捕維權人士吳淦、翟岩民,官媒抹黑律師王宇…突擊北京鋒銳律師事務所及其他維權律師…官媒大幅報導709大抓捕…全國聯動強制約談、傳喚數百名維權律師及公民…天津公安被迫對外承認其為709系列案件的辦案機關,相關人士已被指定居所監視居住(秘密羈押)6個月…嚴格管控家屬、律師同行及其他聲援者…逮捕多數及釋放少數…延長偵查羈押期限,持續剝奪會見權…

Read the full post here

Report
+ 简体中文 - Hide
Article
+ 繁體中文 - Hide

Author: 中國維權律師關注組

Read the full post here

Article
18 February 2016

China response to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on clampdown on lawyers and activists

Author: Permanent Mission of China to UN Office in Geneva

"Press Statement by the Spokesperson of the Permanent Mission of China on the press release by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on China", 16 Feb 2016

…[T]he Permanent Mission of China made the following clarifications, stressing that all those cases raised involve illegal and criminal activities, and has nothing to do with restrictions of the rights and freedoms. The Chinese Mission expresses strong dissatisfaction and disagreement with the High Commissioner's misleading remarks.

According to the spokesperson, on cases involving Wang Yu and a number of so called "lawyers", early in July 2015, China's Ministry of Public Security cracked down on a major criminal gang for seriously disturbing social order. It used the Beijing Fengrui Law Firm as a platform, plotted and organized dozens of incidents involving breaking into public security, procuratorial and judicial organs as well as courts, gathering crowds and making disturbances in public venues, which severely disrupted the normal social order and judicial process. They incited netizens to make phone call harassment to government officials, insult, slander, threaten and intimidate judges and police on duty. They were also involved in serious economic crimes including misappropriating company assets, tax evasion and fraud. It should be pointed out that lawyers are the safeguards of the law, but not the amulets of law-breakers. The above-mentioned criminal facts are clear with conclusive evidence.

Regarding the cases on the so-called "labour activists" in Guangdong Province, the individuals have used overseas funds to intervene in domestic labor disputes and gravely disturbed public order. Some are also accused of fraud, adultery and embezzlement…

Read the full post here

Article
18 February 2016

China’s clampdown on lawyers and activists draws concern of UN human rights chief, China responds

Author: UN News Centre

"China’s clampdown on lawyers and activists draws concern of UN human rights chief", 16 Feb 2016

The top United Nations human rights official announced today he has sought clarifications from the Chinese authorities about the recent arrests of lawyers, and intimidation of Government critics and workers of non-governmental organizations (NGOs), describing these incidents as “a very worrying pattern” that has serious implications for the activities of civil society there.

“Civil society actors, from lawyers and journalists to NGO workers, have the right to carry out their work, and it is the States’ duty to support and protect them,” High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said in a statement.

He raised such cases with Chinese officials in Geneva, and acknowledged their efforts to clarify the matters at issue. However, their responses indicate that the authorities “too often reflexively confuse the legitimate role of lawyers and activists with threats to public order and security,” he said.

Police have detained about 250 human rights lawyers, legal assistants, and activists across the country since a nationwide crackdown began last July, although many were subsequently released. Last month, 15 additional human rights lawyers were formally arrested, 10 of them for the crime of ‘subversion of State power,’ which carries a sentence of 15 years to life in prison. Among those facing that particular charge are leading human rights lawyers Li Heping and Wang Yu…

Read the full post here

Article
+ 简体中文 - Hide

Author: 联合国新闻

“人权高专对中国压制律师和人权活动人士表达关切”, 2016年2月16日

[英文内容含中方回应]

人权高专扎伊德2月16日发表声明,对中国近来逮捕律师、骚扰和恐吓政府批评者和非政府组织工作人员的做法表达关切,并寻求中国当局就此进行澄清。
  
人权高专扎伊德在16日所发表的声明中表示,人们正在目睹在中国正在形成一种对公民社会和他们在全国范围内所做重要工作产生严重影响的令人不安的模式。他指出,公民社会的行动者,从律师到非政府组织工作人员,有权开展自己的工作,国家有义务支持和保护他们。
  
人权高专表示,他对有机会向日内瓦的中国官员就类似案例表达关切表示感谢,并承认他们在努力澄清有关问题。但他所收到的回答显示,当局往往本能地将律师和人权活动人士所发挥的合法作用与公共秩序和安全威胁相混淆。
  
 扎伊德在声明中表示,自从去年7月开始全国镇压行动以来,警方已拘留了250名人权律师、法律 助理和人权活动人士,尽管许多人后来得到释放。上个月,15名人权律师被正式逮捕,有10人的罪名是“颠覆国家政权”,这一罪名的处罚是15年至终身监 禁。面临“颠覆国家政权”罪名指控的著名人权律师当中有李和平和王宇。
  
扎伊德表示,律师从来就不应该由于履行自己的专业职责而受到起诉或任何类型的制裁或恐吓。他们在保护人权和法治方面发挥着重要作用。他敦促中国政府立即和无条件地释放所有这些律师。与此同时,人权高专欢迎于去年12月受到拘留的两名劳工活动人士获得释放,但提请人们注意他们的其他同事依然遭到拘留…

Read the full post here