Posts Tagged ‘arrest’

TRUE HERO: British soldier faces 10 years for decision to speak out against war

November 12, 2009
Morning Star Online, Wednesday 11 November 2009
by Lizzie Cocker
DISASTER ZONE: Joe Glenton has been arrested after speaking out against injustice and illegality of the war in Afghanistan

DISASTER ZONE: Joe Glenton has been arrested after speaking out against injustice and illegality of the war in Afghanistan

Anti-war Lance Corporal Joe Glenton has been arrested and faces 10 years in jail for bravely honouring his moral responsibility to speak out against the illegal occupation of Afghanistan.

The serving soldier faces up to seven charges after he defied orders to address 10,000 demonstrators last month in Trafalgar Square and told the media that he did not believe the war was legitimate or in the nation’s interest.

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Pioneering human rights lawyer Xu Zhiyong faces trial in China

August 19, 2009

Xu Zhiyong became famous when he took up the cause of Sun Zhigang, a student who died in a detention centre in 2003

Xu ZhiyongXu Zhiyong is a co-founder of Gongmeng, a legal group which has dealt with some high-profile human rights cases. Photograph: Greg Baker/AP

Chinese authorities have formally arrested a pioneering lawyer, more than two weeks after security officials took him from his home at dawn. His lawyer warned today that he was likely to face a trial.

Xu Zhiyong, 36, is one of the best-known human rights lawyers in the country and co-founder of Gongmeng, a legal group that has dealt with some of the most sensitive cases in recent years. He is accused of tax evasion and, if found guilty, could face up to seven years in prison.

“It’s not an indictment. But in the usual run of things, I expect the procuratorate will take the case to court, and the court is very unlikely to reject their case,” Xu’s lawyer, Li Fangping, told Reuters.

Amnesty International alleged in a statement: “The charges of tax evasion are a simple ploy to shut down the Open Constitution Initiative [Gongmeng].”

It added that Zhuang Lu, a staff member detained at the same time as Xu, had also been arrested.

Gongmeng has taken on high-profile cases, including the parents of children made ill by tainted baby milk formula, and issued a report criticising the handling of unrest across the Tibetan plateau.

Xu’s arrest comes amid a broader crackdown on activist lawyers, in which more than 50 have lost their licences to practise, and the curbing of other dissent in the run-up to the 60th anniversary of Communist party rule in October this year.

China urged to release scholar Liu Xiaobo

December 24, 2008

Liu Xiaobo has been detained for over two weeks

Liu Xiaobo has been detained for over two weeks

© Private

Amnesty International, 23 December 2008

After more than 14 days in detention it now appears that Chinese authorities intend to seriously prosecute the dissident literary scholar, Liu Xiaobo, for signing up to a campaign for political and rights reform.

Liu Xiaobo has been detained for over two weeks without the Chinese authorities releasing information about his arrest. Anyone held for longer than 14 days without formal arrest is considered a “major suspect” by Chinese criminal procedure law.

Charter 08, initially signed by approximately 300 Chinese scholars, lawyers and officials, proposes a blueprint for fundamental legal and political reform in China, with the goal of a democratic system that respects human rights. Since the Charter 08 launch, Chinese authorities have questioned and harassed numerous signatories, but Liu Xiaobo remains the only known signatory in detention.

Amnesty International has urged China’s authorities to release Liu Xiaobo immediately. Liu Xiaobo is one of China’s best-known dissidents. He was arbitrarily detained twice previously for his writings and his support of the 1989 pro-democracy movement in Beijing, when he spent several years in detention.

“If Liu Xiaobo is to ultimately be charged with state security crimes, it would be yet another example of how Chinese authorities are using the criminal law to squash pleas for reform,” said Roseann Rife, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Asia Pacific Programme.

Chinese authorities seized Liu Xiaobo at his home in Beijing on 8 December, two days before the Charter 08 planned launch, which was timed to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Amnesty International has called on the authorities to make public any information about his alleged crimes, the charges against him and his current whereabouts. Liu Xiaobo should also be allowed full access to legal counsel of his choice.

The police failed to give Liu Xiaobo’s family information about where he was detained or to provide a detention notice within 24 hours. These are both violations of the Criminal Procedure Law and the public security regulation regarding the procedures for handling criminal cases. Liu’s family-appointed lawyer has been unable to speak with Liu Xiaobo.

“The Chinese authorities must stop the ongoing harassment, detention, prosecution and imprisonment of Chinese human rights defenders and activists who peacefully exercise their constitutional rights to freedom of expression and association,” said Roseann Rife. “We urge that that they free Liu Xiaobo immediately.”

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Online petition for release of Liu Xiaobo

Leading Chinese dissident, Liu Xiaobo, arrested over freedom charter

December 10, 2008

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