Thursday, May 3, 2012

Update on Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng

We reported last week on the escape from house arrest of Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng. It seems that with the assistance of fellow dissident He "Pearl" Peirong Chen found his way to the American Embassy. We understand that Chen left the Embassy in the company of US Embassy personnel for medical treatment and there is some doubt about his current status and that of his family. We also understand that there will be an emergency Congressional hearing into the entire affair.
Women’s Rights Without Frontiers report that controversy surrounds the latest news of Chen’s decision to leave the safety of the U.S. embassy in Beijing after escaping there from house arrest on April 22. The U.S. government purports that it was necessary for him to seek medical treatment and that the Chinese government promised Chen and his family safe conduct. Human rights activists have doubts about his wellbeing and China's intent, stating that his condition was not critical, and that the U.S. government should have welcomed the Chen's family into the safety of the compound until a more satisfactory deal could be made.

Meanwhile, activists are unable to contact He "Pearl" Peirong, a fellow dissident who assisted Chen in reaching the safety of the U.S. embassy in Beijing. They worry that she has now been detained because of her assistance to Chen.

Women’s Rights Without Frontiers President, Women's Rights Without Frontiers and Bob Fu President, China Aid have called a press conference to be held  later today at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C to give an update and a Q&A session on the current status of Chen, his family and his colleagues.
Bob Fu, President of China Aid and Tiananmen Square student leader, along with Reggie Littlejohn of Women's Rights Without Frontiers have long established relationships with Chen and He. Fu has marked this as a watershed moment for United States credibility in the defense of freedom and rule of law.

Fu and Littlejohn are in Washington to testify before an emergency hearing of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China to discuss the recent developments in the Cheng Guangcheng case.