June 1, 2010
BEIJING — Early in the evening of May 31, when Christian human rights defense attorney Li Heping went to the residence of fellow attorney Tang Jitian in Beipingfang, Beijing to get some things he had left there, he was taken by the police to Beipingfang Village Police Station for interrogation, allegedly on suspicion of burglary.
On the afternoon of May 30, officers from Beipingfang Village Police Station of Chaoyang District, Beijing knocked on the door of Tang Jitian’s residence. Tang Jitian refused to open the door because it was Sunday. The officers waited downstairs, but in the early evening Tang Jitian left his residence through a passageway and stayed outside for the night. His disappearance did not sit well with the police, who continued their surveillance of his residence.
The next afternoon (May 31), attorney Li Heping, who only months before endured heavy police surveillance himself, arrived at Tang Jitian’s residence to get some clothes. As he was leaving, the police waiting downstairs seized him and took him to the police station for interrogation. Li Heping was released later that night at 10 p.m. The police claim Li Heping was taken on suspicion of burglary, but their intentions were clearly to gain any information on Tang Jitian’s whereabouts.
Less than two months ago, on April 12, 2010, Tang Jitian and his friend Liu Wei had their lawyer's licenses taken away by the government, supposedly for causing disturbance in the courtroom. This latest attempt to detain Li Heping on "suspicion of burglary" is another example of measures used to intimidate human rights defense attorneys in China. Read previously posted interview with Li Subin concerning this widespread problem.
Phone numbers of guards on duty at Beipingfang Police Station:
13901255367, 01085527478 (Cui Yonggang)
12901224905, 010-85574570 (Hu Zhijun)
Phone number of Li Heping the attorney: 12910576638
Phone number of Jiang Tianyong the attorney: 13001010856
ChinaAid protests the repeated oppression and fabricated accusations leveled against human rights attorneys by Chinese government officials. We ask the international community to encourage and pray for the attorneys such as Li Heping and Tang Jitian who speak on behalf of others even as they themselves suffer injustice.
Tracy Oliver, Media Coordinator
Tel: (267) 210-8278, or Tracy@ChinaAid.org
Mark Shan, CAA Spokesperson
Tel: (267) 205-5210, or Mark@ChinaAid.org
Website: www.ChinaAid.org and www.MonitorChina.org
ChinaAid grants permission to reproduce photos and/or information for non-fundraising purposes, with the provision that www.ChinaAid.org is credited. For more information, contact Tracy@ChinaAid.org.