by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) May 30, 2012
The Chinese province where blind activist Chen Guangcheng was under house arrest before he fled has sacked the top official in charge of the courts, prosecution and police, state press said on Wednesday.
Bai Jimin was dismissed from the standing committee of the Communist Party of the eastern province of Shandong on Tuesday, the official China News Service said in a short report.
His dismissal comes after Chen sparked a diplomatic row between Beijing and Washington after taking refuge in the US embassy and on May 20 being allowed to leave China to study in New York.
Chen entered the US Embassy in late April after a daring escape from extra-legal house arrest in Shandong's Dongshigu village, where he had languished since his release from prison in 2010.
The self-taught lawyer was jailed in 2006 after he exposed widespread forced abortions and sterilisations in Shandong's "one-child" family population control policy.
During his house arrest, he and his family were beaten and isolated from friends and supporters by up to 60 hired thugs who refused to allow him to communicate with the outside world or leave his home.
No official reason was given for the sacking of Bai, 58, who was given a lower-level post in the provincial legislature, but rights activists welcomed the move.
"I can only hope that in the future Shandong leaders will show full respect for the law and work to rule Shandong by law," Shandong rights lawyer Liu Weiguo, who has represented members of Chen's family, told AFP.
"Chen's case has been highly unusual for its illegalities and lack of legal procedure. In such unusual cases it is hard to believe that the head of the politics and law commission went unaware."
China News from SinoDaily.com
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China's 'lawlessness' threatens stability: Chen
New York (AFP) May 30, 2012
Blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng has accused Beijing of failing to uphold its own laws, saying its abusive treatment of dissidents threatens the country's political stability. "The fundamental question the Chinese government must face is lawlessness. China does not lack laws, but the rule of law," Chen wrote in an op-ed published Tuesday on the New York Times website. "As a result, ... read more
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