(June 16, 2011 – Linyi, Shandong) In a letter released by China Aid yesterday, the wife of blind activist Chen Guangcheng tells the story of their torture under house arrest. Yuan Weijing writes:
They beat and tortured my husband Chen Guangcheng and me for more than 2 hours . . . More than 10 men covered me totally with a blanket and kicked my ribs and all over my body . . . I saw more than ten men surrounded Chen Guangcheng, torturing him. Some of them twisted his arms forcefully while the others were pushing his head down and lifting his collar up tightly.
Yuan’s letter also states that the police sealed their windows with sheets of metal, seized their computer, confiscated their books, stole Chen’s blind cane, and grabbed toys belonging to their young daughter. Further, Chen has been denied medical treatment and his health is in jeopardy. Yuan’s letter ends with a plea for legal action to protect her family. The full text of her letter is below.
Why is the Chinese Communist Party determined to crush Chen? The CCP wants the world to think that its One Child Policy is voluntary. Chen, however, exposed the systematic use of forced abortion and involuntary sterilization in implementing this policy. Time Magazine named him in its list of “2006’s Top 100 People Who Shape Our World.” The Chinese Communist Party, however, handed him a four year jail sentence. His family has been languishing under house arrest since his release in October, 2010.
Chen Guangcheng is the “Tank Man” against China’s One Child Policy. Impoverished, beaten and blind, Chen nevertheless possesses the surpassing backbone to stand alone against the grinding juggernaut of this totalitarian regime. The CCP apparently perceives in Chen a real threat to its crumbling legitimacy.
In pressing for justice for Chen and his family, let us not forget those for whom he has sacrificed his freedom: the families of China who are being shattered daily by forced abortion, forced sterilization and infanticide. The coercive enforcement of China’s One Child Policy causes more violence against women and girls than any other official policy on earth. It is the greatest women’s rights issue in the world today. No one supports forced abortion, because it is not a choice.
Women’s Rights Without Frontiers condemns the house arrest of Chen and his family. We demand their immediate release and medical attention.
To sign a petition to free Chen (with the World Youth Alliance), click here.
To see a four minute video, “Stop Forced Abortion in China!” click here.
Here is a translation of the full text of Yuan’s letter:
February 18, 2011, led by the vice secretary of the Communist Party of Shuanghou Town, Zhang Jian and some National Security Policemen, a group of 70-80 guys stormed through my home gate. They beat and tortured my husband Chen Guangcheng and me for more than 2 hours. Without showing any legal documents and without any of them wearing a uniform, they plundered almost everything from my home. My husband and I were wounded severely, yet not allowed to leave home for any medical aid.
More than 10 men covered me totally with a blanket and kicked my ribs and all over my body. After half an hour’s non-stop torture, I finally squeezed my head out of the blanket. I saw more than 10 men surrounded Chen Guangcheng, torturing him. Some of them twisted his arms forcefully while the others pushing his head down and lifting his collar up tightly. Given his poor health condition of long-time diarrhea, Guangchen was not able to resist and passed out after more than two hours of torture. My left eyebrow bone and one of my bottom left ribs might be broken. My left eye lost vision for 5-6 days because of the bruise, blood in the white of my eye, and swollenness. Even today, I still cannot stand with my body straight and I suffer pain when breathing. At the same time we were being tortured, the other men performed a thorough search with all kinds of detective equipment. They took away our computer, video camera, audio tape recorder, all of our chargers, and even flashlights, etc.
When they were searching, they kept silent. None of them had uniforms on, neither did they showed any legal document to us. They did not even give us a receipt for the confiscated items of our family property. Before their departure, Zhang Jian said to us that they were following orders from higher-level officials, and he expected we understood that without his explanation. He ordered those men to drop us on the ground, and left with them.
We had to stay in bed because of the wounds, having difficulties turning around our bodies. We had no access to any medical aid. On Feb 19 they only allowed me to get a one-time IV injection from a village doctor. No more medical aid afterward.
On March 3, they sealed our windows with sheets of metal. On March 6 they cut off electric power. At midnight of March 7, the guards crept into our home and cut off our TV antenna. In the morning of March 8, the electric power was back. On the same day, Zhang Jiang led 40-50 men storming into my home and took away our old computer, some hand written materials, DVD player and the remote, and all of the materials about Chen Guangcheng’s case. Zhang punched my head with his fist because I confronted him by asking why they were robbing us.
On March 17, Zhang Jian led another group of 40-50 men into my home with a few dozen huge bags. They sacked all of our property which they thought they should take into the bags, including all of our books, the posters of our children on the wall, the calendar, Guangcheng’s blind cane, all of our papers, worn power plugs, antenna, wires, etc. March 22, they installed two video cameras on our home gate and southwest corner of our courtyard so they can monitor my home completely.
Since Feb 24, our five-year-old daughter has been under house arrest, just like us, without being allowed to step outside of home. They took her books and some toys away. She said in her own words, “I am such a girl to be pitied. They robbed everything from me.”
Guangcheng’s mother is closely followed and physically monitored by 3 men every day, step by step, even when she works in the farm’s field. After mid-March, she was not allowed to go out even for buying vegetables. Therefore our daily life has gotten too hard to survive. Besides, Guangcheng’s health condition got worse. The blood from his diarrhea turned to dark instead of red as before. That is why I am so worried.
Once you have received this letter, please manage to let our friends Teng Biao, Zhai Minglei, Jiang Tianyong, Zhang Yongpan, etc, know. Please ask them to follow legal procedures in taking action against the crime of robbing my home and injuring us purposefully, or to use other means to help us. They already told Guangcheng’s mother twice that they plan to move us to an empty courtyard in font our village.
Translation courtesy of the China Aid Association, http://www.chinaaid.org/2011/06/detained-blind-activist-chen-guangcheng.html
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