www.unuudur.com » Tibetan, Mongolian Dissidents Silenced During Kerry Visit

Tibetan, Mongolian Dissidents Silenced During Kerry Visit

[Нийтэлсэн: 13:49 11.07.2014 ]

www.rfa.org

As U.S. and Chinese officials began a high-profile round of annual talks in Beijing on Wednesday, Tibetan poet and writer Tsering Woeser was once more placed under house arrest at her Beijing home.

She said the move came after she posted on Twitter and Facebook that she had received an invitation from U.S. officials.

“I was put under guard, probably because I wrote on Twitter and Facebook that I had a call from the U.S. Embassy,” Woeser told RFA on the eve of the sixth round of annual strategic bilateral talks.

“The U.S. Embassy called me to invite me to a meeting and a banquet,” she said.

Woeser “has emerged as the most prominent mainland activist speaking out publicly about human rights conditions” for Tibetans, the U.S. State Department said in a statement after she won its “Woman of Courage” award in 2013.

Her website Invisible Tibet, together with her poetry and nonfiction and writings on social media have given a voice to millions of Tibetans “who are prevented from expressing themselves to the outside world due to government efforts to curtail the flow of information,” the State Department said.

Woeser was prevented from leaving China to collect the award in person.

The U.S. delegation to the bilateral talks in Beijing is led by Secretary of State John Kerry.

Watched ‘in shifts’

Woeser said that she had been placed under surveillance beginning at around 7.00 p.m. local time on Tuesday, shortly after she and husband Wang Lixiong returned from a 20-day trip to Inner Mongolia.

She said state security police had sent students from China’s Public Security University to keep watch outside her apartment building.

“At around 7:00 p.m., state security officers came to our home,” Woeser said.

“They said that for the next two days we are forbidden to go out, and that they have to take up posts to monitor us. Essentially, we have been put under house arrest.”

Two plainclothes guards are now stationed outside her residence “in shifts,” she said.

“One might be a state security officer and the other is a student from the Public Security University. There are also security personnel stationed outside the building, but we don’t know how many.”

When her husband asked why restrictions had been placed on their movements, he was told the reason was “confidential,” Woeser said.

“But I know that it’s because of the scheduled meeting at the American Embassy,” she said.

Out of touch

Meanwhile, relatives of jailed ethnic Mongolian dissident Hada said they had lost touch with him after the family tried to release a document detailing his plight, to coincide with the Sino-U.S. strategic dialogue.

Hada’s wife Xinna said the document accuses the Chinese government of jailing her husband for 15 years and then holding him under illegal detention for a further four years.

“I was going to visit him and get him to sign it, but I couldn’t get through on the phone,” Xinna said. “The state security police told me they were going to have him ‘vacationed.’”

In March, Xinna wrote to Chinese president Xi Jinping calling for her husband’s immediate release amid growing fears for his health.

Hada, in his mid-50s, is being held under de facto house arrest after 15 years in jail on charges of “separatism” and “espionage.”

Family members and rights activists say that he is suffering from deteriorating mental health and has been denied medical treatment under extrajudicial detention at the Jinye Ecological Park in the regional capital of Hohhot.

Reported by Hai Nan for RFA’s Cantonese Service, by Xi Wang for the Mandarin Service, and by the Tibetan Service. Translated and written in English by Luisetta Mudie, by Ping Chen, and by Karma Dorjee.



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