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Amnesty International Report 2014/15 – China: Arbitrary Detention and Torture Continue

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Tuidang Center In its Human rights report for 2014/2015, Amnesty International states: “This has been a devastating year for those seeking to stand up for human rights and for those caught up in the suffering of war zones”. Here we present excerpts from the report concerning China:

  • The authorities continued to severely restrict the right to freedom of expression. Activists and human rights defenders risked harassment and arbitrary detention. Torture and other ill-treatment remained widespread and access to justice was elusive for many.
  • The National People’s Congress officially abolished China’s notorious Re-education Through Labour system in December 2013. Following its abolition, the authorities made extensive use of other forms of arbitrary detention, including Legal Education Centers, various forms of administrative detention, “black jails”, and illegal house arrest.
  • Torture and other ill-treatment remained widespread.
  • Human rights defenders continued to risk harassment arbitrary detention, imprisonment, and torture and other ill-treatment for their legitimate human rights work. The crackdown on rights activism intensified during the year.
  • The Chinese leadership increased its efforts to systematically restrict freedom of information. In late 2013, the Communist Party set up a group to “coordinate internet security”.
  • In June, the All China Lawyers Association released draft regulations that would prohibit lawyers from discussing ongoing cases or writing open letters, or from criticizing the legal system, government policies and the Communist Party.
  • In June, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television banned journalists from reporting on issues or areas outside their current field of reporting and from posting critical articles that had not been approved by their work unit.
  • The authorities continued to use criminal law to suppress freedom of expression, including by detaining and imprisoning activists whose internet postings were viewed more than 5,000 times or re-posted more than 500 times.
  • People practicing religions banned by the state, or without state permission, risked harassment, arbitrary detention, imprisonment, and torture and other ill- in treatment. The authorities demolished churches and removed crosses and crucifixes. Those who worship Christianity in “house churches” and Falun Gong practitioners, continued to face persecution.
  • Uighurs faced widespread discrimination in employment, education, housing and curtailed religious freedom, as well as political marginalization.
  • Ethnic Tibetans continued to face discrimination and restrictions on their rights to freedoms of religious belief, expression, association and assembly. The number of known self-immolations since March 2011 rose to 131. The authorities targeted some relatives and friends of those who self-immolated for allegedly “inciting” or “abetting” such acts.
  • From July through December 2014 large-scale protests took place in Hong Kong. In September Police used tear gas and pepper spray attempt to disperse thousands of peaceful protesters who had gathered in streets near the administrative headquarters. Journalists covering the protests complained that police prevented them from doing their job. In late November police used arbitrary force against protesters, journalists and bystanders. 955 people were arrested in relation to the Occupy protests and more arrests would be made later.
  • Fears for the right to freedom of the press were raised when Kevin Lau Chun-to, the former chief editor of Ming Pao newspaper, was removed from his post in January. Under Lau, Ming Pao had reported on alleged human rights violations and wrongdoings of high-ranking officials in Hong Kong and China.
  • In Macau, pro-democracy academics reported being targeted for their political participation and criticism of the government.
[divider]   The full report on China: https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/asia-and-the-pacific/china/report-china/ The complete Amnesty 2014/15 report: https://www.amnesty.org/en/annual-report-201415/]]>

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