Zhadi's Den

Random essays on wine, writing, moving to San Francisco, surfing, cats (exotic and otherwise) and zombies...depending on my mood.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Hao Wu Freed! Woo hoo!!!

Considering that this comes several days after the Wall Street Journal article mentioned in my previous post, I think it's at least somewhat safe to assume that the article may have had something to do with his release. Whatever the reason, this is great news!

English / fran├žais11 July 2006 Reporters Without Borders / Internet Freedom desk


Reporters Without Borders voiced "immense relief" at the news of the release today of blogger and documentary filmmaker Hao Wu after nearly five months in detention. His release was reported by his sister, Na Wu. "

Let us not forget, however, that Hao was kidnapped by the Chinese security services, which violated his most basic rights by claiming that his case was a matter of national security," the press freedom organisation said. " At the same time, 50 other people are currently in prison in China for writing about 'subversive' subjects online," Reporters Without Borders continued. "China is by far the world's biggest prison for bloggers and cyber-dissidents. We would also like to pay tribute to the courage of this blogger's sister, who battled relentlessly for his release."

Hao was arrested on 22 February while preparing a report about an underground Protestant church. He was held in isolation for 140 days, during which he was never allowed to receive the help of a lawyer. The Beijing Public Security Bureau (PSB) never revealed the reasons for his arrest. He was said to be "under house arrest" but he was never allowed to receive a visit from his relatives or to telephone them. The PSB said this was necessary because there had been a "breach of national security."

Reporters Without Borders wrote to Chinese President Hu Jintao in March asking him to intercede on Hao's behalf. The organisation also addressed requests for help to the European Union, including a 10 July letter to European Parliament president Josep Borrell asking him to raise the cases of Hao and two other imprisoned cyber-dissidents during his 8-14 July visit to China. This request was made just four days after the European Parliament adopted a resolution about online free expression that mentioned Hao.

Hao had a blog called Beijing or Bust in which he wrote under the pseudonym of Beijing Loafer. His sister, Na, kept a blog all the time he was detained in which she reported on her fight to have him freed.

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  • At 12:33 PM, Blogger FreeThinker said…

    Woo hoo indeed!!! Makes me glad to be an American (although our own freedoms are slowly slipping away ...)

  • At 12:59 PM, Blogger zhadi said…

    I like to think that there's still hope that we'll get some of ours back...people seem to be waking up around this country...Some of 'em, at least!

  • At 10:58 PM, Blogger Other Lisa said…

    Yeah. I can't tell you how happy I am. It's been a sort of surreal experience, from my own, selfish perspective - I can't believe that someone I know has had to go through this.

  • At 3:10 AM, Blogger Mr. Fabulous said…

    This is great news!

  • At 9:12 AM, Blogger zhadi said…

    OL, I don't think your perspective is selfish at all - if you didn't care about him and worry, THAT would be selfish.

    Thanks, Mr. Fab!


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