Wang is one of 300 lawyers arrested during the ‘709 crackdown’ in July 2015. He has been held incommunicado and in solitary confinement, subjected to torture.
Tianjin (AsiaNews) – Human rights lawyer Wang Quanzhang has been charged with "inciting subversion of state power" and is set to go before a court in Tianjin. The same court has already convicted other lawyers sentencing them to three to seven years in jail.
Wang is part of a group of lawyers and activists arrested during a crackdown against human rights defenders referred to as 709 because it began on 9 July (2015). On that day, about 300 rights lawyers and activists were detained, interrogated or threatened.
Wang was one the first to be arrested and has been held incommunicado in secret locations.
At least half of them are Christian (Protestant and Catholic) lawyers who use Chinese law to protect their communities and clergymen from abuse by local authorities.
Several of them have defended Christian communities during the campaign of cross destruction countryside in Zhejiang.
Last month, activists reported that Wang and his Christian colleague, Li Heping, were subjected to torture, including electric shocks and corporal punishment.
Despite police threats, the wives of the arrested lawyers have continued to call on the international community to intervene.
He is the only prisoner whose fate remains unknown. The prison in Tianjin won’t let his wife and lawyers see him. In the past, Wang defended Falun Gong members and farmers displaced from their land. Torture and phoney confessions are routine.
Public security officials, the municipal procuratorate, Changsha detention centre, and all those involved in Xie Yang’s case prevented his lawyers from seeing him, covered up the torture used to obtain his confession, and punished an innocent man.
Among the nearly 300 detained lawyers 50% are Catholic or Protestant Christians. Beatings, electric shocks, threats, deprived of liquids to coerce them into admitting they "conspired against state security". The lawyers’ wives threatened.
Chen Jiangang, a lawyer representing human rights lawyers jailed by the Chinese authorities, expressed his sadness and attachment to life. In a written statement, he anticipates possible torture and false confessions to which prisoners are subjected.
A EU spokesperson issues a statement on the matter. The release of Li and Xie Yanyi Chunfu is "a positive step", but the EU wants an explanation for the cases involving Li Heping, Wang Quangzhang and Xie Yang as well as the release of still detained lawyers and activists.