China: lawyers of detained defender held for a dayEvent
- Initial Date
- Jan 16, 2021
- Event Description
On January 16, 10 minutes prior to boarding a high-speed train (D2655) to visit the parents of Lawyer Chang Weiping (their client), two human rights lawyers Chen Keyun and Xie Yang disappeared. Recently, Lawyer Chang's parents had demonstrated against Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials' secretive imprisonment and torture of their son.
At 11:15 am, January 16 (Beijing time), human rights lawyer Xie Yang texted his location to Chen Guiqiu, his wife: Xi’an North Station. At approximately 10 pm, when Ms. Chen phoned both Lawyer Xie and Lawyer Chen, the calls did not go through. She also phoned Mr. Xiang Xianhong a security agent in charge of Lawyer Chang’s case but he did not answer her call. Around 11 pm, Ms. Chen phoned three other security agents in Changsha, Hunan Province (Mr. Li Kewei, Mr. Li Yang, and Mr. Peng Jinsong). Although the phone calls got through to these lawyers in charge of Lawyer Xie Yang’s case, none of them answered.
Ms. Chen did not receive any information about Lawyer Xie until 6 am January 17. At that time, she learned that Lawyer Xie and Lawyer Chen Keyun had been missing for more than 22 hours.
ChinaAid strongly urges Shaanxi police: “Conform to China’s rule of law and the United Nation’s articles concerning human rights. Stop blatantly infringing on the personal rights of Lawyer Xie Yang and Lawyer Chen Keyun.
Hunan rights lawyer Xie Yang, who recently tried to visit Baoji to support Chang's family, told RFA: "We found out from Chang Weiping's wife that his parents are now under close surveillance, and that the authorities have installed CCTV cameras at the door [of their home]."
Xie said he boarded a high-speed train to Baoji along with fellow lawyer Chen Keyun, but was intercepted by state security police at the provincial capital, Xi'an, where he needed to change trains.
"No sooner had I gotten off the train than I ran into a bunch of people," Xie told RFA in a recent interview. "They claimed it was to do with the pandemic, because my health code didn't scan properly, and that I should cooperate with their investigation."
"But those people didn't look like pandemic prevention types to me; they were state security police from [the provincial capital of] Xi'an," he said. "I told them that they knew perfectly well who I was, and that I knew perfectly well who they were."
The police forced Xie and Chen to leave the high-speed rail station, confiscated their phones and ID cards, and took them to a hotel, where they were held in separate rooms.
They were told they wouldn't be allowed to continue to Baoji, and stability maintenance personnel, or "interceptors," from their hometowns of Changsha and Guangzhou were summoned to escort them back home again.
On returning to Changsha, Xie was placed under house arrest.
"They don't want this information to reach the outside world," Xie said. "There have been rumors going around that [Chang Weiping's parents] have now been detained, but ... nobody can get anywhere near [their home]."
"They are so worried that we will expose the truth," he said. "Maybe they are also worried that we might encourage more supporters to gather."
- Impact of Event
- Gender of HRD
- (Arbitrary) Arrest and Detention
- Intimidation and Threats
- Judicial Harassment
- Restrictions on Movement
- Rights Concerned
- Freedom of movement
- Right to healthy and safe environment
- Right to liberty and security
- Right to privacy
- Monitoring Status
- Event Location
- Summary for Publications
On 16 January 2021, Chen Keyun and Xie Yang, human rights lawyers, were held for a day by the police and prevented from visiting the parents of a detained human rights lawyer that the pair is assisting in Xi'an, China.
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