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Citizens' Square

Citizens’ Square is a virtual Democracy Wall for individuals from China to share their stories online in personal narratives, open letters, statements, and case descriptions, and through photos, court documents, and videos. While most of the posted items are in Chinese, HRIC provides in English the title and a descriptive summary of each item. On occasion, HRIC also provides English translation of the contents of the item itself.

Launched in spring 2010, Citizens’ Square has served as an uncensored platform for petitioners, rights defenders, lawyers, and other citizens to expose corruption and official malfeasance, publicize cases of abuse ranging from illegal detention to kidnapping and torture, and issue public statements, including calls for official accountability and transparency and appeals for just compensation for forced evictions.

The expansion of this virtual Democracy Wall reflects the powerful desire among Chinese citizens to assert their rights and the growing citizen activism in China. Postings on Citizens’ Square have also helped individuals and groups bring international press attention to their cases.

In Citizens’ Square, journalists, researchers, and the general public can learn more about individual cases.

Items 401 - 450 of 624
  • Zhang Lin and Zhang Anni
In a letter that outlines the human rights abuses Anhui dissident Zhang Lin has suffered, Zhang’s two daughters urge the Chinese authorities to release their father and call on world leaders to pay attention to his and other political prisoners’ cases. Zhang will be tried on December 18 for “...
Liu Jiacai, a Hubei activist, was criminally detained on August 12, 2013 by the Yichang Municipal Public Security Bureau on suspicion of “inciting subversion of state power.” The charge was subsequently changed twice, ending with “picking quarrels and provoking troubles.” In addition, the district...
On November 13, 2013, the Shenzhen Intermediate People's Court upheld the “embezzlement” conviction of Wang Dengchao and sentenced him to 11 years’ imprisonment. Today, a farewell letter written by Wang Dengchao in prison was published on Sina Weibo.
The daughter of Liu Ping, one of the three asset transparency advocates on trial in Jiangxi, said that, during the morning session of the first day of the trial on October 28 at the Yushui District Court in Xinyu, the six defense lawyers demonstrated a strong ability to defend their clients in...
In their statement , the six lawyers explained that the termination of their representation of their clients was based on the defendants’ belief that the court’s behavior so far indicates that it would not be possible for the lawyers to conduct a proper defense.
Observations posted on Lawyer Pang Kun’s blog from the October 14 pre-trial meeting for his client, Li Sihua ( 李思华 ) , and two other asset transparency advocates, Liu Ping ( 刘萍 ) and Wei Zhongping ( 魏忠平 ) , which took place at No.
286 lawyers and other citizens have signed this appeal urging the Ministry of Justice and Bureaus of Justice nationwide to restore practicing privileges to 38 lawyers, and guarantee their rights to practice without obstructions.
Sui Muqing and Lin Qilei, the lawyers of detained activist Guo Feixiong (pen name of Yang Maodong), filed a complaint with the Tianhe Procuratorate (天河区检察院) in Guangzhou, against the Directors of the Guangzhou Municipal Public Security Bureau and the Tianhe District Detention Center. The complaint...
Dozens of lawyers and other citizens signed a letter to the mayor of Jixi to urge him to order the release of Tang Jitian, undertake an investigation, and require those responsible to issue a public apology and compensation for Tang’s unlawful detention.
[唐吉田口述•董前勇会见后整理]2013年10月16日,唐吉田受杨开成委托,为其妻子于金荣被鸡西市610强制非法拘禁在学习班提供法律帮助。
Chinese Belgian Hu Yang says that Shanghai authorities posted an eviction notice on her in-laws’ home, giving them only five days to vacate the property with no consideration for their safety. Hu protests the conduct of the authorities and calls upon the international community to condemn the...
The Shanghai activist describes being prevented from boarding her flight to Geneva at the Guangzhou Baiyun Airport on Sep 14. On the same day, rights defender Cao Shunli (曹顺利)—a friend of hers—was also prevented from boarding a flight to Geneva at the Beijing Airport, and was disappeared. Both were...
[English translation by Human Rights in China] Report submitted to the 17th session of the UN Human Rights Council Working Group on the Universal Periodic Review Country: The People's Republic of China Submitter: Rights Campaign, a non-governmental organization in China Date of Submission: March 1...
The group announces it will provide rights defense support to two lawyers, Sui Muqing and Lin Qilei, by soliciting an additional two rights defense lawyers to help defend Sui and Lin’s legal rights to meet their client, Guo Feixiong.
The author cites Liu Xiaofang, a supporter of Cao, who received the information from Wei Shuying, a participant of the sit-in in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in June and July 2013 requesting citizen participation in the drafting of the National Human Rights Report. According to Liu, Wei...
Cao Shunli, a Beijing rights defender who had been actively calling for public participation in China’s international human rights reporting to the UN, has been missing since September 14. Cao’s younger brother has reported her disappearance at the local police sub-bureau. In this statement the...
The author of this appeal , Yan Bojun, has participated in many citizen actions calling for disclosure of official assets since the second half of 2012. As a result of the authorities’ widening crackdown on advocates of asset transparency and citizen activism, most of his friends have been...
In response to a widening crackdown on advocates of asset transparency and citizen activism and others for “rumor-mongering,” three rights defense lawyers launch a group to provide legal services to individuals detained or arrested simply for exercising their rights.
Wang Gongquan, a venture capitalist, supporter of the New Citizens’ Movement, and vocal critic of the criminal detention of Xu Zhiyong, was criminally detained on suspicion of “disrupting order in a public place.”
Peking University professor Xia Yeliang issues an urgent statement to refute an assertion by Hu Xijin, the editor-in-chief of the Global Times writing under the penname Shan Renping. In a September 9, 2013 article titled “One needs to pass the internal review before becoming a Peking University...
A family member writes of a series of injustices that the Li Wenhai family, in Beijing, has suffered: Li Wenhai himself was forcibly incarcerated in a psychiatric hospital for three-and-a-half years. After his release, his wife Li Guian, was beaten and seriously wounded by a thug in the community...
Gansu dissident Li Dawei (李大伟) was released last year after serving ten years in prison on the charge of subversion of state power. Li has been petitioning the government to overturn his conviction. In this piece , he describes he was recently granted a meeting with a judge in the Gansu Provincial...
In a letter that the sender knew will not reach the recipient, defense lawyer Liu Weiguo told his client Xu Zhiyong, founder of the New Citizens’ Movement, that on the day he tried to visit Xu in detention, not only was his request denied but he himself was also taken away. He wrote that the...
This article , written by an “ordinary citizen,” expresses praise and respect for Xu Zhiyong. The author says Xu’s arrest was foolish because it has made many more people know about Xu and the New Citizens’ Movement.
In her letter , Zhang Qing protests the latest detention of Guo Feixiong and details the persecution her husband has suffered since 2003, the year he began rights defense activities. She calls for his immediate and unconditional release without criminal charge. Zhang says Guo’s release will help...
The notice says Guo Feixiong (real name Yang Maodong) was criminally detained on August 8, 2013 on suspicion of “gathering a crowd to disrupt order in a public place,” according to Article 80 of the PRC’s Criminal Procedure Law. He has been detained in the Tianhe District Detention Center in...
This article says that one can wait for the collapse of the Communist regime, since its resources are already exhausted, but one should not wait for civil society in China to come—one must begin building it now. Li says that the criminal detention of Xu Zhiyong and some 40 other citizens marks a...
This article says that one can wait for the collapse of the Communist regime, since its resources are already exhausted, but one should not wait for civil society in China to come—one must begin building it now. Li says that the criminal detention of Xu Zhiyong and some 40 other citizens marks a...
In this open letter , a representative of the evictees from the Dongbakuai neighborhood in Shanghai makes the following requests to the Hines Interests Limited Partnership, which recently won a bid to develop the controversial site: urge the Shanghai government to provide proper housing to resettle...
Sun Lin, activist and freelance journalist, interviews four elderly women, average age 72.5 years old, who have been staging a sit-in in front of the Foreign Affairs Ministry for more than 40 days to call for open government information and citizen participation in drafting China’s human rights...
Li Huaping provides an update to a recently launched campaign to channel relief, through a watch group, to detained citizens, including money to be used for improving detainees’ food in detention centers and to assist family members to pay for detainees’ legal defense.
This open letter , circulated by AIBO AIDS Relief Law Network, thanks the Guangdong government for abolishing provisions in the Standards for Physical Examinations of Applicants for Teacher Credentials in Guangdong Province [广东省教师资格申请人员体格检查标准], which prevented people living with HIV/AIDs from...
Liu Weiguo, lawyer of detained rights activist Xu Zhiyong, submitted eight applications for open government information, seven to the Daxing branch of the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau, and one to the Daxing Finance Bureau of Beijing. The information requested includes: the legal basis...
Luo Shengchun, wife of detained rights defense lawyer Ding Jiaxi ( 丁家喜 ), said in an open letter to the Beijing Public Security Bureau and the Beijing Procuratorate that her husband was criminally detained because he advocated for public disclosure of officials’ assets. Although the authorities...
As participants of the New Citizens’ Movement, the co-authors of this statement protest the authorities’ house arrest and detention of Xu Zhiyong ( 许志永) , stating that it undermines the legal system and is a violation of his rights. The authors say they will stand together with Xu and continue...
A video interview of a petitioner in front of the Beijing No. 3 Detention Center, hoping to be able to visit Xu Zhiyong (许志永) , the rights advocate who has been criminally detained since July 16 on suspicion of “gathering a crowd to disrupt order in a public place.” The petitioner said Xu has been...
A video interview of a petitioner in front of the Beijing No. 3 Detention Center, hoping to be able to visit Xu Zhiyong(许志永) , the rights advocate who has been criminally detained since July 16 on suspicion of “gathering a crowd to disrupt order in a public place.” The petitioner talked about the...
After two years, rights defender Liu Dejun ( 刘德军) recently publicized his personal account about his 40-day ordeal in April-August 2011 of being secretly locked up and interrogated, then criminally detained, and finally released on bail after the Jasmine Rallies. He describes being covered with a...
This account describes the forced eviction of Zhou Xiaowei and his elderly mother from their Nantong home in the early morning of July 16, 2013. They now have nowhere to live after their home was forcibly demolished.
An administrative complaint submitted by anti-nuclear test activist Yuan Bing (袁兵) to Guangzhou's Nansha District Court against officers at the Nansha District Public Security Bureau. Yuan alleges that the police officers wrongly administratively detained him after he staged a peaceful protest...
This document was submitted by Sui Muqing to Haizhu District People’s Court of Guangzhou on behalf of his clients, two street vendors, who are suing local government officials and police in Haizhu, Guangzhou Province for abuse of powers, use of violence, and arbitrary detention and interrogation...
This account explains the proceedings and irregularities of a court hearing of a case involving three farmers being charged with "assembling a crowd to disrupt traffic" and "assembling a crowd to assault State organs."
On the afternoon of June 19, Lawyer Sui and three other lawyers went to the Chibi Detention Center in Xianning City, Hubei Province, to visit five activists detained in May. The activists were first placed under administrative detention, and then criminal detention, after unfolding a banner which...
Anhui activist Yao Cheng was detained for 10 days following a trip to Putian, Fujian Province, with Zhang Lin and his daughter, Zhan Anni, in June this year. In this statement , Yao said that he has had no knowledge of the whereabouts of the Zhangs since he parted with them on June 15.
Shi Zongwei, the former Deputy Director of the Department of Labor Service at Zhengzhou Yellow River Engineering Bureau —who was removed from his position because of his participation in social gatherings and posting his opinions online—released three more items relevant to his dismissal.
A statement by Shi Zongwei (史宗伟), former Deputy Director of the Department of Labor Service at Zhengzhou Yellow River Engineering Bureau, who was removed from his position by the Bureau’s Party leadership because he participated in social gatherings, posted his opinions online, and joined sit-ins...
Zhao Changqing —one of the "ten gentlemen of Beijing calling for disclosure of officials’ assets”—is going to prison for the fourth time. The first time was in 1989, when he was arrested because of his activities in Democracy Movement. He was imprisoned again in 1998 and 2002 because he ran for...
In this letter from Ding Zilin and her husband Jiang Peikun, both of the Tiananmen Mothers group, they state that authorities have cut off their Internet connection, landline, and mobile service.
Nine Christians, all former prisoners of conscience, gathered together in Beijing on May 31. In his sermon , Xu Yonghai, the head of the Divine Love Group of the Beijing Christian House Church, prayed for all who were killed, injured, and jailed because of the June Fourth crackdown on the 1989...

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