China: Lu Gengsong charged with subversion

***UPDATE: Having been formally charged for “inciting subversion” in September 2007, on 4 February, 2008, LU Gengsong was sentenced by the Intermediate People’s Court of Hangzhou City to 4 years imprisonment and a year deprivation of political rights. English PEN continues to call for his immediate release in accordance with Article 19. ***


English PEN is seriously concerned about the detention of the writer and human rights activist Lu Gengsong.
According to PEN’s information, Lu Gengsong was arrested in Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province, on 24 August 2007, following the on-line publication of articles which were critical of the Chinese authorities. His home was searched and his computer and personal files were reportedly confiscated. His wife was also taken in for questioning as a ‘criminal suspect’ and released three hours later. On 29 September, Lu Gengsong was formally charged with ‘inciting subversion of state power’, a charge which is often used to silence dissidents. The initial charge of ‘illegal possession of state secrets’ was subsequently dropped. Lu is currently at the Xihu (West Lake) Detention Centre in Hangzhou City.


According to the organisation Human Rights in China, Lu is scheduled to stand trial on 22 January 2008.
Lu Gengsong, a history graduate from Zhejiang University, taught at the Zhejiang Higher Professional School of Public Security before being expelled in 1993 because of his pro-democracy activities. He went on to become a freelance writer, and has published several books on political reform, including A History of Chinese Community Party Corrupt Officials in 2000. Lu is known for his reporting on human rights violations and his political commentaries published on the internet. He is also an active member of the banned China Democracy Party (CDP).
Please send appeals:
• Expressing concerns that Lu Gengsong is being held for his critical writings and pro-democracy activities;
• Calling for his immediate and unconditional release in accordance with Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to which China is a signatory.
Appeals to:
His Excellency Hu Jintao
President of the People’s Republic of China
State Council
Beijing 100032
Procurator General Mr. Jia Chunwang
Supreme People’s Procuratorate
Beiheyan Street 147
100726 Beijing
Please note that fax numbers are no longer available for the Chinese authorities, so it may be more effective to forward appeals via the Chinese representatives in London:
Her Excellency Mrs. Fu Ying
Embassy of the People’s Republic of China
49-51 Portland Place
London W1B 4JL



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