The observatory has been informed by Human Rights in China (HRIC) of the detention of Mr. Yan Zhengxue, who is actively involved in human rights campaigns and an outspoken human rights promoter, as well as a well-known artist and dissident. In the lead up to the meeting of the Central Party Committee of the 16th Party Congress, Mr. Yan was arrested and secretly detained by the State Security Department police on September 14, 2004.
Mr. Yan Zhengxue has been involved in the defence of human rights for many years. In 1993, Mr. Yan Zhengxue had sued the Beijing Public Security Bureau for violent injury and violation of human rights, after which he was detained on trumped-up charges and sent to an RTL camp. He was subsequently released.
In late 2003, when Mr. Yan went to Zheijiang local police for protection, after thugs sent by the Taizhou City Procuratorate, intimidated his mother while he was in visit to the United States, the police not only refused to help but also tried to discredit him with slander. In June 2004, Mr. Yan Zhengxue sued the Beijing and Zhejiang Public Security authorities for slandering his reputation with false information.
Mr. Yan’s present detention probably reflects an effort by the authorities to prevent any trouble during this politically sensitive time. The Observatory is very concerned with Mr. Yan Zhengxue’s arrest and expresses its fears for his physical and psychological integrity.
LRWC received information from Observatory that Mr. Yan Zhengxue was released without charge on the same day or the day after being detained, on September 14, 2004.