China's Social Activists Appeal for an Investigation into the Shanwei Massacre
Ding Zilin, a member of the Tiananmen Mothers organization, and Liu Xiaobo, a renowned Chinese writer and democratic activist, along with several others, published a statement regarding the Shanwei Massacre of peaceful villagers by the CCP on December 10th—International Human Rights Day. The statement appealed to the government to conduct an independent investigation into the Shanwei Massacre that occurred on December 6, 2005.
Authorities in Shanwei City, Guangdong province, opened fire on villagers who were protesting for land that had been illegally expropriated by the local government.
Ding and Liu also started an on-line public petition.
The statement included the following urgent requests:
- 1. Central authorities must take action to stop the violent suppression, remove the armed police surrounding the village, and prevent the situation from escalating. They must also guarantee the safety of the villagers who are defending their homes and their rights.
- 2. The government and judicial branch should investigate the massacre of unarmed people. They should encourage the Guangdong People's Congress and the National People's Congress to form an investigation committee and to have the courage to investigate crimes committed by the government.
- 3. Authorities should allow media interviews and reports while ensuring the rights and safety of the reporters. Public scrutiny and questions should be allowed.
- 4. The government officials who gave the orders to open fire on innocent citizens, and the police involved in the violence should be investigated and punished by the law.
- 5. Authorities should announce a list of casualties as soon as possible, comfort and aid the family members of those killed, and supply aid to those who were wounded.
- 6. Lands should be commandeered according to the constitution and the laws. The villagers whose lands were taken should be given market-price compensation and helped to relocate. Appropriate compensation should be determined at a public hearing. Any land expropriated without following this legal procedure should be returned to the owner.
- 7. The government should legally investigate and punish the corrupt officials who illegally took the lands around the location of the planned power plant.
- 8. Authorities must peacefully resolve this horrifying incident and start to reform the political system. Maintain the independence of the judiciary and the media. Open local elections. Gradually give the citizens freedom of speech, freedom of belief, freedom of association, and democratic elections, as well as the other basic rights guaranteed by the constitution.
According to Radio Free Asia, by December 13th, three days after publishing this statement, 10,000 people had already signed the petition. A majority of these people were from Mainland China.
The petition is only available in Chinese at this time.
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