Remembering June 4th, 1989

六月某時 秀場寡頭樂隊 Sometimes in June by Show Oligarch

六月的一天           One day in June
全是年輕的臉        all young faces
他們在春風裏        in the spring breeze
忘記了時間            forgetting time
六月的一天            One day in June
全是年輕的臉        all young faces
他們在陽光下         under the sunshine
想像著世界             imagining a world
一場大風                 A strong wind
把你吹散                 blew you away
一場大雨                 a heavy rain
把雲沖淡                 washed the cloud light
六月的一天             One day in June
全是年輕的臉         all young faces
他們在春風裏         in the spring breeze
忘記了世界             forgetting the world
六月的一天             One day in June
全是年輕的臉         all young faces
他們在陽光下         under the sunshine
想像著時間             imagining time
一場大風                 A strong wind
把我吹遠                 blew me afar
一場大雨                 a heavy rain
把足跡沖淡             carried the footprints away

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Searching for Elder Sister Kou Yanding

Kou Yanding was taken away by police in Beijing on October 10th for “picking quarrels and provoking disturbances.” Kou Yanding is a bestselling author on such incendiary subjects as trying on parliamentary procedures in Chinese villages and endurance walking. Until today, nobody knows her whereabouts, and her family only knows that she was detained and her home was searched by the police and shut again with a police lock.

Kou_Yan_DingHer sister wrote (in Chinese) on 10 December 2014, the International Human Rights Day.

Our 85 years old father longs for your returning home. Second elder sister was running between Haidian Police, Detention House, and the City Letter and Visits Office. Although we knew the confirmation that you got detained by the police, but nobody knew why and where you were detained. Everytime, we went to search for you based on what was told by the police, but failed in vain.

The following is my translation of an article written by Zhai Minglei (sina weibo翟明磊在雾里) on 14 October 2014.

At this moment, in Shanghai, I am writing a memoir. In this country, very often some people got disappeared without trace for being the voice of conscience. This is more dreadful than death. In two days, two of my good friends, Guo Yushan 郭玉闪and Kou Yanding寇延丁, were detained. When this happens with my own friends, it is an unbearable anger and helplessness. Perhaps there will be a new style of writing in China, a style of memoir about the disappearance of good friends of conscience. I think we can name it “Style of Sorrowful Memoir”. In such a dark age, words do not have power; however they can still warm our freezing hearts. There are not many people who know Kou Yanding, so I will write about her first.

我所认识的寇延丁What I Know about Kou Yanding

Our getting to know each other for the first time was interesting. One day, I received a letter, because I worked a bit for public interest, the sender wanted to meet me and discuss my experience. The signature of the letter showed “Tarzan Kou Yanding”. The writing was brief and straight, I thought the writer must be a foreigner and a man, and got this name after the movie, until I picked up the phone. I could not help laughing in my heart.

As agreed, I went to Jinyan’s Office. I went downstairs of the office building a bit earlier. When I passed a bench nearby a grass field, a lady attracted my attention, not because of her looking, but the peacefulness surrounding her. She was sitting there quietly and the whole world seemed quiet because of her. From my intuiting, I knew that must be her, and I smiled and went upstairs. Continue reading

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Oxford Alumnus Appeal for Liu Jianshu

Oxford Alumnus Appeal Liu Jianshu

Like many Chinese young people, Liu Jianshu 柳建树 studied abroad and chose to come back to China. Unlike most young Chinese graduates from abroad, he did not choose a place to make a lot of money with his background of overseas study in Oxford; instead, he made himself an NGO worker and dedicated to the development of civil society in China. Continue reading

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October 1st, the National Day, and Hong Kong

Today is October 1st, 2014, it is the 65th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. In Beijing, tens of thousands people went to Tiananmen Square in the early morning to watch the flag-raising ceremony. It is a national holiday and a day of celebration. In China this day is called 国庆日 (national day), literally, it is “nation(al) celebrate (celebration) day”. On this special day, people like to get together with families and eat delicious food, visit parks, go for tourist travels, or stay at home and watch TV. In many cities, national day firework shows are organized in the evening for residents to enjoy. But today, in Hong Kong, instead of beautiful fireworks and more tourists pouring in for shopping and visiting, tens of thousands of Hong Kong people are “Occupy(ing) Central” and launching an “Umbrella Revolution”, protesting against the new election policy decided by Beijing.

What is “OCCUPY Central”? Continue reading

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Ilham Tohti, “Forced Separatism”?

AFTER a two-day trial last week, Ilham Tohti, a scholar who has spoken critically of China’s policies toward people of his Uighur ethnicity, was sentenced on September 23rd to life in prison for separatism. Many Western powers ‘outraged’ after China convicts him. Why does the Chinese authority punish him with such a heavy sentence? 长平, Chang Ping, a commentator and critic wrote an article that explains this well. The following is my translation of Chang Ping’s article (in Chinese).

When the Independence Referendum in Scotland is just finished, while democratic states respect civil rights, and solve area conflicts in a peaceful and rational way and gain praise from the people, Uyghur Scholar, the former Minsu University of China professor Ilham Tohti, is sentenced to life sentence for separatism and with confiscation of his total personal assets. At this moment, the world politics is divided clearly into two parts: the light and the dark. Continue reading

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The Attorney Pu Zhiqiang (part 1)

As the 25th anniversary of Tian’anmen Democracy Movement approaches, a small group of people, consisted of Tiananmen mothers, scholars, dissidents, writers, held a seminar in Beijing on May 3rd to remember the event, discuss its impact and consequences, and call for truth finding and resolution of remaining issues. Less than two days after the seminar, multiple disappearances have been reported.
Among them, lawyer Pu Zhiqiang 浦志强 was detained under the crime of “disrupting social order”. puzhiqiangnanfangrenwu
The following is my translation of a 2012 article published by South Metropolis Weekly (in Chinese) about Lawyer Pu Zhiqiang.

Haer Lawyer Pu Zhiqiang written by Jia Lingjiang, Tang Ailin

Pu Zhiqiang is 188cm tall and weighs 110kg. He speaks in loud voice and looks tough and strong. He makes many feel a bit under pressured standing together with him.

His weibo account profile is a portrait taken by the ESQUIRE magazine: square head, black suits, white shirt, handsome, healthy and strong, but with deep dimples making him a bit sweet.

Appearing on the ESQUIRE, Pu is so proud that he boasts that he will work hard towards the showbiz, and to start by “taking some small roles”.

He did appear in a 2009 documentary (Laoma tihua by Ai Weiwei, Pu appears at 17 minutes onward) and got quite many fans. However, he insists that he was already popular before the documentary. He got famous for defending for the media and individuals and their freedom of expression in defamation cases.
He calls himself “Haer”, “Hamou”, which means straightforward, pumpkin head, and says that he “knows politics, has techniques, but very bad in law”. This is for sure self-mockery. Born in 1965, Pu Zhiqiang graduated from Nankai University and the Chinese University of Political Science and Law, and he started to practice law in 1997. Continue reading

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The Attorneys

Ding Jiaxi 丁家喜 is a Chinese lawyer, he is a member of the New Citizens Movement in China. He called for the disclosure of government officials assets by giving public speech and spreading banners Beijing and he was then charged with the crime of “disrupting public order”.

Photo of lawyer Ding Jiaxi

Photo of lawyer
Ding Jiaxi

On April 6, the trial day of Ding Jiaxi in Beijing, Wang Quanping 王全平, a Guangdong lawyer drove to Beijijng to support the Lawyer Ding Jiaxi. Wang painted some sarcastic words on his car: Ridiculous if guilty to ask government officials to disclose assets? We welcome people to disclose their assets, no need for public servants. Please, public servants, do not disclose your assets.

People, please disclose your assets. Public servants, please not disclose.

People, please disclose your assets.
Public servants, please not disclose.

Around 4pm on 8 April, Lawyer Wang arrived the Beijing Haidian District Court and planned to listen to the trial, but he was taken away by some unidentified people, and then was cut off contact with his family and friends. Until the afternoon of 10 April, the outside world was informed that lawyer Wang Quanping was detained under the crime of “causing disturbance”. So in China, no matter to ask government officials to disclose assets or not to disclose assets, both can constitute “crimes”.

The detention of lawyer Wang Quanping caused anger and support among Chinese laywers. Many lawerys started their campains “Do you want to defend for the dignity of Constitution and law? Do you want to defend for lawyer Wang Quanping?” There have been already over one hundred lawyers who participated in defending for Wang Quanping. (In Chinese) Continue reading

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