China: Solidarity with Huang Xueqin and Wang Jianbing against the CCP’s suppression of the Me2 movement

China Worker 24 September 2023

Huang Xueqin, an independent investigative journalist and in-depth reporter on the #Metoo movement, and Wang Jianbing, a Guangzhou occupational disease rights advocate, were charged with "inciting subversion of state power." The first trial was held on the second anniversary of their arrest.

The Guangzhou Municipal Procuratorate accused Huang Xueqin of "since 2019, he has repeatedly published inflammatory articles and remarks that distorted and attacked the Chinese government on the Internet and in social groups, and promoted ideas that subvert state power. From May 2020 to February 2021, he was subjected to "overseas harassment" Organize personnel to gather and participate in online training on "non-violent movements." Such accusations about "foreign forces" have increasingly been seen to be fabricated. During the anti-clearance protests in December last year, officials accused protesters of being Foreign forces are strongly resented by the masses.

The crime of "inciting subversion" is often used by the Chinese authorities to suppress dissidents, and can be punished by a prison sentence of up to five years; "ringleaders or serious crimes" can be punished by a prison sentence of more than five years. In the past, this crime was aimed at actions that strongly opposed the legitimacy of the government. In recent years, it has become an "unfounded" crime like the crime of picking quarrels and provoking trouble.

Huang Xueqin is a media worker and one of the founders of the #me2 movement. She once published the "Investigation Report on Sexual Harassment of Female Journalists in the Workplace in China", which stated that more than 80% of female journalists in China have been sexually harassed, which aroused public concern. But the real reason why she was targeted by the regime was probably because she conducted interviews during the Hong Kong pro-democracy demonstrations in 2019 and published articles online to record the demonstrations. She was accused of organizing and setting up online project training courses to "use content such as major events at home and abroad, social movements, etc. to incite participants' dissatisfaction with the Chinese regime."

On the day of the trial, police were dispatched to guard the area near the Guangzhou Court. A large number of plainclothes officers guarded the intersections, and special police vehicles patrolled around the court to question and persuade people who tried to approach the court. The CCP fears the #Metoo movement’s potential to turn into a mass movement in the streets and become a platform for expressing social injustice. During the trial of Xianzi's sexual assault case against Zhu Jun in December 2021, there were once more than a hundred young people outside the Beijing court in support. They held signs and gave speeches to complain about injustice.

A member of the "Snow Cake Concern Group" that supports Huang Xueqin, Huang Xueqin was often interrogated suddenly in the middle of the night while in detention. Supporters fear that she was tortured in prison and that her physical pathology has worsened and may be accompanied by severe mental damage. Reports indicate that her sleep was often interrupted as she was interrogated in the middle of the night.

Last year, the concern group stated that at least more than 70 friends or house party attendees of Huang Xueqin and Wang Jianbing were summoned and interrogated and intimidated for more than 24 hours. Some were even forced to sign false confessions fabricated by the police and asked to identify the two. People have participated in so-called training activities to "subvert state power."

Huang Xueqin and Wang Jianbing were arrested in Shenzhen and Guangzhou in September 2021. Huang was preparing to study at the University of Sussex in the UK, but was unexpectedly "disappeared" on the way to the airport. The University of Sussex was also questioned about its silence. According to the BBC, the school notified all students via email not to talk about Huang Xueqin. In order to attract funds from Chinese students, overseas universities often cooperate with the CCP and become accomplices of the authoritarian regime in suppressing freedom of speech.

Wang Jianbing was not allowed to see his attorney until he was detained and lost contact for nearly 200 days. He was held in solitary confinement for as many as five months. The specific location of his detention is unknown so far. Wang Jianbing once told his lawyer that he suffered from depression while being held in solitary confinement.

Many Chinese feminists have become increasingly democratic and class-conscious, and have begun to realize that the entire system needs radical changes, making the Chinese Communist regime afraid that they will become the center of collective resistance in the future. The Chinese Communist regime is facing a severe economic crisis, and the anti-clearance protests last December have sounded a critical alarm for the authorities, so they must intensify their crackdown. Recently, the CCP has vigorously used the Fukushima nuclear wastewater incident to incite anti-Japanese nationalism, and promoted the "Public Security Management Punishment Law" claiming to crack down on behavior that "hurts national sentiments", all in order to create an atmosphere of fear that will obey the regime.

But nationalist shifts and police repression cannot suppress social discontent indefinitely. The public's anger is growing day by day, as is the widespread sympathy and support for victims of the system such as Huang Xueqin and Wang Jianbing.


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