Human rights lawyer freed, but under heavy surveillance



Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Chen Guiqiu (right) with Xie Yang's lawyers.
(Photo: ChinaAid)
ChinaAid

(Changsha, Hunan—Aug. 22, 2017) A prominent human rights lawyer who has been imprisoned since July 2015 was recently released and remains under close surveillance at home, ChinaAid learned recently.

Xie Yang, an attorney taken into police custody on July 11, 2015, was allowed a limited amount of freedom after being moved back into his home this month. Following his trial on May 8, 2017 Xie vanished, and authorities rented an apartment opposite Xie’s in Changsha, Hunan, and installed a gate in the hallway that could only be opened by a finger print scanner.

When Chen Guiqiu, his wife who fled from China to the United States in March, learned of this development, she told the international media. The attention it garnered prompted the government to remove the gate, and Xie was allowed to move into his home. Currently, he is allowed to move about Changsha as long as he provides officials with an update of his activities every four hours and asks for permission whenever he wishes to leave the city. Officials tail him when he leaves the building, and cameras monitor the hallway outside of his home.

In an interview, Chen described these events, as well as her resolve to sue the government for the various abuses enacted against their family, including the freezing of their bank accounts.

During Xie’s time in prison, he revealed that he had been tortured and the lawyers appointed by his family were blocked numerous times from being able to meet with him. On Jan. 13, Xie wrote a declaration stating that he was not guilty, and, if he should confess to his subversion charges, it would be either due to continued torture or for the sake of his family.

ChinaAid exposes abuses, such as those suffered by Xie and his family, in order to stand in solidarity with the persecuted and promote religious freedom, human rights, and rule of law.


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