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According to recent reports, Wu Xilong has been held in solitary confinement for nearly seven months after staging hunger strikes in protest at the fact that prison authorities had prevented his wife from visiting him. It is not known whether the punishment, imposed on May 13, is still being enforced. Wu, born in 1969, is held at the No. 4 prison in Zhejiang Province.
Fellow CDP members Zhu Yufu, Mao Qingxiang and Xu Guang were prosecuted in the same trial as Wu on October 25, 1999, in Hangzhou. All four were accused of using the Internet to communicate with groups outside China and of publishing a journal called Opposition Party. On November 11, Wu, Zhu, Mao and Xu were sentenced to 11, seven, eight and five years imprisonment respectively. Their appeal was turned down in mid-December 1999. Wus wife, Shan Chenfeng, has suffered continuous harassment and detention for liaising with CDP members.
Tong Shidong and Liao Shihua also helped produce Opposition Party. Both are now serving prison terms of ten and six years respectively on charges of subversion. The verdict was issued by the Changsha City Intermediate Peoples Court on December 22, 1999.
The following are among the CDP members held under RTL, an administrative punishment deemed inherently arbitrary by the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention:
On September 18, 1998, Han Lifa delivered a petition to establish the Shanghai CDP Preparatory Committee to the municipal Civil Affairs Bureau. The petition, signed by Han, Zhou Jianhe, Xu Hong, Yao Zhenxian and Li Guotao, was also sent by mail. It was returned to the sender.
Han Lifa, who had also been involved in a weekly human rights study group, was sentenced in October 1998 to nine months of Custody and Education for allegedly patronizing prostitutes. When his family arrived to pick him up on his July 22, 1999, release date, they discovered that his sentence had been extended by two years.
Li Guotao, a Shanghai computer engineer, was detained in mid-June 1999 after he joined 23 signers of a petition to the mayor of Shanghai asking for the release of Dai Xuewu whom petitioners claimed was wrongfully detained over the theft of a mobile phone. It is believed that the true reason for Dais arrest was speaking out against the imprisonment of his brother Dai Xuezhong, a CDP member sentenced to three years in prison in January 1999. Li was sentenced to a three year RTL term for disturbing social order on June 28, 1999. Li, born in 1958, previously served three years in RTL from 1994 to 1997 after taking part in the Shanghais Human Rights Association.
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