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Wang Yu, July 1, 2018   Wang Yu (王宇), born 1971 in Inner Mongolia, was a lawyer with the Beijing Fengrui Law Firm when she was abducted in the early morning of July 9, 2015. The date of her detention marks the beginning of, and gives name to, the most notorious human rights event over the last two years – the 709 Crackdown. That same evening, her husband and son, en route to Australia for the son to attend school, were also detained. Wang Yu and her husband Bao Longjun, also a lawyer, were released on bail in August 2016 and the family of three was sequestered in an apartment in Ulan Hot, Inner Mongolia, under severe surveillance. This continued until late 2017, when they […]


Wu Gan, March 24, 2017 Well-known human rights activist Wu Gan (吴淦) was arrested in May 2015. After a brief period of custody in his home province Fujian, he was taken to Tianjin as part of the 709 arrests. According to a complaint filed by his lawyer, on August 1, 2015, Wu Gan was forced to participate in a video interview with CCTV host Dong Qian (董倩) in which he was supposed to confess his guilt. He refused to follow the script. Yesterday his lawyer posted online Wu Gan’s letter to Ms. Dong Qian, dated March 8. — The Editors     Dear Ms. Dong Qian, I write this letter to you because I still have a thin thread of hope in your basic humanity. […]


Yaxue Cao, November 27, 2016     Ms. Liu Huizhen (刘惠珍) is a villager in the District of Fangshan (房山区), on the southwestern outskirts of Beijing. She’s a victim of forced demolition who fought hard to preserve her property but lost it anyway. This year, she is one of the 70 or so Beijing residents who organized to compete for seats as district People’s Representatives. China held its once-every-five-year grassroots elections for county-district level People’s Representatives on November 15. In a joint statement, Ms. Liu and other independent candidates promised that “they will make sure every voter knows who they are and how to reach them with their problems, and as their representatives, will monitor the government and its functions.” Financial Times, Washington Post, and […]


By Matthew Robertson and Yaxue Cao, published: July 27, 2015   On the heels of a nationally coordinated campaign of arrests and disappearances of rights lawyers in China, Party-run media have aggressively attacked, framed, and sought to defame the same lawyers in articles and news reports (here, here, and here). In one CCTV segment in particular, Wang Yu (王宇), one of China’s most prominent rights defenders, was portrayed as a menace to court order as she loudly remonstrated with bailiffs. Wang was, along with four other lawyers, attempting to defend three practitioners of Falun Gong, a spiritual practice that is heavily persecuted in China, in a court in Shenyang, Liaoning Province last April. On July 19, nine days after Wang Yu had been taken away […]


By Wang Qinglei, published: December 9, 2013 On November 27th, 2013, I finished all of the paperwork and walked out of China Central Television’s east gate, the place where I had worked for ten years. It was the coldest day in Beijing since winter began this year. The only warmth I was able to feel was from the comment an old, retired “auntie” made as I walked through the resignation procedures: “Ten years! You left your youth behind with CCTV and they are letting you go like this?” Who would have thought, in ten years time, what moved me in the end was the sigh of this old woman whom I did not know at all. Despite the mental preparation I had weeks to make for […]


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