February 10, 2017
In China today, there are human rights lawyers being held in prison cells, deprived of food, water and sleep and repeatedly tortured and taunted by those who hold them.
The charge against them is subversion. They are treated as enemies of the state.
They have dared to take on the government and defend those who have had their rights abused.
For this, they are accused of sabotaging the country’s legal order. For this, they have found themselves suddenly thrust into the back of an unmarked police car and held for months, or in some cases years, without trial.
This week we spoke to the parents of Jiang Tianyong. They have been warned not to speak to journalists – especially foreign journalists – but they were willing to take the risk because they believe that it will only be pressure from the international community that ultimately helps their son.
His mother Wei Ziyuan said: “I am so worried. We’ve been told they are torturing lawyers. Sometimes, they are not even allowed to drink water.”
They told us their son’s only crime was to try to help others.