The Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights and against Violence in China started at 6:00 a.m. February 4, 2006, with attorney Gao Zhisheng and Mr. Ye Shuang in the first leg for 48 hours, Hu Jia and Qi Zhiyong in the second, Guan Zengli and Mr. Li in the third, and Zhao Xin and Mr. Guo Feixiong in the fourth for 48 hours.
The relay hunger strike reached a new level as Ms. Sheng Xue, Ms. Wang Dan and other individuals of conscience in and outside out China actively responded by joining the strike following the arrest of Mr. Guo Feixiong who went to fast and petition in front of the Xinhua Gate of Zhongnanhai in Beijng, China's central government compound.
Since the Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights Support Group is not an organization or agency, but an ad hoc gathering of volunteers with no efficient communications among them and facing obstacles from the Chinese communist regime, it proves difficult for the group to effectively keep up with the current dynamic developments as a result of the massive responses across China and overseas. It is even harder for it to persist in the long-term, relentless, moderate, systematic, and non-violent resistance.
In order to quickly address the situation and following consultations with Gao Zhisheng, Zhao Xin, Hu Jia and other rights activists, we hereby formulated the following tentative program, and sincerely hope that individuals and friends who share our belief in China and overseas will spread the information, coordinate with and support one another, and push our cause forward!
- 1. The intent of the Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights and against Violence: To protest the evil violent abuse of civil rights and to safeguard human rights, democracy, and the rule of law.
- 2. The strategy of the Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights and against Violence: Be rational and self-restraint; steady and systematic; selfless and firm in upholding human rights and resisting violence.
- 3. The purpose of the Relay Human Strike for Human Rights and against Violence: Stop China from falling down the vicious cycle of violence with our conscience and life, and bring it back to the great and right path towards peace, constitutional rule, and democracy.
- 4. We suggest that individuals of conscience in and outside of China contact one anther quickly and recommend and elect coordinators for the Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights and against Violence in their local places. They should divide their work into different levels and work in collaboration. They should also make public their contact information such as their telephone numbers, email addresses, mailing addresses, QQ, MSN, or SKTPE.
- 5. The first group of volunteer coordinators in mainland China are: Gao Zhisheng (010-81990759, 010-51630281, 010-51630282), Hu Jia (13501091828, 010-86000663), and Qi Zhiyong (010-86268964).
- 6. The first group of overseas volunteer coordinators are: Gao Jie and Tang Yuanjun. (Contact information to be announced later)
- 7. Starting from the fourth leg of Zhao Xin and Guo Feixiong, each leg in the hunger strike will consist of two persons, which will ensure the movement last longer and be carried out in a more rational, forceful, moderate, and systematic manner.
- 8. Each leg of participants should do the following: make an opening statement regarding their hunger strike; provide their striking place and telephone numbers; agree to be interviewed by the press and monitored by the pubic; and end their strike with a concluding statement.
- 9. Prospective participants from China are advised to contact strikers and file their applications with the coordination team. Each leg of strikers decide on the participants of the next leg and tell the public the names and contact information of the next leg in their opening or concluding statements, so that the media or any parties concerned may contact them if need be. This will not only strengthen communication by forming a chain of interaction and network of support, but also reduce pressure and burden for Gao Zhisheng and other volunteers.
- 10. Prospective participants who have no Internet access may contact volunteer coordinators who will help them post their opening and concluding statements and arrange interviews and observations, etc.
- 11. Individuals of conscience in or outside of China are advised to call the strikers every day, and send text messages, emails to them. It would be even better if they could go and see the strikers on the spot. Each support, each greeting, each blessing, and each involvement are all building blocks for the edifice of China's peace, constitutional rule, and democracy.
- 12. The Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights Support Group will, on a need basis, make public authoritative information related to rights advocacy and resistance against violence in China in the form of announcement, urgent announcement, statement, notice, open letter, report, investigation report and so on.
The above is the tentative program for the Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights and against Violence in China. It will be revised and updated based on the new developments.
Latest news on the rights advocacy and resistance against violence: no information is available on the whereabouts of Mr. Guo Fexiong, who was taken by secret police from the police precinct in Fuyou Street; Hu Jia and Qi Zhiyong were kept under house arrest by police after they participated in the hunger strike. At one point, Mr. Hu got physical with the police for 20 minutes as he tried to get out of his house for personal reasons. Mr. Qi Zhiyong told the police that he needed to go to the hospital and one inhumane police officer responded, “You are the root of the scourge, and you deserve to die of an illness!”
Here we want to make a strong appeal to the Hu-Wen administration to release Guo Feixiong and return freedom to Hu Jia, Qi Zhiyong and other citizens.
Starting from 6:00 a.m. February 10, 2006, Mr. Qian Yumin, a famous worker rights activist from Beijing (Tel: 13520762465), Mr. Liu Zhengyou, a famous farmer rights activist from Zigong County, Sichun Province (Tel: 0813-8791056), and Mr.Yang Zaixin, a famous rights attorney from Guangxi Province (Tel: 13517898996) will take over from Zhao Xin and Guo Feixiong, and begin the fifth 48-hour leg of hunger strike.
Published by the Support Relay Hunger Strike for Human Rights Support Group Thursday, February 9, 2006
Reprinted with permission from Boxun News Service