On Sept. 1, when many first-graders in China were excited about their first day of school, the six-year-old daughter of blind human rights lawyer Chen Guangcheng had to stay home because her parents are under house arrest.
Rights activist Liu Shasha said in a twitter message that she and several other activists went to Dongshigu Village in Linyi of Shandong Province, Chen’s hometown, on Aug. 26, and found that Chen and his family are still under house arrest.
Liu also said that the authorities hired some people to set up barriers around the village to prevent outsiders from entering. Liu published every move on her trip on twitter in case she got into any danger.
Liu said the director of Linyi Education Bureau met with them and said Chen’s daughter Kesi met school entrance requirements. He assured Liu that the county education bureau and the township government would make sure that the child gets to go to school.
Previously, authorities said that Chen did not register his daughter’s hukou residence permit. Liu told Radio Free Asia (RFA) that people believed Kesi had no residence registration, but a relative called and posted a scan of Kesi’s residence registration online showing that her registration was completed last year.
Chen gained worldwide prominence for exposing forced abortions and sterilizations that are part of the Chinese regime’s one-child policy. For this work he was sent to prison for over four years, and also suffered repeated torture. Upon his release on Sept. 9, 2010 he was put under house arrest and has been isolated from the rest of the world.
In June the U.S.-based China Aid Association published a letter by Chen’s wife Yuan Weijing describing prolonged beatings she and Chen endured and harassment the entire family has suffered at the hands of local officials.
Recently Chen has been subjected to violent beating again, Bob Fu, President of China Aid Association quoted a source as saying.
Ms. Pearl from Nanjing, one of a group of activists concerned about Chen, told RFA that the family’s situation has gotten worse since local authorities started the construction of a house near Chen’s residence. She said she and other activists would continue to monitor any developments.