Civil and political rights

  • China: Veteran Chinese democracy activist forcibly held in psychiatric unit
    June 9, 2015

    Authorities in Shanghai have been forcibly holding Mr Qiao Zhongling, an elderly veteran of China’s 1978 pro-democracy movement in psychiatric facilities for more than five years. According to a whistle-blowing psychiatrist, he has been transferred between three separate psychiatric hospitals in Shanghai over the past five years. Qiao was designated a counterrevolutionary during the political turmoil of the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), before joining the Democracy Wall movement instigated by Wei Jingsheng and a handful of other dissidents, and then started the Shanghai Democracy Forum in 1978.

  • Malaysia: Hong Kong student activist barred from entering Malaysia
    May 26, 2015

    On 26 May 2015, Mr Joshua Wong, a prominent Hong Kong student leader was detained by Malaysian immigration officers shortly after arriving at Penang International Airport. He was supposed to speak at several forums in Malaysia on June 3, the eve of the 26th anniversary of the suppression of the Tiananmen Square protests.

  • Thailand: Anti-junta activists arrested on one-year anniversary of 2014 coup
    May 25, 2015

    On 22 May 2015, Mr Sirawit Serithiwat, a student activist from Thammasat University, Mr Pansak Srithep, a pro-democracy activist and the father of a boy killed by the military during the 2010 political violence, and Mr Wannakiet Chusuwana, a pro-democracy activist and taxi driver, key members of Resistant Citizen, were arrested on their way to file a criminal charge against the Thai junta leader for staging a coup d’état in 2014. They were brought to the police station and later released.

  • Thailand: Red shirt activist was detained for selling t-shirt to help Thai political prisnors
    May 21, 2015

    On 19 May 2015, Mr Anurak Jentawanit, a red-shirt activist and an expatriate were detained for selling and buying campaign t-shirts to help Thai political prisoners.

  • Indonesia: West Papuan leader denied entry by United States
    May 18, 2015

    On 13 May 2015, West Papuan independence leader Mr. Benny Wenda was stopped by the United States Office of Homeland Security from boarding a Virgin Atlantic flight between London and Los Angeles.

    Mr. Wenda lives in exile in the United Kingdom. In 2003 he was granted political asylum by the British government following his escape from custody while on trial. He has acted as special representative of the Papuan people in the British Parliament, United Nations and European Parliament.

  • Malaysia: 2 activists briefly detained over the rally
    May 6, 2015

    On April 28, Ms. Maria Chin Abdullah, Executive Director (ED) of Persatuan Kesedaran Komuniti Selangor (EMPOWER) and Mr. Mandeep Singh, member of the BERSIH 2.0 Secretariat, programme manager, were arrested and later released after questioning over their roles in the #KitaLawan rally on March 28. Both of them were investigated under section 143 of the Penal Code for unlawful assembly.

  • China: Activist and his wife forcibly disappeared
    April 21, 2015

    Since March 2015, Mr. Qin Yongmina, a veteran Chinese dissident and Ms. Zhao Suli, his wife, have been forcibly disappeared. They were taken byby state security police officers and have been heard of since. Though many others detained or forced by state security police to take “vacations” during the National People’s Congress (NPC) in March 2015 have since reappeared, there is no such news about the couple.
    UPDATE:
    On 22 September 2016, authorities in the central Chinese city of Wuhan once more prolonged the pretrial detention of Qin Yongmin. His wife is still missing. Qin was initially detained in 2015 alongside his wife Zhao Suli, but Zhao disappeared several weeks later, and hasn’t been seen for months.

  • China: NGO Yirenping targeted by authorities
    April 17, 2015

    On 14 April 2015, the local human rights group Yirenping, linked to five women’s activists who were released on 13 April 2015, was threatened by the authorities. foreign affairs ministry spokesman Hong Lei said the activists were from Yirenping and that the organisation “will be punished for violating the law”. The details of the allegations and the punishment threatened were not given. The group has been locked out of its Beijing office after the police conducted a raid in March 2015.

  • Burma: Student activist from All Burma Federation of Students Unions (ABFSU) arrested
    April 10, 2015

    On 8 April 2015, Po Po, a member of the All Burma Federation of Student Unions (ABFSU) and participant in the main boycott student column, was arrested at her home in Thanlyin Township, Yangon. She was arrested for participating in the boycott student column in Heldan on 10 March. Four other student leaders from the ABFSU, including Kyaw Ko Ko and Nanda Sit Aung, have been charged under various sections of the penal code.

  • India: Greenpeace India accounts frozen by Indian government
    April 10, 2015

    On 9 April 2015, bank accounts of Greenpeace India were frozen by the Indian governments after accusing the international environment campaign group of encouraging “anti-development” protests in the emerging economic power.

    The Union Home Ministry suspended the official registration for foreign funding of Greenpeace India for six months and froze seven bank accounts connected with the organisation.