Chen Phones US Congress For Help To Leave China With Family

Chen Phones US Congress For Help To Leave China With Family

Beijing : China | May 03, 2012 at 6:40 PM PDT
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Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng was so afraid for the safety of his family he phoned Rep Chris Smith, chairman of a congressional commission on China, to tell him "I'm concerned most right now with the safety of my mother and brothers. I really want to know what's going on with them," BBC said.

Using Bob Fu, a supporter and friend to act as his translator, Chen, in a call broadcast live before the Congressional hearing from a mobile phone, said "I want to come to the US to rest. I have not had a rest in 10 years. I want to meet with Secretary Clinton. I hope I can get more help from her."

A BBC correspondent in China said Chen was being held ‘effectively under detention’ in a hospital with his wife and children guarded by police preventing media, as well as lawyers and US diplomats from reaching him.

Chen believed the Chinese government had ‘reneged’ on an agreement he would be given ‘safety’ in a university town elsewhere in China and instead wanted to leave the country with his family to US.

He had been at the US Embassy for almost a week, after escaping from house arrest in his village in Shandong, but left after accepting China’s assurances of safety. Chinese authorities held him under house arrest after he exposed human rights violation, revealing thousands of women were forced to have abortions because of the country’s ‘one-child-policy.’

Chinese officials accused the US of meddling with its affairs and demanded apology for housing Chen at the embassy, but Mrs. Clinton who was in Beijing for annual bilateral talks, although she didn’t mention Chen, addressed the topic of human rights in her speech.

Mrs. Clinton said "The United States believes that no state can legitimately deny the universal rights that belong to every human being - or punish those who exercise them."

dunite is based in Manila, National Capital Region, Philippines, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
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