[ Chinese Police Harass Rights Advocates ]
Beijing authorities arrested hundreds of petitioners from Shanghai during and before the 5th Plenary Session of the Communist Party Central Committee, held Oct. 15-18. Most of the petitioners were held in black jails. Rights activists and attorneys around the country were also harassed and placed under surveillance.
On Oct. 16, Zhang Guilan, a petitioner from Shanghai, sent out a message from a relief station—a type of shelter for the homeless and needy, now mostly used to detain petitioners. Zhang said that on the opening day of the 5th Plenary Session, about 500 petitioners from Shanghai were taken to the relief station. Around 100 were picked up outside the Great Hall of the People and taken to Jiujingzhuang, a centralized black jail in Beijing. There were even more people detained at the Jingxi Hotel, he said.
Li Jianrong, one of the petitioners from Shanghai, lost his clothing business when the building was unlawfully confiscated by local authorities. “I went to Beijing because my basic rights have been violated,” Li told The Epoch Times: "Many people have been driven out of their properties by forced eviction. Citizens do not have basic rights; this is a calamity of Chinese law.”
Li was taken back to a Shanghai police station for questioning on Oct. 16, and later detained in a hotel where security guards beat him, he says.
Another petitioner from Shanghai, Lou Qin, said after his house was forcibly demolished, he has gone to Beijing to appeal every month. On the day of the 5th Plenary Session, he also attempted to go, but was intercepted and sent back to Shanghai by train late at night. Lou said there were 86 petitioners from Shanghai on the same train, and 44 more on the next one.
Beijing human rights attorney Jiang Tianyong had 24-hour surveillance police stationed outside his home. In the afternoon of Oct. 11 Jiang discovered that he could not open his front door because someone had filled the keyhole with super glue. When he questioned the surveillance police, the man said he knew nothing about it.
Jiang told New Tang Dynasty Television (NTDTV): “I would say without doubt that the security police did it. They did not want me to go outside, and also wanted to scare me.
“These are the things the police of the People’s Republic of China does. They are breaking the law by unscrupulous means. This must change. What kind of world will it be, if it does not change?”
Sun Wenguang, a retired college professor from Shandong Province, has also been under close surveillance. “Police officers from the Public Security Bureau are outside my building. They want to restrict my freedom. This tells me that the Chinese Communist Party has no regret and no intention to change for the better,” he said in a telephone interview with NTDTV.
He Yang, a filmmaker who has documented the persecution of Chinese human rights lawyers, was also put under house arrest, according to a Hong Kong-based media.
Beijing human rights attorney Pu Zhiqiang disappeared on the night of Oct. 10, and Chengdu writer Ran Yunfei was summoned by authorities for a “chat.”
Beijing attorney Li Heping told Sound of Hope Radio (SOH) that in order to “maintain stability,” the regime has intensified oppression of human rights activists and petitioners. “It is exactly because of the regime’s oppression that stability will not be achieved,” Li said.
Dr. Fan Yafeng, a Beijing law scholar, told SOH he believes the pressure for social reform in China has reached a tipping point. He said the regime’s extensive persecution of religious groups, grassroots activists, human rights activists, and dissidents is proof that the regime is on the verge of collapse.
“Over the past few years, the stability maintenance budget has surpassed the military budget. From a financial point of view, stability maintenance definitely cannot be achieved too much longer,” Fan said.