A New Tourism Promo for Dongshigu Village, Home of Chen Guangcheng & Family?
Siweiluozi translates a Twitter posting by activist Hu Jia: a mock tourism ad, perhaps, for the village where Chen Guangcheng and his family have been held under house arrest since his release from prison in September 2010.
Over the last several weeks, ever since the first anniversary of Chen Guangcheng’s release from prison, there have been several waves of people making the very risky journey to try to visit him at his home in Dongshigu Village, in Shandong Province’s Yi’nan County. Without exception, they have been intercepted by the local thugs who guard the perimeter of the village, roughed up, and sent away ….
Below, I translate an item posted on Twitter last night by the activist Hu Jia, a good friend of Chen Guangcheng:
Do you want to experience stability-maintenance? Please go to Dongshigu, in Yi’nan, Shandong Province ….
Want to witness police and bandits in league with each other? Visit Dongshigu ….
Want to fully understand the value of freedom? Please go to Dongshigu, in Yi’nan, Shandong Province.
The Associated Press’ Gillian Wong describes some recent visitors’ experiences:
About 20 people have tried to visit the lawyer in eastern China in the past week, by one activist’s count, among them Chinese not previously known to be human rights campaigners.
One of the newcomers is a 45-year-old man surnamed Xu. He was caught by police at a long-distance bus station in Linyi, near Chen’s village, last Wednesday. He was detained at a police station and questioned on suspicion of drug trafficking before being driven back to his hometown two hours away.
“I knew it was going to be dangerous, but I didn’t think it would be this dangerous,” Xu said in a phone interview Sunday. He asked that he not be further identified for fear of government reprisal and said he only wanted to visit Chen to give him some money.
“He is a legal citizen, not a criminal; we should have the right to visit him,” Xu said, while noting his own record had now been stained by the drugs charges.
See also reports of the recently attempted visits via CDT.
South China Morning Post reports that a new, custom-built house has been built to house Chen and his wife. While the move will only place them further out of would-be visitors’ reach, it may at least allow their six-year-old daughter to resume her education.
Citing village and family sources, activist He Peirong said the authorities planned to move Chen and his wife Yuan Weijing into the purpose-built house surrounded by a high wall at the south of Dongshigu village, Linyi , where they can be kept under closer watch by security agents. She said the house was finished in July but was unsure whether they had been moved in yet.
“They want them to be completely isolated,” she said, adding she had been told the couple’s six-year-old daughter is unlikely to be able to join them and would be sent to live with relatives. Their eight-year-old son is already living with relatives and has not been allowed to visit his parents since the Lunar New Year.
An artist’s impression of the new facility has leaked via microblogs: