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China: Breaking the law: Crackdown on human rights lawyers and legal activists in China

, Index number: ASA 17/042/2009

Human rights lawyers in China have been harassed, forcibly disappeared, placed under surveillance and faced criminal charges for protecting the rights of others. Apart from regulatory curbs on “mass cases” and the annual assessment as a tool of controlling lawyers' work, the Chinese authorities impose political pressure on law firms involved in human rights cases by imposing arbitrary administrative sanctions. In this report Amnesty International urges the Chinese government to cease harassment of human rights lawyers and ensure that they are able to freely choose their clients and represent them in legal proceedings.

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