Dissident writer Yu Jie, who was detained by police in 2010 for writing a critical book about Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, released a statement and held a press conference in Washington D.C. yesterday accusing the Chinese government of a long list of abuses that led him to flee the country for the United States last week:
In a lengthy statement, the 38-year-old said government censorship had made him “a non-existent person in the public space”, unable to publish any work on the mainland. But his problems escalated when Liu’s award was announced in October 2010 and “illegal house arrests, torture, surveillance, tracking, and being taken on ‘trips’ became part of my everyday life”.
His family was placed under house arrest and even their phone and internet connections were cut, leaving them in “an endless black hole”. The day before the Nobel ceremony in December, plain clothes officers hooded and abducted him and began beating him in the head and face, he said.
“They stripped off all my clothes and pushed me, naked, to the ground, and kicked me maniacally. They also had a camera and were taking pictures as I was being beaten, saying with glee that they would post the naked photos online,” Yu added.
“They forced me to kneel and slapped me over a hundred times in the face. They even forced me to slap myself … They also kicked me in the chest and then stood on me after I had fallen to the ground.”
Yu devoted a large portion of the statement to describe his treatment after friend and fellow activist Liu Xiaobo received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010. The activist group Human Rights in China has posted the full text of the statement, in which Yu also explains his plans now that he has arrived in America:
After arriving in the U.S., my main writing plans for the near future are: publish the Chinese edition of Liu Xiaobo’s biography two months from now and various foreign language editions afterwards. I began writing the biography in early 2009, and it is the only biography of Liu Xiaobo authorized by Liu Xia. I hope, through this biography, to comprehensively introduce Liu Xiaobo’s life, philosophy, and creativity, and give readers around the world, including those inside China, a deeper understanding of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate. I will use this book as an opportunity to call on people on every possible occasion to continue to pay close attention to Liu Xiaobo’s and Liu Xia’s fates so that they can be freed as soon as possible.
I also plan to publish a new book, Hu Jintao: Cold-Blooded Tyrant (冷血暴君胡锦涛), within the next six months. This will be the companion book to China’s Best Actor: Wen Jiabao and will be a eulogy for Hu Jintao as he exits the stage of history. Hu Jintao will be a comprehensive analysis of Hu’s governance and provide analysis and commentary on the major features of the Hu era, including “harmonious society,” “the rise of a great nation,” “China model,” and “stability maintenance.” It will enable readers in China and beyond as well as the international community to see the truth behind China’s economic growth—reckless autocracy, rampant corruption, deterioration of human rights, damage to the environment, moral decline—and that Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao are sinners of history whose sins cannot be forgiven.
I am a true patriot. There is a line in Macbeth that goes, “I think our country sinks beneath the yoke; / It weeps, it bleeds, and each new day a gash / Is added to her wounds.” I worry and suffer about this. I will make exposing and criticizing the tyrannical rule of the CPC my life’s cause. For each day that this government that has robbed and plundered China’s riches and enslaved and crippled the Chinese people does not fall, I will not stop exposing and criticizing it. I further believe that in the near future I will return to a China that has achieved democracy and freedom. Then, our lives will be like those described in the Bible, “[Behold,] how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” And those kleptocrats and traitors who wrought tyranny, from Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao to every wicked state security officer, will be put on trial to await an even more shameful end than that of Saddam Hussein, Hosni Mubarak, and Muammar al-Gaddafi. Let us work together so that that day may come as soon as possible.
See also an AFP video report on Wednesday’s press conference which has been posted to YouTube.