August 9, 2016 8:03:26 am
The US has condemned the recent conviction of prominent lawyers and human rights activists on charge of “subversion of state power” by a Chinese court and called for their immediate release.
“Last week, a Chinese court convicted prominent human rights attorney Zhou Shifeng, director of the Fengrui law firm and activists Hu Shigen, Zhai Yanmin and Gou Hongguo of the apparently politically motivated charge of ‘subversion of state power’,” State Department spokesperson Elizabeth Trudeau said Monday.
Since 2011, Zhou has verbally attacked the socialist system and the “one country, two systems” policy that applies to Hong Kong and Macao, and incited confrontation, the statement said.
More than a dozen other attorneys and activists were detained on and around July 9, 2015. They remain in pretrial detention without access to their families or to legal counsel of their own choosing, she claimed.
“This campaign undermines China’s development of a judicial system that respects the rule of law. “We urge Chinese authorities to release the lawyers and rights defenders who are imprisoned or are in detention, including those already sentenced,” Trudeau said. “We call for an immediate end to the cases brought against them and to restrictions on their freedom of movement and professional activities,” she added.
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