About the Individual:
Overview: Relocated Eight Times for Olympics Redevelopment; Imprisoned on Trumped-Up Charges
Shuang Shuying (双淑英) is a 76-year old evictions petitioner, religious rights activist, and outspoken opponent of the Reeducation-Through-Labor (RTL) system. She saw her Beijing home demolished in 2002 to make way for Olympics redevelopment. After the demolition, her family had to relocate eight times. She has been imprisoned since February 2007 on trumped-up charges after appealing for her son's release. When she began her prison term, Shuang was suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes, and a heart condition. The authorities have denied her family's request for medical parole, and her health continues to deteriorate.
Shuang Shuying and her family are longtime rights activists. She and her husband, Hua Zaichen (华再臣), 88, have participated in demonstrations against the RTL system, and Shuang's son Hua Huiqi (华惠棋), a "house church" pastor, is a vocal religious rights activist.
On January 26, 2007, Shuang and her son Hua Huiqi were beaten and detained by the police when they tried to petition the National People's Congress for compensation for their destroyed home. Shuang was released the same day, but her son remained in detention for "obstructing official business." On February 9, 2007, when Shuang and her husband went to the Chongwen district government office to protest their son's detention, a police car drove toward Shuang. Fearing the car would hit her, Shuang hit it with her cane.
In late February 2007, Shuang was tried and convicted for "intentional damage of public and private property" and sentenced to two years in prison. Shuang's family was permitted few visits to her. The authorities have used visits to Shuang as a bargaining chip with her family: in July 2007, when Shuang's son was released from detention, an officer from the Public Security Bureau told him that if he agreed to provide information on other Christian house church practitioners and petitioners, a visit with his mother could be arranged, and that if he did not cooperate, he would not see his mother again.
The United States, European Union and United Kingdom have called for Shuang's immediate release from prison.
Shuang Shuying and her family have suffered a range of government abuses for more than half a century. In 1950, Shuang's father was executed before her eyes after being labeled a "counterrevolutionary." In 1956, Shuang's husband, Hua Zaichen, was also branded a "counterrevolutionary" and condemned to more than twenty years of Reeducation-Through-Labor. During that time, Shuang was urged to divorce her husband and, when she refused, was harassed by the authorities and her work unit. Her children were bullied by their teachers and schoolmates. Since his release, Hua Zaichen and Shuang have been committed to speaking out against the RTL system and, in 2001, staged a protest in Tiananmen Square.
Shuang's son, Hua Huiqi, converted to Christianity in 1990 and has since been a leading figure in Beijing's Christian house church movement. Shuang herself converted soon afterwards. Over the past few years, the whole family has been put under tight surveillance and subjected to repeated harassment and abuse for its protest activities.
On February 9, 2007, after hitting the police car in self defense at the Chongwen District Bureau of Letters and Visits, Shuang was immediately dragged into the Bureau's reception room by police officers; she was formally arrested that same day for intentional damage to property and was put on trial on February 26, 2007. Shuang was sentenced to two years in prison and her appeal was denied in April that year.
Shuang's family continues to be tormented during her imprisonment, as Shuang's husband told Human Rights in China in his July 28, 2008 letter.
Shuang's Court and Other Documents
HRIC Advocacy and Media Work on Shuang Shuying
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Updated News Articles
The Human Rights in China (HRIC) Daily News Brief is a daily compilation of selected human rights-related news covered in local and regional Chinese and English press compiled by HRIC's research office. Visit the Daily News Brief for recent news articles on Shuang Shuying.
 "China: Partial List of Political Prisoners Detained or Imprisoned as of June 26, 2008 (734 cases)," Congressional-Executive Commission on China, June 26, 2008, http://www.cecc.gov/pages/victims/20080626_CECC%20PPD_DET_734%20rec.pdf.
 U.S. Department of State, 2007 Report on International Religious Freedom (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of State, 2007), http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2007/.
 "Smith in China on Major Human Rights Appeal in Run-up to Olympics," Chris Smith, July 1, 2008, http://chrissmith.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=96117.
 See United Kingdom, Hansard Parliamentary Debates, session 2006-07 (2007), col. 541W, http://www.parliament.the-stationery-office.co.uk/pa/cm200607/cmhansrd/cm071009/
 "The whole text of Ms. Wei Jumei's letter: Please Pray for my Mother-in-Law," China Aid, August 17, 2008, http://chinaaid.org/2007/08/17/the-whole-text-of-ms-wei-jumei%e2%80%99s-letter-please-
 "Breaking News-Hua Huiqi under house arrest and his call to Pray for the Police of the Chinese Communist Party," China Aid, October 03, 2007, http://chinaaid.org/2007/10/03/breaking-news-hua-huiqi-
 Fang Yuan [方媛], "78-Year-old Petitioner Sentenced to 2 Years' Imprisonment" [北京78岁上访老人双淑英被判刑两年], Radio Free Asia [自由亚洲电台], February 26, 2007, http://www.rfa.org/mandarin/yataibaodao
 Hua uses the Chinese calculation for age in his letter.
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