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Citizens' Square

Citizens’ Square is a virtual Democracy Wall for individuals from China to share their stories online in personal narratives, open letters, statements, and case descriptions, and through photos, court documents, and videos. While most of the posted items are in Chinese, HRIC provides in English the title and a descriptive summary of each item. On occasion, HRIC also provides English translation of the contents of the item itself.

Launched in spring 2010, Citizens’ Square has served as an uncensored platform for petitioners, rights defenders, lawyers, and other citizens to expose corruption and official malfeasance, publicize cases of abuse ranging from illegal detention to kidnapping and torture, and issue public statements, including calls for official accountability and transparency and appeals for just compensation for forced evictions.

The expansion of this virtual Democracy Wall reflects the powerful desire among Chinese citizens to assert their rights and the growing citizen activism in China. Postings on Citizens’ Square have also helped individuals and groups bring international press attention to their cases.

In Citizens’ Square, journalists, researchers, and the general public can learn more about individual cases.

Items 1 - 10 of 556
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Yu Wensheng, rights defense lawyer from Beijing, had his practicing license first confiscated in July 2017 for representing lawyer Wang Quanzhang, who has been in custody since July 2015 in the 709 Crackdown. Subsequently, his license, invalidated, was returned to him, which did not allow him to...
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Sichuan human rights activist Huang Qi’s defense lawyer, Sui Muqing, had agreed on a time to examine the procuratorate’s case files, but the day before, the procuratorate gave notice that they had canceled the review due to a business trip. Given that the previous time they had illegally refused to...
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Zhaoyuan, Shandong netizen Wang Jiangfeng, who was sentenced to two years for “picking quarrels and provoking troubles” after publishing comments on the Internet calling Mao Zedong “Bandit Mao,” Xi Jinping “Steamed Bun Xi,” and so on, received a “Written Decision for Retrial” on the effective date...
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On the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, Wang Xiuying, a woman in her 80s from Beijing, published an open letter to Xi Jinping arguing that “continuing the Party’s absolute leadership over the army is paradoxical.” The open letter states that the army’s...
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Eighteen citizens, including Ye Qinghuan, Yang Lingyun, and Zheng Wei issued a joint declaration, stating their intent to run for election as independent local and People’s Congress representatives, and calling on voters in Beijing to vote for them. They intend to truly represent the people and do...
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As the National Supervision Law of the People’s Republic of China (Draft) officially entered the legislative review process, a group of mainland lawyers, law PhDs, and scholars jointly issued a letter to the National People’s Congress as well as its Standing Committee, presenting their concern that...
Lawyer Yu Wensheng filed a criminal complaint with the Beijing Municipal Procuratorate requesting that Miao Lin, the Director of the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Justice, and others involved be held legally accountable for abusing their power in using the annual renewal of law licenses to suppress...
Wen Donghai—defense lawyer of Liu Feiyue, head of Civil Rights and Livelihood Watch and activist from Hubei—found out, after attending a meeting with the procuratorate that on August 8, 2017 Liu’s case of “inciting subversion of state power” has been transferred again to the Suizhou Procuratorate,...
On July 2, 2017, Jiangxi rights activist Liu Shaoming, who resides in Guangzhou, was sentenced by the Guangzhou Intermediate People’s Court to four years and six months in prison and three years’ deprivation of political rights for “inciting subversion of state power.” Liu Shaoming was accused of...
It has been two years since labor rights activist Liu Shaoming was detained, and over a year since his trial. Still, the court has yet to issue a verdict. Though initially in good health, Liu has experienced abdominal pain since October 2016, and the pain has intensified this year, a worrisome sign...

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