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Three years have passed since the 709 Crackdown, but the Chinese authorities’ repression of human rights lawyers in China continues. The 709 Crackdown not only marked the beginning of a downturn of China’s political environment, but also has far-reaching negative implications for China’s judicial...
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Five years ago, in July 2015, the Chinese authorities rounded up some 300 lawyers, legal advocates, and other rights activists in a campaign aimed at strangling rights defense work in China, including within the legal system. In what has come to be known as the 709 Crackdown, many were charged with...

China’s more than 250,000 lawyers do not yet benefit from many of the fundamental protections outlined in the UN Basic Principles for Lawyers. Moreover, the growing body of rights defense lawyers and their increasingly sophisticated and diverse legal activism has triggered heightened interference from authorities, both legal and extralegal.

Lawyer Wang Quanzhang was disappeared in July 2015, in the beginning stage of the 709 crackdown in which more than 300 lawyers and activists were affected—disappeared, detained, or questioned. Subsequently, all of the detainees were either prosecuted and sentenced or released—except lawyer Wang...
Under intense international anticipation of the release today from prison of prominent rights lawyer Jiang Tianyong ( 江天勇) , who was convicted of the trumped up charge of “inciting subversion of state power,” the Chinese authorities have instead disappeared him. His supporters outside the Henan...
Wang Quanzhang, a rights lawyer, finally met with a lawyer after having been disappeared for more than three years. The lawyer, Liu Weiguo, reported that that Wang told him that he has suffered “no hard violence.” In the article below, Wang’s wife Li Wenzu reminds us what “no hard violence” means...
Wang Quanxiu, elder sister of lawyer Wang Quanzhang, explains in the below account that Wang has been imprisoned for a full 11 months, on suspicion of “subversion of state power,” and that their mother spent her 70th birthday silently suffering and extremely worried about her son. Today, Wang...

As the crackdown on lawyers and defenders that began in July 2015 continues with prolonged incommunicado detention of individuals without trial, family members of those still detained, and of those released after suffering abuses in custody, have not stopped speaking out to demand justice. In these narratives, what we are witnessing is a rising activism among a group determined to hold the authorities accountable for unlawfully suppressing citizens who are exercising rights protected by Chinese and international law. (All text translated by Human Rights in China.)

In his article, lawyer Chen Jiangang discusses what he terms as the “Four Breakthroughs” that President Xi Jinping has “achieved” during his administration: 1. Breaking with the principle of abiding by international treaty obligation, (referring to the the 1984 Joint Declaration that the Chinese...
You Minglei is the husband of Zhao Wei. The content of this message is from Weiquan Wang. Statement from You Minglei: I received news tonight that Mr. Ren Quanniu, the lawyer I appointed to represent Zhao Wei, was criminally detained on July 8 by public security authorities in Zhengzhou for “...

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