Beijing—At 1:25 p.m. on April 6, 2007, my phone rang, showing an unfamiliar number. When I picked up the phone, I heard a voice that had disappeared eight months ago.
It was China's conscience, human rights attorney Gao Zhisheng. He had attempted to send me his letter, but the letter was not sent through the post office. Instead, he conveyed it to me over the telephone.
I have waited for this call for almost four months during my house arrest and my trip. Gao had attempted to make this call over the past several months, especially after the Chinese New Year.
Gao belongs with his family. To protect his family, he tolerated the humiliation of house arrest and continual surveillance for almost four months. At last, it became so unbearable that Gao finally had to speak out about his experience.
Jailed at Home
He hopes that his wife and children can escape the hell on the earth created by the political and legal System of the communist regime in China.
Friends of Gao who have been imprisoned said, “Though Gao was released from jail, he took his suffering home with him. If he had stayed in jail, the suffering would have stayed with him in jail.” According to the law, what crime has he committed and what crime has his family committed?
Gao was arrested on Aug. 15, 2006. When he was released on Dec. 22, many people in China and abroad thought he and his family would gain relative freedom. In fact, when people visited the Gao family not long ago, they saw many plain-clothes police surrounding the outside of his residential community, the front of his building, and the corridor. The Gao family was under surveillance around the clock.
Witnesses also saw wounds on Gao's legs because of the long-term inquisition by torture. Overseas reporters were also unreasonably hindered when they wanted to interview Gao's wife.
After Gao's letter is made public, the regimes political and legal system will definitely seek to revenge Gao and his family. His wife and his daughter will probably not escape the fate of being insulted and beaten. Gao might be jailed again.
Rescuing Gao's Family
The mission to rescue Gao's family has not ended. The second stage has just started. The Gao family is still far from real freedom.
What can we do for the Gao family? Everyday people in Beijing can become witnesses to history by walking by Gao's home and witnessing plain-clothes officers all around the community.
We can use different languages and media to let the world know how the national mafia in Beijing bullies the Gao family. We will ask human rights organizations at home and abroad, and international media to investigate all the facts about Gao's case.
I believe that one day everyone responsible for and involved in this case from the Political and Judiciary Commission, Ministry of Public Security, procuratorates, and courts, to the state security system will be publicly revealed. The names of those who use all means to attack human rights defenders will be publicized. All crimes they committed will be reported in detail. They will be condemned and tried.
Hu Jia In Beijing, April 6, 2007