Wang Quanzhang has been in police custody for 1,000 days, during which time, his family and legal team have denied visitation rights. On April 4, Wang’s wife, Li Wenzu launched a campaign, to walk from Beijing to Tianjin to demand access to her husband. Not a single media outlet reported on this.
In August 2015, during a government-led crackdown, human rights lawyer, Wang Quangzhang disappeared. In the lead up his disappearance he had taken on several high profile legal cases, including the torture of Falun Gong practitioners by police. Since then, his Wang’s wife and his legal team have been denied access. Li has launched several applications to the police, and has also launched several actions in the court, complaining about the failure of the police to follow legal procedures and grant her access to her husband. None have been successful.
On April 4, Li launched a campaign to march from Beijing to Tianjin, where she believes her husband is been held, to demand answers from the authorities. The launch of Li’s campaign was attended by several journalists, however to date, not a single outlet has published a story.
One journalist told the IFJ, “Not a single media is bold enough to report on human rights lawyer crackdown campaign since it started.”
Another journalist told the IFJ that there was no interference when they started following Li on her march.
The IFJ Asia Pacific office said: “The failure of the media to properly report on this case and the wider crackdown on human rights lawyers raises serious questions about the regression of press freedom in China. However, the professionalism of the media should never be compromised.”
The IFJ calls on President Xi Jinping to confirm the whereabouts of Wang Quangzhang, and grant his family access.
The IFJ also urges all Mainland journalists to maintain their professionalism.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0946
The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 140 countries
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