martes, 28 de junio de 2016

It is no time to speak of a ‘golden era’

Is China facing a New Cultural Revolution?

By Fiona Bruce & Benedict Rogers

In January, Chinese blogger Zhang Haitao was jailed for 19 years simply for criticising the Chinese government. Two years ago, Chinese activist Cao Shunli died after being denied medical treatment while in prison. Last December, Hong Kong bookseller and British citizen Lee Po disappeared, believed to have been abducted by Chinese agents from Hong Kong and taken across the border to mainland China. Another bookseller, Gui Minhai, a Swedish citizen, was abducted from Thailand and became one of many in recent months to be apparently forced to make a ‘confession’ on national television in China.

A Uyghur Muslim intellectual, Ilham Tohti, whose focus is promoting dialogue and reconciliation, was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2015. Writer Liu Xiaobo is serving an eleven-year prison sentence, the world’s only Nobel Peace Prize Laureate in jail. Since 9 July last year, over 300 human rights lawyers and their associates and relatives have been detained, harassed and in some cases charged with ‘subversion’. In Zhejiang province, between 1,500-2,000 Christian crosses on church buildings have been forcibly removed or destroyed by the authorities. Repression in Tibet and Xinjiang continues, the persecution of Falun Gong goes on, new laws further restricting civil society have been imposed and there is evidence to suggest that the barbaric practice of organ harvesting – the forced removal of internal organs from live individuals, often prisoners of conscience, for transplant – is accelerating. Hong Kong’s basic freedoms are being eroded.

These are just some of the many examples we heard in our inquiry on human rights in China, held by the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission.


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