It caused panic and indignation among the farmers protesting the appropriation of their farmland when the Huidong Police Station in Zigong City announced, “If you don’t admit you are wrong for protesting, we will inject you with the AIDS virus.”
On June 30, farmers from Baiguo Village, Zigong City, Sichuan Province protested the local government’s seizure of their land and the rough treatment by the riot police sent by Zigong City government to quell the subsequent protest. Eight people were arrested and six of them are still being held in the Huidong Police Station.
According to the farmers who were released, the rule inside the police station is simple. Regardless of one’s gender, age, or disability, you must declare that you are wrong to protest and sign a letter guaranteeing that you won’t protest anymore. The farmers were not allowed to speak. If they said a word, they were beaten until they capitulated. For those “stubborn” farmers who refused to cooperate, the police threatened, “If you don’t plead guilty, we will inject you with the AIDS virus.”
The announcement caused panic amongst the local people as most of them took the threat seriously. The police have a reputation for being ruthless. They are reputed to use any tactics to control the people. People are worried that if someone is injected with the AIDS virus, it will threaten the health of everyone in the area.
According to local farmers, the farmers still in detention include Huang Guangzong, Chen Shoulin, Li Maokui, Hu Shuming (disabled), Zeng Zhengying, and Wu Liping. Most of them were chosen by the villagers to uphold the rights of their neighbors.
Wu Liping (female) was beaten by three policemen during the protest. The officers grabbed her hair and violently smashed her head against a car. She bit one policeman when he pressed on her neck to subdue her. She was subsequently arrested.
Huang Guangzong is over 60 years old. In the police station, the officers continuously slapped his face.
On June 30 and July 1, about 200 farmers, who had lost their land, went to Huidong Police Station to urge the police to release the detained farmers. They went to the police station in groups of a dozen people at a time. As of July 3, the detained farmers had still not been released.
The farmers also visited Huang Shuming and Zhou Qiwan, protestors admitted to hospital for treatment of the injures sustained during their arrests. According to the visitors, the local government refused to pay the hospital fees, so the hospital stopped all treatment and told the two patients to leave. However, when the patients and their visitors asked the hospital to certify that the men’s conditions were suitable for discharge from hospital, the hospital staff refused to do so. However, the hospital still stopped all medication and treatment.
When asked to comment on the incident, Liu Zhengyou, a famous human rights activist said, “July 1 is the anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). It is also a day of tragedy for the farmers. With no land, the oppressed farmers do not even have food to eat. Now, their situations will be even more difficult. I cannot see when the misery of these farmers will end. When will thes corrupt CCP officials be punished? And what is China’s future?”
Liu also commented that the local officials have “twisted hearts, degenerated morals, and no respect for the law or god.”