World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers


Liu Xianbin, China, jailed since June 2010

Liu Xianbin, China, jailed since June 2010

Article ID:

17655

Day 28
Country: China
Journalist: Liu Xianbin
Media: Writer
Jailed since: June 28, 2010

Suggested Tweets:

'30 Days for Freedom' campaign calls for release of Liu Xianbin and all journalists jailed in #China bit.ly/PTdiNB #FreethePress

Share the '30 Days for Freedom' campaign protest letter to call for the release of Liu Xianbin bit.ly/R3gbfO #FreethePress


Pro-democracy activist Liu Xianbin was sentenced to ten years in prison in March 2011, after a trial lasting only two hours, on charges that his writing slandered the Communist party. The case was largely centred around articles published by overseas Chinese-language websites that advocated for democracy and human rights. His wife Chen Mingxian said he shouted in the courtroom, “I'm not guilty.”

Share our protest letter bit.ly/R3gbfO

Liu, a founding member of the China Democracy Party, was initially arrested on June 28, 2010 but in reality has spent much of his career in and out of Chinese jails. At 20, he participated in the Beijing Tiananmen Square democratic movement that demanded political reform and an end to corruption. Despite a military crackdown, Liu persevered with his writing and in 1991 he was sentenced to nearly three years in jail. Upon his release in 1993 he continued to organise and was again sentenced to 13 years for “state sedition” on the basis of his writing. He was eventually released in November 2008. For a brief 20 months, he enjoyed freedom with his wife and daughter, who was then 13 years old.

One month prior to his latest arrest, an American website had posted anonymous messages to people in a handful of Chinese cities urging them to stand up against Communist Party rule. As uprisings swept the Middle East and North Africa, police acted hastily to quell protests in China. Liu's sentencing came amid a wave of arrests, concluding with criminal charges being handed down to nearly two dozen writers, lawyers and rights advocates while another 11 people were held in police custody.

China has an abysmal record for jailing journalists, with a total of 32 behind bars in 2013, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. The majority of local press is state controlled while the government's close watch on foreign journalists has intensified recently with the holding back of visas to publications perceived to have published negative coverage of the country. Journalists for Bloomberg News and the New York Times were also expelled after revealing the private fortunes of some top Chinese politicians.

 

Suggested Tweets:

'30 Days for Freedom' campaign calls for release of Liu Xianbin and all journalists jailed in #China bit.ly/PTdiNB #FreethePress

Share the '30 Days for Freedom' campaign protest letter to call for the release of Liu Xianbin bit.ly/R3gbfO #FreethePress

 


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wm_WanIfra

Date

2014-05-01 11:21

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Andrew Heslop

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