July 30, 2019
Prominent Chinese human rights activist and journalist Mr Huang Qi, founder of the website 64 Tianwang who for a number of years has monitored human rights violations in China and promoted freedom of press, was put on trial behind closed doors on 14 January 2019 at the Mianyang City Intermediate Court in Sichuan Province. He was sentenced in a non-public trial on 29 July to 12 years on charges of “illegally providing State secrets to foreign entities” and “intentionally leaking State secrets”.
In April 2018, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention found that Mr Huang’s deprivation of liberty was arbitrary and in contravention with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The defendant’s rights under China’s Criminal Procedure Law and international law obligations to a fair trial, without undue delay, and to proper defence and access to a lawyer of his own choice, have not been respected. Neither his family nor the lawyer it had appointed were able to attend the trial.
In line with their declared aim of strengthening the rule of law, we expect the Chinese authorities to abide by China’s international law obligations, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and respect the rights of all citizens as guaranteed by China’s Constitution.
The European Union expects the immediate release of Huang Qi, as well as other detained and convicted human rights defenders and lawyers including Yu Wensheng, Wang Quanzhang, Qin Yongmin, Gao Zhisheng, Ilham Tohti, Tiyip Tashpolat, Tashi Wangchuk, Li Yuhan, Wu Gan and Liu Feiyue.