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[Forward]A joint statement to urge the Shenyang Police to immediately release lawyer Li Yuhan by 85 lawyers and citizens

We are shocked and are gravely concerned that 23 days after her disappearance, Beijing lawyer Li Yuhan was criminally detained on 31 October 2017 for “picking quarrels and provoking troubles” by the Heping branch office of the Shenyang city Public Security Bureau.

At the age of sixty, and despite her health problems (hypertension and heart disease), lawyer Li Yuhan has however always been ready to stand up and respond keenly to the urgent needs of those in adversity. She took up without fears a series of sensitive cases proscribed by the authorities, that of Liu Ming (刘铭), a police officer wronged in Huainan, Anhui for divulging state secret; or the case of Hu Ziyou (胡自由) in the Qiandongnan Miao and Dong Autonomous Prefecture on religious freedom.

When Beijing lawyer Wang Yu was taken on 9 July 2015 for allegedly having committed state-security-related crimes and with many others summoned and detained thereafter, the legal community in the country was in a state of severity. However lawyer Li did not back off. Instead she stepped forward for Wang as the latter was charged with “subverting state power”. In face of the 709 Crackdown, Li has been working courageously and unswervingly with a group of distinguished lawyers in defending the rule of law and human rights in China. Since she is more senior in age, she always consciously stays in the front to render protection for the younger lawyers. Her generosity has earned her the name “big sister” in the rights lawyers circle. With her rigorous struggles against the police’ many unlawful acts in the 709 cases, Li has made herself the authorities’ target of control and surveillance.

The Shenyang Public Security Bureau has for long detested Li and made various attempts to revenge her as she used to report the police’s malpractices. We believe the Shenyang police are making use of the need for stability for the 19th Party Congress as a pretext to arrest Li. It is apparent to us that both power abuses and malfeasances form part of the case.

Lawyer Li Yuhan has rendered herself a detainee by upholding her conscience in the times of horror. We should by no means let she who collects firewood for the others suffer in the cold. We lawyers in China will not leave her alone and we will continue to provide her with our legal, moral and financial support until the case is resolved.

We deeply understand that as a veteran lawyer in practice, Li always knows the limits for her conduct. It is impossible for her to have committed any illegal act. It has been well known that “picking quarrels and provoking trouble” is a handy crime used to suppress civil rights. Although criminal detention has been applied on Li, the Shenyang police have however unlawfully refused to provide any formal notification to her family. We hence firmly believe that what has happened to Li is the revenge the Shenyang authorities are seeking against her.

It is particularly worrying for us to know that the Shenyang police have been notorious for their use of torture against human rights defenders and dissidents, as fully exemplified in the cases of Yu Ming (于溟), Jiang Lijun (姜力均) and the 709 Crackdown. For her age and her health conditions, we are gravely apprehensive if lawyer Li Yuhan could stand any torture by the police.

We hence call on the Shenyang police to abide by the law, be humane and stop any torture in process.

We solemnly state the following:

1. That the Shenyang police should respect the law and release lawyer Li Yuhan without any further delay;
2. That while in detention, the rights of lawyer Li Yanghan should be fully observed, especially with regard to her health conditions;
3. That legal actions should be taken against the perpetrators and have their names publicised.

1.    Wang Yu, Beijing lawyer (王宇)
2.    Sui Muqing, Guangdong lawyer (隋牧青)
3.    Wen Donghai, Hunan lawyer (文东海)
4.    Zhu Shengwu, Shandong lawyer (祝圣武)
5.    Lin Qilei, Beijing lawyer (蔺其磊)
6.    Zou Lihui, Fujian lawyer (邹丽惠)
7.    Tang Jitian, formerly Beijing lawyer (唐吉田)
8.    Liu Shihui, formerly Guangdong lawyer (刘士辉)
9.    Yu Wensheng, Beijing lawyer (余文生)
10.    Liu Zhengqing, Guangdong lawyer (刘正清)
11.    Qin Chenshou, Guangxi lawyer (覃臣寿)
12.    Dong Qianyong, Beijing lawyer (董前勇)
13.    Li Fangping, Beijing lawyer (李方平)
14.    Liu Shuqing, formerly Shandong lawyer (刘书庆)
15.    Wu Kuiming, Guangdong lawyer  (吴魁明)
16.    Li Baiguan, Beijing lawyer  (李柏光)
17.    Long Lin, Hunan lawyer  (龙霖)
18.    Ren Quanniu, Henan lawyer  (任全牛)
19.    Ding Jiaxi, formerly Beijing lawyer (丁家喜)
20.    Ge Wenxiu, Guangdong lawyer (葛文秀)
21.    Li Dawei, legal professional in Gansu  (李大伟)
22.    Wang Zongyue, Guizhou lawyer (王宗跃)
23.    He Wei, Chongqing lawyer (何伟)
24.    Liu Chun, Beijing lawyer (刘春)
25.    Huang Hanzhong, Beijing lawyer (黄汉中)
26.    Chen Yixuan, Hunan lawyer (陈以轩)
27.    Xie Yanyi, Beijing lawyer (谢燕益)
28.    Lu Tingge, Hebei lawyer (卢廷阁)
29.    Zheng Keke, Hubei lawyer (张科科)
30.    Zhang Zhongshi, Hunan lawyer (张重实)
31.    Chang Baoyang, Henan lawyer (常伯阳)
32.    Wang Qiushi, Heilongjiang lawyer (王秋实)
33.    Wang Qingpeng, Hebei lawyer (王清鹏)
34.    Chen Jiangan, Beijing lawyer (陈建刚)
35.    Shu Xianxin, Shandong lawyer  (舒向新)
36.    Lv Fangzhi, Hunan lawyer (吕方芝)
37.    Chen Jinxue, Guangdong lawyer (陈进学)
38.    Zhang Lei, Beijing lawyer (张磊)
39.    Li Weida, Hebei lawyer (李威达)
40.    Zhong Jinhua, Shanghai lawyer (钟锦化)
41.    Qu Yuan, Sichuan lawyer (瞿远)
42.    Tong Chaoping, formerly Beijing lawyer (童朝平)
43.    Yu Quan, Sichuan lawyer (于全)
44.    Li Yongheng, Shandong lawyer (李永恒)
45.    Chen Jinhua, Hunan lawyer  (陈金华)
46.    Luo Qian,  legal professional in Hunan (罗茜)
47.    Li Jinxing, Shandong lawyer (李金星)
48.    Zeng Yi, Yunan lawyer (曾义)
49.    Meng Meng, Henan lawyer (孟猛)
50.    Xu Hongwei, Shandong lawyer  (徐红卫)
51.    Qin Yongpei, Guangxi lawyer  (覃永沛)
52.    Wang Zhenjiang, Shandong lawyer (王振江)
53.    Wen Haibao, formerly Beijing lawyer (温海波)
54.    Teng Biao, formerly Beijing lawyer (滕彪)
55.    Liu Wei, formerly Beijing lawyer (刘巍)
56.    Jiang Yuanmin, Guangdong lawyer  (蒋援民)
57.    Xu Guijuan, Shandong lawyer  (许桂娟)
58.    Zheng Enchong, formerly Shanghai lawyer (郑恩宠)
59.    Deng Linhua, Hunan lawyer (邓林华)
60.    Xiao Yunyang, Guizhou lawyer  (萧云阳)
61.    Liang Xiaojun, Beijing lawyer  (梁小军)
62.    Ji Zhongjiu, Zhejiang lawyer  (纪中久)
63.    Wang Lei, Henan lawyer  (王磊)
64.    Sun Jiang, Hunan lawyer  (孙强)
65.    Cheng Weishan, formerly Jiangsu lawyer (程为善)
66.    Ma Wei, Tianjin lawyer (马  卫)
67.    Xue Rongmin, Shanghai lawyer  (薛荣民)
68.    Fan Biaowen, Guangdong lawyer  (范标文)
69.    Hu Linzheng, Hunan lawyer  (胡林政)
70.    Cheng Hai, Beijing lawyer  (程海)
71.    Wang Qiaoling, family of victim in 709 Crackdown (王峭岭)
72.    Li Wenzu, family of victim in 709 Crackdown (李文足)
73.    Li Wei, Beijing citizen (李 蔚)
74.    Jin Bianling, family of victim in 709 Crackdown  (金变玲)
75.    Chen Guijiu, family of victim in 709 Crackdown709 (陈桂秋)
76.    Yuan Shanshan, family of victim in 709 Crackdown (原珊珊)
77.    Bai Hua, US citizen (白桦)
78.    Su Yutong, journalist in Germany (苏雨桐)
79.    Wang Yanfang, wife of Tang Jingling (汪艳芳)
80.    Fan Lili, family of victim in 709 Crackdown (樊丽丽)
81.    Wang Quanxiu, family of victim in 709 Crackdown (王全秀)
82.    Zhang Zemin, Sichuan citizen (张泽民)
83.    Wang Lihong, family of prisoner of conscience (王荔蕻)
84.    Zhuang Lei, Fuzhou citizen (庄磊)
85.    Wang Zhongxia, US freedom defender (王仲夏)