At the request of Ding Zilin, a spokesperson for the Tiananmen Mothers, Human Rights in China is releasing an open letter entitled “To Chai Ling—A Belated Open Letter Response.” HRIC has translated the letter into English (see below).
On June 4, 2012, Chai Ling posted online an op-ed piece in English, “I Forgive Them,” in which, citing her newly discovered Christian faith, she expressed forgiveness of the Chinese Communist leaders responsible for the 1989 military crackdown. Her statements sparked an active controversy online, drawing criticism from exiled Chinese activists and former 1989 student leaders. On June 8, 2012, Chai Ling issued a clarification in her own defense, in a post in Chinese.
In light of the ongoing official impunity for the crackdown, lack of official response to the Tiananmen Mothers’ demands for “truth, compensation, and official accountability,” and because of intensifying persecution of Tiananmen Mothers’ group members, Ding writes that she could not remain silent after reading Chai’s statements. Ding expresses complete disappointment in Chai and criticizes her forgiveness as a betrayal of the spirit of the 1989 Democracy Movement, and an act that debases the heroes, victims, and survivors of June Fourth.
For more information on the Tiananmen Mothers’ activism, see:
- Commemorating the 23rd Anniversary of the Passing of the Victims of the 1989 June Fourth Crackdown: Essay by the Tiananmen Mothers, May 31, 2012
- 73-Year-Old Member of Tiananmen Mothers Commits Suicide, May 27, 2012
- Tiananmen Mothers Urge Government Dialogue to Resolve June Fourth Massacre, Feb. 29, 2012
- For All Families of June Fourth Victims: Justice Must Accompany Compensation, June 3, 2011
- “The Souls of Those Killed during June Fourth Shall Not Be Defiled; Their Families Shall Not Be Dishonored”: Essay by the Tiananmen Mothers, May 30, 2011
- “An Offering to the Spirits of the Victims: Essay by the Tiananmen Mothers, June 1, 2010
- “We Must Let ‘June Fourth’ Become a Topic of Public Discussion in the Media and on the Internet” (Tiananmen Mothers), March 4, 2010
- Let Our Children’s Lives Continue through Us: Interview with Ding Zilin, China Rights Forum, 2009, No.2
- Tiananmen Mothers: Public Statement on the 20th Anniversary of the June Fourth Massacre, May 27, 2009
- Support the Tiananmen Mothers, June Fourth: 1989-2009