New Citizen’s Movement to fight to the end
Beijing has sentenced New Citizens’ Movement founder
Xu Zhiyong to a four year jail term.
What are other official crackdowns from Beijing will follow
the landmark case of the New Citizens’ Movement,
and what is the general public’s reaction and response
to the heavy sentence?
New Citizens’ Movement members Ding Jiaxi, Li Wei, Yuan
Dong and Zhang Baocheng, accused of disturbing public order,
were tried on Jan. 27 in the Beijing Haidian District Court.
This latest incident following Xu Zhiyong’s trial
has once again drawn media attention globally.
Beijing Intermediate People’s Court delivered Xu Zhiyong’s
four years in prison sentence on Jan. 26.
The court was heavily guarded during Xu’s trial on Jan. 22.
The police cordoned off the outside of the court,
and tightly secured the surrounding area.
Many visitors in support of Xu Zhiyong petitioners were
driven away, beaten and arrested.
A CNN reporter trying to do a live broadcast report
was also shoved into a police van in front the camera.
Liu Jinxing, artist: “Because of Xu Zhiyong’s trial and the
New Citizens’ Movement, it (CCP) would not let us go to the
The police are still at my door watching me six days later,
and they still haven’t left."
Dissidents such as human rights activist Hu Jia
have been under house arrest in Beijing.
Police abducted Hu Jia from his home on the afternoon of
Jan. 26 on suspicion he may “make trouble".
Hu Jia’s lawyer Mo Shaoping told NTD that he has paid close
attention to the situation of Hu Jia.
Mo Shaoping: “If Hu Jia is not released within 24 hours,
the Public Security must proceed with legal procedures and
documents for detention, arrest, etc.
At that time, as his lawyer, I am obliged to intervene and
to meet him."
At 7pm on Jan. 27, Hu Jia’s wife Zeng Jinyan confirmed on
Twitter that Hu Jia is back at home and is under house arrest.
During the suppression of the New Citizens’ Movement,
Xu Zhiyong has received much support from academia,
such as professors Gan Peizhong and Peng Bing
of Peking University Law School, professor Yao Huanqing of
Renmin University of China Law School,
professor Wang Yong of China University of Political Science
and Law, and associate professor He Haibo
of Tsinghua University School of Law.
They have jointly published an article, “Why we think he’s
innocent – Review of Xu Zhiyong’s case."
Jurist and Co-founder of Open Constitution Initiative
Teng Biao also drafted a public proposal to investigate
violations of constitutional laws on
the rights to assembly and demonstration.
Over 70 scholars and lawyers signed the proposal in one day.
Teng Biao, jurist: “China’s constitution protects the rights to
assembly and demonstration.
But, in practice, laws protecting rights to assembly,
and demonstration have been deprived by various means.
I think the authority of the Constitution and the fundamental
rights of freedom according to international human rights
treaties mustn’t be violated."
While Beijing suppresses the New Citizens’ Movement,
beneficiaries of the Educational Equality promoted by
Xu Zhiyong voluntarily donated more than 10,000 yuan.
Representatives delivered the donation in their visit to
Xu Zhiyong’s wife, Cui Zheng, who just gave birth to
a baby girl in a Beijing hospital on Jan. 13.
Representative: “I hope professor Xu and Wang Gongquan
will regain their freedom soon.
I want the child to be healthy, and I want her to know that
though her father is in jail, he was doing righteous things."
Facing suppression on every side, artist Liu Jinxing says
the already awakened people will fight to the end.
Liu Jinxing: “This is political persecution against Xu Zhiyong
and the New Citizens’ Movement for property declaration.
We will continue the fight.
Those who have a conscience will fight it,
for the most basic conscience."
Jia Pin is actively involved in the Southern Street Movement,
a movement similar to the New Citizens’ Movement.
He recently introduced on Twitter: Southern Street Movement
encourages netizens to voluntarily conduct protests
in the streets with placards calling for democracy and freedom.
Jia Pin and many democracy activists have actively
participated in this movement.
Interview & Edit/TangYin Post-Production/ZhongYuan