China: Government’s claims on Gui Minhai “ludicrous”
Responding to the Chinese authorities’ admission on Tuesday that Gui Minhai, a bookseller with Swedish nationality, is again being detained and faces criminal charges, William Nee, China Researcher at Amnesty International commented:
“This is a brazen and outrageous move by the Chinese authorities. They have yet to provide adequate explanation as to why they took Gui Minhai away while he was traveling with Swedish diplomats. Gui Minhai must be released. He and his family have suffered enough, their nightmare should be over not recurring.
“It is ludicrous for the Chinese government to lecture others about respect, when they have shown utter contempt for fair trials and other human rights.
“It is crucial that while Gui Minhai remains in detention he receives adequate health care as necessary or requested, is granted consular access, and can meet lawyers of his own choosing. The Chinese government cannot simply sidestep international law because they arbitrarily deem a case to be ‘serious’.”
Gui Minhai was taken away on Saturday 20 January by approximately 10 plainclothes officers while traveling by train to Beijing in the company of two Swedish diplomats. He was going to Beijing to seek a diagnosis for what is feared to be Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Gui Minhai, is a Hong Kong bookseller with Swedish nationality, who went missing in Thailand in 2015, and later appeared in Chinese custody. He was held for more than two years before the authorities claimed to have released him in October 2017. Despite his apparent release, Gui Minhai appears to have been under tight police surveillance, with his freedom of movement curtailed.
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