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Crime & Corruption

China: Many freed from Beijing’s biggest ‘black jail’

A man walks through a former black jail, part of a large-scale system of secret detention centres in Beijing where dissidents are held to prevent them from lodging formal complaints with the central government.

A man walks through a former black jail, part of a large-scale system of secret detention centres in Beijing where dissidents are held to prevent them from lodging formal complaints with the central government.

Hundreds of petitioners have been released from one of Beijing’s biggest “black jails” – detention centres where people from across the country are illegally detained after petitioning against local injustices.

The unusual mass release, which coincided with Tuesday’s Rule of Law Promotion Day, encouraged many petitioners, who took it as a signal that the new Communist Party leadership intends to rein in the practice.

But some rights activists and lawyers called on authorities to take much more drastic measures, with some noting that petitioners who arrived in the capital over the past two days have still been detained.

The release came amid extensive mainland media coverage of recent charges filed by prosecutors against a number of people who allegedly operated black jails in Beijing, sparking debate over whether top authorities are trying to curb the illegal treatment of petitioners.

A well-known detention hub in southern Beijing’s Jiujingzhuang village, officially named the Jiujingzhuang Relief Services Centre, released more than 300 petitioners on Tuesday night, two petitioners from Zhejiang province said.

They were sent to the centre in several batches by bus starting early in the morning and released together that night, according to the two petitioners, who were among those released. The total number of people detained that day remains unclear, although some online postings claimed it reached 10,000.

Shen Zhihua, a woman from Zhejiang’s Anji city, said she was detained in a room called “Zhejiang hall” after arriving at the China Central Television Tower in Haidian district in an attempt to petition. She was immediately whisked away, along with dozens of other petitioners, to Jiujingzhuang in the morning.

“There are dozens of other halls in the centre, one for each province,” she said. Petitioners were placed in different halls according to the region they were from, and those in the “Zhejiang hall”, numbering 300 to 400 by the end of the day, were set free.

She said two other petitioners from Shandong told her that the “Shandong hall” was emptied that night too.

Shentu Dabing, a petitioner also from Anji, said he saw dozens of halls in the centre, but could not see how many people were there.

Petitioners traditionally gather in front of the state television tower on Rule of Law Promotion Day, and police are well prepared for this, said Li Wei, a petitioner from Beijing. He estimated that about 1,500 people were taken from the tower by bus to Jiujingzhuang on Tuesday.

He said he didn’t see policemen pulling petitioners onto the vehicles as in past years. “Some who did not get onto the buses said in private, ‘It seems things are better this year’,” he said.

Chen Yongmiao, a Beijing-based political analyst and rights activist, doubted that was true. “People tend to wish for things to get better when a new leader takes office and one simple gesture can be interpreted as a big move,” Chen said.

He said comments that new party leader Xi Jinping made about China’s legal situation on Tuesday were almost the same as what President Hu Jintao said 10 years ago.

Yuan Yulai, a lawyer from Zhejiang specialising in administrative lawsuits, said authorities must be more proactive.

“The people’s congresses at provincial levels should be given more rights in regard to the appointment and removal of cadres, so that many cases in which people are now petitioning the central government can be solved locally,” he said.

Source: SCMP “Many freed from Beijing’s biggest ‘black jail'”

About chankaiyee2

Author of the book "Tiananmen's Tremendous Achievements" about how with the help of Tiananmen Protests, talented scholars with moral integrity seized power in the Party and state and brought prosperity to China. The second edition of the book will be published within a few days to mark the 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Protests All the parts in the first edition remain in the second edition with a few changes due to information available later and better understanding. There are also some changes for improvements of style. The new parts are Chapters 12-19 on events in China after the first edition was published: The fierce power struggle for succession between reformists and conservatives; Xi Jinping winning all elders’ support during his mysterious disappearance for 2 weeks in early September, 2012; and Xi Jinping Cyclone. Chan Kai Yee's new book: SPACE ERA STRATEGY: The Way China Beats The US An eye-opening book that tells the truth how the US is losing to China. The US is losing as it adopts the outdated strategy of Air-Sea Battle while China adopts the space era strategy to pursue integrated space and air capabilities: It is losing due to its diplomacy that has given rise to Russian-Chinese alliance. US outdated strategy has enabled China to catch up and surpass the US in key weapons: Hypersonic weapons (HGV) that Pentagon regards as the weapon that will dominate the world in the future. Aerospaceplane in China’s development of space-air bomber that can engage enemy anywhere in the world within an hour and destroy an entire aircraft carrier battle group within minutes. Anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons, anti-ASAT weapons, stealth aircrafts, drones, AEW&C, etc. The book gives detailed descriptions of China’s weapon development based on information mainly from Chinese sources that the author monitors closely. U.S. Must Not Be Beaten by China! China is not a democracy. Its political system cannot prevent the emergence of a despotic leader or stop such a leader when he begins to bring disasters to people. A few decades ago, Mao Zedong, the worst tyrant in world history did emerge and bring disasters to Chinese people. He wanted to fight a nuclear war to replace capitalism with communism but could not bring nuclear holocaust to world people as China was too weak and poor at that time. If a despot like Mao Zedong emerges when China has surpassed the US in military strength, world people will suffer the misery experienced by Chinese people in Mao era. China surpassing the US in GDP is not something to worry about as China has the heavy burden to satisfy its huge population, but China surpassing the US in military strength will be world people’s greatest concern if China remains an autocracy. US people are of much better quality than Chinese people. What they lack is a wise leader to adopt the correct strategy and diplomacy and the creative ways to use its resources in developing its military capabilities. I hope that with the emergence of a great leader, the US can put an end to its decline and remain number one in the world. China, US, space era strategy, air-sea battle, space-air bomber, arms race, weapon development, chan kai yee


3 thoughts on “China: Many freed from Beijing’s biggest ‘black jail’

  1. Reblogged this on Oyia Brown.


    Posted by OyiaBrown | December 6, 2012, 6:42 pm


  1. Pingback: China: Local secret police beat petitioner to death « China Daily Mail - December 15, 2012

  2. Pingback: China’s central authority bans interception of petitions « China Daily Mail - January 14, 2013

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