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UA 414/90 - China: health concern: Bao Zunxin

, Index number: ASA 17/062/1990

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: ASA 17/62/90
Distr: UA/SC
UA 414/90 Health Concern 12 October 1990
Bao Zunxin, an intellectual imprisoned without charge in Beijing since July
1989, is reported to have attempted to commit suicide twice in prison, according
to information which reached Amnesty International on 11 October. He was
arrested during the crackdown on pro-democracy protesters which started in
June last year, and Amnesty International has adopted him as a prisoner of
conscience. He is reported to suffer from high blood pressure and a heart
disease for which he must take medicines every day. The reasons for his reported
attempts to commit suicide are not known.
It was reported in July that Bao Zunxin's wife had had no news of him
since 24 January 1990. She had been previously allowed to correspond with
him and was granted permission to see him for the first time on 24 January
on the occasion of the Chinese New Year. However, all communications stopped
after that date and she received no further news of him.
Bao Zunxin is detained at Qincheng, a maximum security prison for political
prisoners located north of Beijing, but little is known of the conditions in
which he is held. It is known, however, that many intellectuals and student
leaders held there have been put under duress - and some tortured - to force
them to "confess" during interrogation.
Before his arrest, Bao Zunxin was a researcher at the Institute of Chinese
History of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), as well as a member
of the Chinese Communist Party, magazine editor and the author of many books.
Shortly after his arrest, all his books were banned, he was fired from his
post at the CASS and expelled from the Party.
Since June 1989, he has been mentioned on several occasions by the Chinese
official media as one of the intellectuals whom the authorities regard as being
responsible for encouraging the 1989 students' unrest and
"counter-revolutionary turmoil". He took an active part in the pro-democracy
movement, signing public appeals and petitions issued by a group of
intellectuals. He had previously joined in an appeal for the release of
political prisoners in China, which was addressed to the authorities by 42
leading Chinese academics in February 1989.
Amnesty International is concerned that Bao Zunxin has been arbitrarily
imprisoned without charge or trial for over a year for peacefully expressing
his views and that his life may be in danger due to the conditions of his
imprisonment. It is calling on the Chinese authorities to investigate his
situation without delay, to provide him with all necessary medical treatment,
and to release him unconditionally.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail letters:
- expressing concern at reports that Bao Zunxin has attempted to commit suicide
in prison, possibly due to his conditions of detention, and that he suffers
from a heart complaint and high blood pressure for which he needs regular
- expressing concern that Bao Zunxin has been arbitrarily detained for well
over a year without charge or trial for peacefully expressing his views;
- urging the authorities to investigate his situation without delay, and to
provide him with all necessary medical treatment;
- urging that he be released unconditionally.
LI Peng Zongli
People's Republic of China
Telexes: 210070 FMPRC CN
22478 MFERT CN
(Please forward to Prime Minister LI Peng)
WANG Fang Buzhang
Gonganbu, Dong Chang'an Jie
People's Republic ofChina
Telexes: 210070 FMPRC CN
22478 MFERT CN
(Please forward to Public Security Minister
WANG Fang)
COPIES TO: Diplomatic representatives of the People's Republic of China in
your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 23 November 1990.

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