Right before the 2021 International Human Rights Day, the community of UK’s Chevening Scholarship Alumni released a joint letter to express solidarity with detained Chinese feminist journalist Huang Xueqin and her friend, an occupational disease activist, Wang Jianbing


A total of 112 Chevening scholars from across 30 countries, who received the scholarship between 1995 and 2021, have signed a letter of solidarity. The letter requests the UK’s Foreign Ministry and Chevening to publicly support detained Chinese feminist journalist Huang Xueqin and occupational disease activist Wang Jianbing, and to have an open dialogue about human rights with the Chinese government.

中国女权记者与#metoo行动家黄雪琴为英国Chevening(志奋领)2021/22奖学金的中国得主,原计划于9月20日经深圳前往香港机场,飞赴英国University of Sussex留学,其友职业病权益倡导者王建兵(暱称“煎饼”)则原计划于当天爲其送行。然而,两人于今年9月19日下午3点,启程赴英前夕,在王建兵广州家中失联超过两个月。

Chinese independent investigative journalist and #Metoo activist Huang Xueqin is the Chinese winner of the 2021/22 Chevening scholarship. She planned to arrive at Hong Kong airport from Guangzhou first and then fly from there to the University of Sussex in the UK to start her postgraduate program on September 20. Her friend, an occupational disease activist, Wang Jianbing (known as “pancake,” or jianbing in Chinese), planned to accompany her off at the airport. Yet at 3 pm, September 19, on the eve of Huang’s departure, they were both detained at Wang Jianbing’s home in Guangzhou. It has been over two months since that happened.


On November 5, Wang Jianbing’s family received from the Guangzhou Public Security Bureau a “notice of arrest” numbered “[2021] x 2.” It officially confirmed that Wang Jianbing was arrested under the charge of “ Inciting subversion of state power.” He is currently detained at Guangzhou’s Number 1 Detention Center. During this period, Wang Jianbing’s lawyer tried several times to meet him and apply for his release on bail. Yet these requests were rejected by the Chinese authorities. Until now, family members of the two detainees (known together as “Xuebing”(Snow Pellets), a Chinese cookie) have not been able to meet them.

该政治打压案件至今已陆续获得Amnesty International (国际特赦)、Reporters Without Borders (无国界记者)、International Federation of Journalists、Chinese Human Rights Defenders(中国人权捍卫者)及The Coalition For Women in Journalism(女性新闻工作者联盟)等国际组织的关注与声援。(详见:https://free-xueq-jianb.github.io/links/)


This case of political repression has received the attention and support of many international groups, such as Amnesty International, Reporters Without Borders, International Federation of Journalists, Chinese Human Rights Defenders, and The Coalition For Women in Journalism. (For details, please check https://free-xueq-jianb.github.io/links/.) As a winner of the UK Chevening scholarship and a restless fighter for the freedom of expression and women’s rights, Huang Xueqin’s experience has evoked serious concerns within the Chevening alumni community.


The community soon released an open letter. Within one week since the start of the petition, they collected signatures from 112 Chevening alumni across over 30 countries, who received the scholarship between 1995 and 2021. Most signatories came from Colombia, Brazil, India, Taiwan, Mexico, and South Africa. These signatures demonstrate that the Chevening alumni are paying close attention to the suffering of the two detainees. There is an expectation within the community that the UK Foreign Ministry and Chevening will take a stance and act positively on this case.

“英国政府已于11月20日发表声明,呼吁中国当局应提供可验证的证据,对外说明女网球星彭帅的安危和下落。英国政府当然也必须针对中国记者黄雪琴的失踪表达关切,因为她已经获得英国政府提供的志奋领奖学金,却在九月要离开广州、前往Sussex大学进修的前一天人间蒸发”毕业于Loughborough University的志奋领奖学金校友,来自台湾的吕秉原说。

“The UK government has released a statement on 20 November 2021 to urge the Chinese authorities to provide verifiable evidence of tennis star Peng Shuai’s safety and whereabouts. It, of course, also needs to express its concerns over the disappearance of Chinese journalist Huang Xueqin, who has been awarded the UK government’s Chevening scholarship but went missing one day before she was scheduled to leave Guangzhou in September to study at the University of Sussex.” said Chevening Scholarship alumnus and a graduate of Loughborough University, Edward Pingyuan from Taiwan.

“黄雪琴是中国一个优秀的记者和女性主义行动者,认识她的朋友都会觉得她nice, 谦和,非常的有能量,是一个完全优秀的志奋领学人。如今在她即将赴英国的路程中被拘留,英国政府和志奋领至今未曾对此发出过任何的声明和公开的表达,让我们感到十分的痛心和难过,她如此优秀如此deserve这个奖学金和海外自由学习的氛围,真希望志奋领能帮助她获得更好的对待和生活”一位不愿透露姓名与奖学金得奖年份的中国志奋领奖学金得主说。

“Huang Xueqin is a brilliant journalist and women’s rights activist. Friends who know her well describe her as nice, modest, and extremely competent. She is an outstanding Chevening scholar. She was detained when she was about to leave for the UK. The UK government and Chevening have not spoken out publicly about this case, which makes us extremely sad and disappointed. She is remarkable and deserves this scholarship. She should be able to study abroad freely. We hope that Chevening can help her obtain better treatment and a better life,” said an anonymous Chevening alumnus from China.


The open letter requests the Chevening Scholarship, which is affiliated to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) to publish a letter to the global alumni community, asking them to show concerns over the “0919 Xuebing case,” as well as to pay more attention to human rights issues in general. In addition, it demands the FCDO and the Chevening leadership to initiate an open dialogue with the Chinese government on this case and to uphold the rights the two detainees deserve. The last part of the letter asks the Chinese authorities to immediately release Huang Xueqin and Wang Jianbing.


This letter was published on December 8 (GMT+8) on the official website for the “0919 Xuebing case,” as well as on Twitter and the Facebook page “Free Xueqin & Jianbing.” Meanwhile, the letter has been sent to the FCDO and the Chevening Secretariat. No response has been received from them yet.


  1. “0919雪饼案”官方网站 https://free-xueq-jianb.github.io/links/
  2. 脸书粉丝专页“Freexueqin黄雪琴&Jianbing王建兵”https://www.facebook.com/Freexueqinjianbing
  3. “0919雪饼”Twitter:https://twitter.com/FreeXueBing

Important links:

  1. [0919 Xuebing case] official website https://free-xueq-jianb.github.io/links/
  2. Facebook page [Free Xueqin & Jianbing] https://www.facebook.com/Freexueqinjianbing
  3. [0919 Xuebing] Twitter: https://twitter.com/FreeXueBing

全球声援连结 Global Solidarity Links:

  1. Amnesty International (国际特赦): https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2021/11/china-metoo-journalist-and-labour-activist-facing-subversion-charge-must-be-released/
  2. Reporters Without Borders (无国界记者): https://rsf.org/en/news/rsf-calls-release-chinese-investigative-journalist-huang-xueqin
  3. International Federation of Journalists: https://www.ifj.org/media-centre/news/detail/category/press-releases/article/china-chinese-journalist-huang-xueqin-thought-detained-after-disappearance.html
  4. Chinese Human Rights Defenders(中国人权捍卫者): https://www.nchrd.org/2021/09/china-immediately-release-metoo-activist-and-fellow-civil-society-advocate/
  5. The Coalition For Women in Journalism(女性新闻工作者联盟): https://womeninjournalism.org/cfwij-press-statements/china-cfwij-is-alarmed-by-the-possible-detention-of-sophia-huang-xueqin

新闻联络人:[email protected]

Media Contact: [email protected]


Thank you for your attention and time, please continue to follow and shed light on this case, so that journalists and NGO activists who defend freedom of speech can go home soon.

联署信下载 Full Version of Statement Download (Including Cosignatory List)


English Press Release