China's Human Rights Worsens before Hu Jintao's Visit to Germany

By Tian Yi, Radio Free Asia
November 12, 2005 Updated: November 12, 2005

Amnesty International and other international human rights organizations are requesting the German government to show concern for China's human rights situation during the period of time the Chinese Communist Party leader Hu Jingtao will be visiting Germany. Before the visit, what happened in the Benxi Forced Labor Camp, Liaoning Province, China, had made the human rights issue worse.

Chinese Chairman Hu Jingtao visited Germany on the 10th. Before his visit, international human rights organizations such as Amnesty International appealed to the Germany's Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and the newly elected future Chancellor Angela Markel to clearly express concern towards China's human rights during the visit.

Before the visit, related German government departments put forth concrete effort on the Jiang Renzheng's case *. However, on the night of November 9, there an unexpected sharp turn on Jiang's case came from China. Our reporter interviewed Ms. Wiesburg, member of the committee to rescue Jiang Renzheng.

Wiesburg: “Before Hu's visit to Germany, the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs took measures to arrange for Jiang Renzheng and his family to fly back to Germany on November 11. At the same time, when they proposed this to the CCP Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the ministry did not respond and something unexpected happened.

On November 9, the head of the Benxi Forced Labor Camp rushed to Jiang's parents-in-law's home in Shenyang city and took Jiang's passport that had just been approved by the Shenyang city police department. He threatened Jiang that if he did not give up his passport, he would be sent back to the forced labor camp. Jiang was told not to leave Benxi city or Shenyang city or he would have big trouble.”

Regarding the response to this news in Germany:

Wiesburg responded to this sudden incident: “The German rescue group has already appealed to the heads of the German government to bring up Jiang's case in their meeting with Hu Jingtao. After Jiang and his family's departure was disrupted, the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs has already expressed to Falun Gong practitioners in Germany that they will propose Jiang's release and his family's return to Germany during Hu's meetings. If Jiang Renzheng and his family can not be back to Germany during Hu's visit, there could be a series of negative consequences.”

*Jiang Renzheng and his wife Guo Rui were Falun Gong practitioners who had requested asylum in Germany. However, the German government mistakenly thought that they were not Falun Gong practitioners and sent them back to China in on March 7, 2005. After Jiang returned to China, the CCP authorities arrested him on April 8 for “disrupting the order of the society” and sent him to the Benxi Forced Labor Camp. Jiang was sentenced three years in the camp without any legal proceedings. (see )