Writer and Independent Chinese Pen Officer Zhao Shiying Released
International PEN welcomes the release of Zhao Shiying, dissident writer, activist and Secretary General of the Independent Chinese PEN Center (ICPC), after being detained for two weeks. There were fears that Zhao Shiying was arrested for supporting Liu Xiaobo, former ICPC president who was sentenced to 11 years in prison on December 25, 2009. PEN demands the immediate and unconditional release of Liu Xiaobo and all those detained in violation of Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which China is a signatory.
According to PEN’s information, Zhao Shiying, pen name Zhao Dagong, was released on January 25, 2010. Zhao had been arrested by police officers at his home in Shenzhen, southern China, on January 11, 2009, and held without charge. Shi Xiaoli, Zhao’s wife, confirmed to the Associated Press that Zhao had been freed and that he is resting at home. She declined to provide further details.
Zhao Shiying was interrogated several times since December 2008 about his involvement with Liu Xiaobo, and his statements were included in the court verdict against Liu. On December 27, 2009, Zhao Shiyang published an online essay entitled "Liu Xiaobo's Banner ! – Birthday Wishes to Liu Xiaobo" in which he reaffirmed his willingness to share responsibility with Liu for the publication of Charter 08. There are fears that Zhao was targeted as part of a crackdown on signatories of Charter 08 and on the Independent Chinese PEN Center.
Write A Letter
- Welcoming the release of leading dissident writer and activist Zhao Shiying;
- Calling for the immediate and unconditional release of all those detained in violation of Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which China is a signatory.
Send Your Letter To
His Excellency Hu Jintao
President of the People’s Republic of China
Mr. Meng Jianzhu
Minister of the Public Security
East Chang'an Avenue 14
Please note that there are no fax numbers for the Chinese authorities. PEN recommends that you copy your appeal to the Chinese embassy in your country asking them to forward it and welcoming any comments.
Please contact PEN if sending appeals after March 15, 2010: ftw [at] pen.org