Daily Archives: 16/02/2016

China: Le Haut-Commissaire aux droits de l’homme profondément préoccupé par la répression des avocats et militants en Chine

le 16 février, 2016

Le Haut-Commissaire des Nations Unies aux droits de l’homme, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, a déclaré mardi avoir fait part de sa préoccupation et demandé des clarifications aux autorités chinoises sur les arrestations récentes d’avocats et sur le harcèlement et les intimidations de critiques du gouvernement et employés d’ONG.

« Nous assistons à un schéma très inquiétant en Chine, qui a de graves conséquences sur la société civile et le travail important qu’elle réalise à travers tout le pays », a déclaré le Haut-Commissaire. « Les acteurs de la société civile, qu’il s’agisse d’avocats, de journalistes ou d’employés d’ONG, ont le droit de faire leur travail, et il est du devoir de l’Etat de les soutenir et de les protéger », a-t-il dit.

Le Haut-Commissaire a déclaré qu’il avait apprécié d’avoir pu aborder ces cas avec les représentants chinois à Genève et reconnu leurs efforts pour clarifier les sujets abordés. Toutefois, les réponses qu’il a reçues indiquent que les autorités « trop souvent, par reflexe, confondent le rôle légitime des avocats et militants avec des menaces à l’ordre public et à la sécurité. »

La police chinoise a détenu quelque 250 avocats, assistants juridiques et militants des droits de l’homme à travers tout le pays, depuis le début de la répression début juillet, bien que nombre d’entre eux aient été relâchés ultérieurement. Le mois passé, 15 autres avocats des droits de l’homme ont été formellement arrêtés, dont dix ont été accusés dur crime de « subversion de l’Etat », une accusation passible d’une peine pouvant aller de 15 ans d’emprisonnement à la prison à vie.

– See more at: http://www.ohchr.org/FR/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=17050&LangID=F#sthash.T8S3Zg6p.dpuf



China: UN Human Rights Chief deeply concerned by China’s clampdown on lawyers and activists

February 16, 2016

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said on Tuesday (Feb 16) he had raised concerns and sought clarifications from Chinese authorities about the recent arrests of lawyers, and harassment and intimidation of government critics and non-governmental organisation (NGO) workers.

“We are seeing a very worrying pattern in China that has serious implications for civil society and the important work they do across the country,” the High Commissioner said. “Civil society actors, from lawyers and journalists to NGO workers, have the right to carry out their work, and it is the states’ duty to support and protect them,” he said.

The High Commissioner said he appreciated the opportunity to raise such cases with Chinese officials in Geneva, and acknowledged their efforts to clarify matters. However, the responses he received indicate that the authorities “too often reflexively confuse the legitimate role of lawyers and activists with threats to public order and security”.









China: “Too Risky to Call Ourselves Defenders”: CHRD Annual Report on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders in China (2015)

February 15, 2016

Among the Chinese HRDs persecuted in 2015 (clockwise from top left): activist Wu Gan (吴淦), activist Su Changlan (苏昌兰), rights lawyer Pu Zhiqiang (浦志强), NGO director He Xiaobo (何晓波), rights lawyer Wang Yu (王宇), and activist Tang Jingling (唐荆陵).

(Among the Chinese HRDs persecuted in 2015 (clockwise from top left): activist Wu Gan (吴淦), activist Su Changlan (苏昌兰), rights lawyer Pu Zhiqiang (浦志强), NGO director He Xiaobo (何晓波), rights lawyer Wang Yu (王宇), and activist Tang Jingling (唐荆陵).)

In 2015, Chinese authorities’ persecution of human rights defenders followed a trajectory of increasing severity and prevalence, which has become a hallmark of President Xi Jinping’s three-year leadership. Authorities escalated the relentless assaults on fundamental liberties, further tightened the stranglehold on expression, reduced the already contracted space for civil society, and utilized hardnosed methods to rein in human rights defenders (HRDs). During the year, government authorities targeted HRDs who have tried to use available channels to seek justice and push for implementation of the country’s constitutional and international commitments to protect human rights. Officials particularly focused on human rights lawyers, who put themselves at risk in defending the legal rights of persecuted rights activists, political dissidents, and ethnic and religious minorities.

Prompting alarmed reactions and criticism from inside and outside the country, the Xi leadership pushed for draconian laws to legitimize the escalating persecution of HRDs, including rights lawyers, as well as anyone perceived as challenging Xi’s policies. Examples of these laws include the National Security Law passed in July and the Ninth Amendment to the Criminal Law issued in August, which have already been used by authorities to punish the exercise of basic liberties.

2015 will go down in history as the year that Chinese authorities launched an unprecedented attack on China’s human rights lawyers. Since July, in coordinated nationwide operations, police summoned more than 300 lawyers and activists for interrogation and put many under secret detention, including some in “residential surveillance in a designated location,” a de facto type of enforced disappearance. For months, authorities deprived the detainees access to legal counsel and refused to inform families of their whereabouts. At the time of this report, 22 lawyers and activists remain in custody from this crackdown; 19 of these have been formally arrested, including 16 in January 2016. Of the 19 arrested, all but three face charges of “subversion” or “inciting subversion of state power.” These individuals are all being punished for seeking justice—boldly challenging the CCP-ruled government’s interference in the judiciary, standing up for clients’ rights, and refusing to yield to state pressure. In addition, throughout the year, rights lawyers continued to be subjected to violent beatings while carrying out their professional work in defending their clients. CHRD documented eight incidents of violence—against 13 defense lawyers— between January to June 2015.

“Too Risky to Call Ourselves Defenders”: CHRD Annual Report on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders in China (2015)