Human Rights in China (HRIC) would like to respond to false allegations attributed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in an Associated Press (AP) story published on July 4.
The AP story, entitled “U.S. Protests American Detained in China,” quoted a statement by the PRC Ministry of Foreign Affairs as alleging that HRIC Executive Director Sharon Hom concealed her true identity when applying for a visa to attend the EU-China Human Rights dialogue seminar in Beijing in late June. The report also quoted a Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ statement as claiming that Sharon Hom “confessed to hiding her true identity and apologized” to her EU sponsors after Beijing State Security police harassed her at the end of her trip.
AP failed to contact HRIC regarding these allegations prior to publication, and no one at HRIC has seen the statement that the PRC Ministry of Foreign Affairs reportedly faxed to AP. However, HRIC would like to take the opportunity to categorically state the following:
1. Sharon Hom’s visa application and her U.S. Passport both clearly identify her under both her Chinese and English names.
2. The official list of participants clearly identified Sharon Hom and her relevant institutional affiliations.
3. The allegations of a “confession” and an “apology” to EU sponsors are factually groundless.
For further details and comments, please contact Stacy Mosher at HRIC at (212) 239-4495 or firstname.lastname@example.org.