Wang Yu, lawyer for Ilham Tohti, and Li Heping, lawyer for Chen Guangcheng, were detained by Chinese authorities in July 2015. CCS, at that time, wrote a letter requesting their release. They have now been formally arrested with charges that could result in life sentences.
January 22, 2016
President Xi Jinping
The State Council General’s Office
2 Fuyoujie, Xichengqu
People’s Republic of China
The Committee of Concerned Scientists is an independent organization of scientists, physicians, engineers and scholars devoted to the protection and advancement of human rights and scientific freedom for colleagues all over the world.
We write today to express our profound concerns for human rights attorneys Wang Yu and Li Heping. Both have defended scholars and academics on whose behalf our Committee has advocated in the past.
Wang Yu was formally arrested on January 13, together with her husband, and accused of “subversion of state power”, the charge that is inconsistent with her work as an attorney.
The whereabouts of Li Heping remain unknown to us, he disappeared over half a year ago, on July 10th. His family has been notified that he has formally been arrested.
We expect the Chinese government, as a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to protect the rights of these human rights lawyers and to guarantee that they are not detained without a legitimate legal reason.
On September 8, 2015, we wrote to you with a request to release Wang Yu and Li Heping. While still in detention, they should be given adequate medical treatment and they should be allowed effective legal representation.
Sincerely,Joel L. Lebowitz, Paul H. Plotz, Walter Reich,
Eugene M. Chudnovsky, Alexander Greer
Co-Chairs, Committee of Concerned Scientists
- China Arrests Two Human Rights Lawyers on Unspecified Charges (concernedscientists.org)
- Chinese rights advocates Wang Yu, Bao Longjun formally arrested on subversion charges (scmp.com)
- China Formally Arrests Top Rights Lawyers on Subversion Charges (Radio Free Asia)
- China charges prominent rights lawyer Wang Yu and husband (bbc.com)