Authoritarianism Shall Perish – Ding Jiaxi’s Court Statement

Ding Jiaxi, April 9, 2023

After a decade-long successful career as a successful commercial lawyer in Beijing, Ding Jiaxi (丁家喜) joined the New Citizens Movement in 2011 led by legal scholar Xu Zhiyong (许志永). The citizen movement chiefly concerned itself with calling upon Chinese to become true citizens, exercising their rights and shouldering their responsibilities as citizens to change China into a democratic country through nonviolent means. The citizen activists organized regular citizens’ gatherings around the country, promoted equal education rights for children of migrant workers, and supported independent candidates for grassroots elections of people’s representatives, among many other causes. Xu Zhiyong and Ding Jiaxi were both imprisoned during the crackdown on the Citizens Movement in 2013, serving four years and three and half years, respectively. In December 2019, Ding Jiaxi was again detained after a gathering in Xiamen, Fujian province that month. Xu was detained in February, 2020. Both were tortured during the first six months in secret detention, or RSDL. Held in Linshu County detention center (山东临沭县看守所) in Shandong province, they were tried separately in June 2022 for “subversion of state power.” They are expected to be sentenced on Monday, April 10, 2023, Beijing time. Not allowed to have paper and pen, and with slim chances of being allowed to speak in court, Ding Jiaxi dictated the following statement, to be released before his sentencing. – The editors

Ding Jiaxi around 2018. Photo: China Change
Authoritarianism Shall Perish – Ding Jiaxi’s Court Statement

It’s been over 110 years since the Xinhai Revolution of 1911 [that established the Republic of China]. Yet despite several generations of sacrifices, the Chinese people still live in a state of political oppression, economic unfreedom, and ideological bondage. Dictators and their privileged interest groups continue to reinforce their authoritarian rule through increasingly high-tech means. But as the powerful historical current of civilization surges forth, we are witnessing an unfolding battle between the forces of democracy and authoritarianism. The megalomania of dictatorship and the eternal one-party state is fast coming to an end, and the social transformation of China is growing closer, day by day.

It has always been our sincere desire to avoid social turmoil and human suffering during the transformation period. We firmly believe that the most stable model for China’s transformation is one that is peaceful, rational, and non-violent. However many have doubted me, no matter many difficulties and setbacks I’ve encountered, including physical torture that I’ve suffered, I will not part from my steadfast convictions.

All Chinese who care about our country’s future must shoulder the historical responsibility of our generation, which is to eradicate autocracy and build a beautiful China. This demands that we overcome the fear in our hearts, speak loudly for justice, resolutely oppose dictatorship and privileged interest groups, and reject their authoritarian rule. As long as we work as one, the light of freedom, democracy and the rule of law will surely shine on the land of China!

China is on the cusp of great change. Even from within my prison walls, I can feel it clearly. The advancing footsteps of civilization come like the awakening thunder of spring! I see the day when the people of China wake up from their extreme slavery, see through the myriad injustices interwoven with moralizing deceit, and realize the true reality. Once the people no longer trust in and obey with their authoritarian rule, the dictatorship and its privileged interest groups will disintegrate.

I have always believed that despite all the efforts by the authoritarian regime to reverse the historical current of human civilization’s progress by eliminating 1,000 existential threats to their rule, there will always be the 1001st threat that leads to their collapse. This is the law of history.

Let’s begin the countdown: five, four, three, two, one…









From a Successful Lawyer to a Civil Rights Activist — An Exclusive Interview With Ding Jiaxi, March 19, 2020.

Indictment of Citizens Movement Advocate Ding Jiaxi — A Full Translation, October 16, 2021.

Citizens Movement Advocates Xu Zhiyong and Ding Jiaxi Indicted for Subversion on Scant, Slanderous ‘Evidence’, China Change, September 25, 2021

Prominent Human Rights Activist Ding Jiaxi Tells Lawyer Details of Torture Throughout His Year in Custody, China Change, February 5, 2021

5 responses to “Authoritarianism Shall Perish – Ding Jiaxi’s Court Statement”

  1. The overwhelming majority of Chinese say they have enough democracy and 96% of them are happy with the country’s direction.

    Meanwhile, the overwhelming majority of Americans say they DON’T have enough democracy and 32% are happy with the country’s direction.

  2. […] Mr Ding said he believed in China’s nonviolent political transformation. “No matter how many doubts, difficulties, or setbacks I have encountered, or torture I have personally endured, I will not change my steadfast beliefs.” He wrote. […]

  3. […] Ding Jiaxi promised to persist in her beliefs and stated it was the “historic accountability” of his era to “get rid of the autocracy”: […]

  4. […] Ding Jiaxi vowed to persist in his beliefs and stated it’s the “historic duty” of his era to “eradicate autocracy”: […]

  5. […] meanwhile, stressed the inevitability of the regime’s collapse, writing, “I see the day when the people of China wake up from […]

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