News & Views

Defying China’s increasingly intensive and brutal crackdown on dissent , filmmaker Hu Jie recently released Spark , a documentary that exposes the horrific reality of the Great Famine of 1958-1961 through interviews with survivors. The three-year famine resulted in the deaths of as many as 45 million Chinese. The Communist Party continues to cover up the underlying political causes and...Read more
Prominent rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng was released from prison on August 7 after serving a three-year term for “violating probation rules.” Gao, a self-taught lawyer who the Communist Party once heralded as one of China’s top ten attorneys, first ran into trouble in 2005 when he renounced his Communist Party membership in an open letter detailing the torture and sexual abuse his clients endured at...Read more
Chinese authorities released whistleblowing journalist and blogger Liu Hu after holding him in detention for nearly a year. Police detained Liu in August 2013 on suspicion of “fabricating and spreading rumors” after he accused a deputy director of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce of dereliction of duty while serving as Communist Party secretary of a district in southwestern...Read more
Chinese prosecutors formally charged Ilham Tohti , a moderate Uighur rights advocate, with “separatism,” a charge that carries the death penalty. Tohti has remained in secretive detention in remote Xinjiang Province since January. Although Tohti engaged in nonviolent activism aimed at promoting dialogue between Han Chinese, which is the ethnic group that comprises 92% of the Chinese population,...Read more
After spending more than a decade on the run from Chinese family planning officials, the United States granted Zhou Xiaoping and her family political asylum . Chinese authorities targeted Zhou because of her decision to have three children, a violation of Chinese family planning policies. To escape persecution, Zhou and her family first fled their hometown in Hunan Province to hide out in Tibet...Read more
On Monday, public security officials in the city of Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province demolished the ten-foot crucifix that had been placed on the roof of the Longgang Township Gratitude Church. The destruction of the Church’s rooftop cross, the sole religious symbol affixed to the exterior of the building, is only the latest in a string of demolitions of Christian symbols ordered by governments in...Read more
A Chinese court sentenced blogger Dong Rubin to six years in prison for writing about official corruption and abuses of power on his popular blog. He was found guilty of conducting “illegal business operations” and “fabricating and spreading online rumors for economic gain.” The general manager of Dong’s Internet consulting company, Hou Peng, was also found guilty in connection with Dong’s online...Read more
The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) held that the incarceration of petitioner Xing Shiku in a psychiatric hospital amounts to arbitrary detention . Chinese public security officials committed Xing in the Daowai District Psychiatric Hospital in Harbin, Heilongjiang on account of his frequent trips to Beijing to protest local corruption and the privatization of the state-owned...Read more
Hu Jia, a prominent rights activist, was viciously beaten while walking home on Wednesday night. Hu, who claims plainclothes police officers carried out the attack, posted a picture of his bloodied face on Twitter shortly after the beating. Hu has long championed politically sensitive economic, social, environmental, and public health causes. He began his activism in the early 2000s when he...Read more
The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (UNWGAD) issued an opinion asserting that the imprisonment of Uighur scholar Ilham Tohti amounts to arbitrary detention. Chinese authorities arrested Mr. Tohti, an economist at Beijing Minzu Univeristy, on January 15, 2014, subsequently charging him with “participating in separatist activities,” forming a criminal gang under his lead,” "recruiting...Read more