Reporters Without Borders urges the authorities in the southeastern province of Fujian to grant a definitive release to Fan Yanqiong, a blogger who is serving a two-year jail sentence on a charge of defaming the police. Fan was taken to hospital in a serious condition on 25 August but it seems she had been accorded only a provisional release on health grounds.
Fan was one of three bloggers who were convicted for publicising the case of Yan Xiaoling, a young woman who died after allegedly being gang-raped by individuals with links to the police. The other two bloggers, Wu Huaying and You Jingyou, who were given one-year jail sentences, were released at the start of June.
Fan has been held since 26 June 2009 in Fujian’s Mawei prison where her health has deteriorated a great deal. Her lawyer, Liu Xiaoyuan, said the permission for her hospitalisation arrived too late because her condition was already alarming. Fan had made eight previous requests for appropriate medical attention, but all had been refused.
At the time of her trial in April 2010, she could not longer stand or breathe properly. She was using a wheel chair and an oxygen mask. She was coughing a great deal and was suffering from high blood pressure, muscular atrophy and terrible pains in all her limbs.
During her transfer to hospital on 25 August, Fan said: “What I would like to say above all is that in this despotic country, where freedom of expression is limited, where we are deprived of our freedom, those who expose the truth are in the right.”
More information about the case: http://en.rsf.org/china-prison-sentences-for-three-16-04-2010,37058.html
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