Human Rights in China has learned that, on August 29, the Beijing Municipal Reeducation-Through-Labor Decision Committee rescinded its decision to sentence two elderly women to a year of Reeducation-Through-Labor (RTL) – less than two weeks after the decision was delivered. Wu Dianyuan (吴殿元), 79, and Wang Xiuying (王秀英), 77, were sentenced after applying for permits to demonstrate in the officially designated “protest zones” during the Beijing Olympics.
“Human Rights in China welcomes this action but strongly believes that the original RTL decision was baseless,” said Sharon Hom, executive director of Human Rights in China. “In the glare of international attention, it seems that even the government itself has acknowledged that this punishment was harsh and inappropriate,” she said.
China’s RTL system has long been widely criticized, not only because it violates international standards of human rights, but also because it is in direct conflict with the Chinese government’s self-professed “rule by law.”
Human Rights in China urges the Chinese government to immediately take practical measures to abolish the RTL system, which tramples on human rights.
For additional information on Wu Dianyuan and Wang Xiuying, see: