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People's Republic of China: Further information on arbitrary arrest / fear for safety: Hongda Harry Wu

, N° d'index: ASA 17/050/1995

The Xinhua news agency today (27 July 1995) released a video recording of Harry Wo "confessing" that the information in two television programs he made with a reporter of the BBC was "wrong and untrue". The video reportedly shows Harry Wu, looking tired and unkempt, making his confession in the presence of a Chinese official. AI continues to call for the release of Hongda Harry Wu, whom it believes to be a prisoner of conscience.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: ASA 17/50/95
Distr: UA/SC
27 July 1995
Further information (2) on UA 150/95 (ASA 17/43/95, 28 June 1995) and follow-up
ASA 17/48/95, 12 July 1995 - Arbitrary Arrest / Fear for Safety
PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINAHongda Harry Wu (m), aged 58, human rights activist
China's official news agency, Xinhua, today released a video recording of Harry
Wu "confessing" that the information in two television programmes he made with
a television reporter of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) was "wrong
and untrue". The video was shown on Chinese television and reportedly shows
Harry Wu, looking tired and unkempt, making his confession in the presence
of a Chinese official. Xinhua also released an accompanying statement, according
to which Harry Wu admitted that "the contents of the two video tapes, falsely
accusing China of exporting products made by prisoners, were 'wrong' and
'untrue'" and that he had "cooked up the tapes together with [a] BBC
correspondent..."
Harry Wu was accused on 8 July 1995 of "stealing state secrets". According
to Xinhua, the accusation relates to information broadcast in the two BBC
television programmes. However, the Xinhua statement claims that none of the
information he is accused of providing to foreign governments and organizations
was correct. It therefore remains unclear what he has done which amounts to
"stealing state secrets" and the accusation appears ill-founded and
contradictory.
Amnesty International considers that Harry Wu Hongda is a prisoner of conscience
detained solely for his human rights activities. The organization continues
to have serious concerns for his physical safety.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and
airmail letters either in English, Chinese, or in your own language:
- calling for the immediate and unconditional release of Hongda Harry Wu;
- urging the authorities to ensure that, while in detention, Hongda Harry Wu
is treated in accordance with international standards for the treatment of
prisoners and that he is protected from all forms of ill-treatment;
- urging that he receive medical treatment for existing medical conditions.
APPEALS TO:
Director of the Hubei Department of Public Security
TIAN Qiyu Juzhang
Gong'anting
Fujiapo, Wuchang
Wuhanshi 430070
Hubeisheng
People's Republic of China
Telegrams: Director of the Department of Public Security Tian Qiyu, Wuhan,
Hubei Province, China
Salutation: Dear Director
Premier of the People's Republic of China
LI Peng Zongli
Guowuyuan
9 Xihuangchenggenbeijie
2
Beijingshi 100032
People's Republic of China
Telexes: 210070 FMPRC CN or 22478 MFERT CN
Faxes: + 86 10 512 5810 / 513 0606
(via Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Telegrams: Premier Li Peng, Beijing, China
Salutation: Your Excellency
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
Editor-in-Chief of Hubei Daily
ZHOU Chuanren Zongbianji
Hubei Ribao
4 Dongting, 2 Lu
Wuhanshi
Hubeisheng
People's Republic of China
and to diplomatic representatives of the People's Republic of China accredited
to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 7 September 1995.

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