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Breaking (Heart!) News : Al Jazeera English to close China Bureau. Says their correspondent Melissa Chan: "Yes my press credentials have been revoked and I will no longer report f/ China. More from @AlJazeeraPR: http://see.sc/Fksv69
Bob Dietz of the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists said Chan's case, the first expulsion of a journalist since 1998, "marks a real deterioration in China's media environment and sends a message that international coverage is unwanted"
8-5-2012 .- CNN International on line
Family and supporters have vanished. Others are under house arrest. All are gagged from speaking as part of China's crackdown over the Chen Guangcheng diplomatic firestorm. CNN's Stan Grant looks at China's biggest human rights crackdown in decades.
CNN.com : Activits case exposes China crackdown
Chen Guangcheng fears detained nephew may be tortured (7 May 2012)
Chinese activist recovering after house arrest says he is concerned about 'lawlessness' in home province of Shandong
The blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng has said he fears his nephew may be beaten and tortured after being detained by police.
Although Chen was confident last week's high-level deal between China and the US would ensure his own wellbeing and freedom of movement, he told the Guardian he was concerned about the vulnerability of his relatives because of the "lawlessness" of his home province of Shandong.
The activist, who escaped from house arrest and initially fled to the US embassy last month, is now recuperating in a Beijing hospital.
But it has emerged that his nephew, Chen Kegui, is being investigated in connection with a bloody fight that broke out when local officials tried to enter the family home in Linyi, in Shandong province, after the escape.
The nephew previously said he stabbed one of the intruders in an act of self-defence. His lawyer, Liu Weiguo, who is being closely monitored by the police, said he was unable to talk freely about the case, which was still under investigation, but he feared the arrests of family members could hinder Chen's departure.
"It is hard to know how the local authorities will act as they do not seem to behave rationally," Liu said. "But if more family members are arrested, it will be less likely that Chen can go abroad. Maybe he will end up stuck in China." Chen said he was unaware of his nephew's condition, but his own experience in Linyi had taught him to fear the worst.
"My nephew certainly can't be in good condition in their hands. He'll certainly be tortured there … The public security organs, procuratorial organs and people's courts are absolutely lawless in Shandong province."
Jonathan Watts in Beijing
guardian.co.uk, Monday 7 May 2012
Read more : The
The Wall Street Journal Asia, Hong Kong (7 May 2012)
Crackdown in China
The Chinese government clamped down on activists and online media in the wake of the dramatic escape of a blind human rights advocate from home imprisonment, an embarrassing development for Beijing that could complicate U.S.-China relations if he is found to be in U.S. protective custody. At least three activists were detained following the escape of Chen Guangcheng, a legal advocate who has fought forced abortions in China.
Read more: The San Francisco Gate - The San Francisco Chronicle
Crackdown on Human Rights Defenders in China [GALLERY]
By Marc Jayson Climaco
Chen Guangcheng is one of many human rights defenders in China who have been tortured, detained, and harassed by the government. Despite an already dire human rights situation the country, Chinese human rights defenders have become increasingly vulnerable over the past year and a half. The Chinese government has increased its crackdown against its dissidents to prevent the wave of democracy movements that swept Arab countries from spreading into its borders.
In 2011, at least 200 people, including many lawyers “disappeared,” and this year, the government is increasing its use of unofficial detention centers–so-called “black jails”–to hold dissidents. The country has also sentenced several prominent activists to lengthy prison terms. “There’s been a significant crackdown on dissension, political discussion, even the rights and the activities of lawyers who advocate on behalf of people who have been poisoned from tainted food and medicines,” U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke said earlier this year.
Human Rights First has urged the United States to go beyond occasional shows of support and establish a consistent policy of engagement with defenders and civil society in China and other countries. Reliable U.S. support–through embassies or other means–is critical in bolstering the work of human rights defenders around the world and increases protection to those at risk. Check out some of the cases in China that we are monitoring.
Human rights first : Crackdown on Human Rights Defenders in China
Originally published May 6, 2012 at 6:24 PM | Page modified May 7, 2012 at 4:26 PM
Gary Locke gets respect as human-rights defender in Chinese crisis
Chen Guangcheng's escape from house arrest and a U.S. decision to give him sanctuary in the U.S. Embassy gave Gary Locke his first crisis as ambassador, made him a target of criticism from Beijing and earned him respect from the human-rights lobby.
By CHRISTOPHER BODEEN
The Associated Press
BEIJING — As a former U.S. commerce secretary and Washington governor, Gary Locke wasn't considered much of a heavyweight on human rights when he became the first Chinese-American ambassador to Beijing last year. Trade and maintaining smooth relations between Washington and its biggest foreign creditor were seen as dominating his agenda.
Yet, nine months on, Locke's key role in the drama over blind legal activist Chen Guangcheng has put him on the front lines of U.S. concerns about China's embattled dissident community.
Chen's escape from house arrest and a U.S. decision to give him sanctuary in the U.S. Embassy gave Locke his first crisis as ambassador, made him a target of criticism from Beijing and earned him respect from the human-rights lobby.
"He is setting a new precedent for future U.S. ambassadors" on human rights, said Bob Fu of the Texas-based rights group ChinaAid, who has been in close contact with Chen and the Obama administration over the case.
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