Human Rights Lawyers Beaten in China

Repression continues under authoritarian leader Xi Jinping

Xi Jinping
Xi Jinping / AP
June 26, 2015

Human rights lawyers in China are increasingly under threat of physical violence from local officials, according to a rights group.

Chinese Human Rights Defenders (CHRD) reports that another lawyer was recently beaten, adding to a spate of attacks on rights advocates in recent months:

In the latest incident of such violence, lawyer Wang Quanzhang (王全章) was beaten in a Shandong courthouse, and he and two of his colleagues also were briefly detained. On June 18, Wang and lawyers Chen Zhiyong (智勇) and Shi Fulong (石伏龙) attended a court hearing for their client at Dongchengfu District People’s Court in Liaocheng City. During the defense statements, Wang was repeatedly interrupted before the presiding judge expelled him from the courtroom. Several bailiffs then dragged Wang to a separate room and assaulted him, hitting him in the face and head and tearing off his clothes. Wang reportedly suffered a slight fracture to his nose. At the same time, other bailiffs barred Chen and Shi from leaving the courtroom and subjected them to full body searches. Lawyer Chen was released from custody around 11 p.m. Wang and Shi were taken to Huxi Police Station in Dongchengfu District, where officers questioned them and confiscated their computers and storage devices. Wang and Shi were released around 2 a.m. the next morning.

The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention declared last month that Ding Jiaxi, another human rights lawyer in Beijing, is being held unlawfully by the Chinese government. Ding is serving a three-and-a-half-year prison sentence for participating in an anti-corruption campaign.

While Chinese President Xi Jinping has said he will tackle corruption in the Communist Party, activists say he has only escalated a crackdown on dissidents and religious minorities.

Published under: China , Xi Jinping