Pu Wenqing (蒲文清), mother of detained Sichuan rights activist Huang Qi (黄琦), recently sent an appeal to request the Central Inspection Team to instruct relevant authorities in Sichuan Province and Mianyang Municipality to openly and fairly handle Huang Qi’s case in accordance with the law, and immediately release Huang Qi, who is seriously ill, so that he may receive proper medical treatment. At the same time, Pu also sent an “Application for Release on Bail” to the Mianyang Intermediate People’s Court and its judge Zhou Dongqing.
Pu Wenqing stated in the appeal letter that Huang Qi was secretly taken by police from the Mianyang Municipal Public Security Bureau on the night of November 28, 2016, and has been held for more than 500 days at the Mianyang Municipal Detention Center on suspicion of “illegally providing state secrets abroad.” She points out that the alleged secret document that he disclosed, “A Report on the Handling of Chen Tianmao's Appeals and Related Issues by the Political and Legal Committee of Youxian District of Mianyang Municipality”—which disclosure was used by the authorities as the basis of their accusation—was not an official CPC, or “red-letterheaded,” document, nor did it bear a “secrets” stamp or even an official seal.
Huang Qi suffers from numerous serious ailments including swelling in the brain (cerebral edema), brain atrophy, heart disease, and emphysema. Currently he suffers from systemic edema, increased creatinine levels, degraded renal function, and overall worsening health. He has lost more than 20 pounds since he was first detained. Pu Wenqing is worried that the authorities will hold Huang Qi indefinitely as they cannot find any evidence against him.
Pu Wenqing said to Human Rights in China: First, my son is not guilty and I hope Huang Qi will come home soon. Second, Huang Qi’s helping of vulnerable groups and upholding of justice for individuals are in accordance with the rights granted to citizens by their country. The case against Huang Qi, based on trumped-up charges, is retaliation against him perpetrated by the local authorities. Third, Huang Qi’s physical condition is worrying; I am concerned that Huang Qi will die in prison.
Background on Huang Qi
Huang Qi is a veteran rights defender active online in China to promote information access by citizens and official accountability, including founding the Tianwang Missing Persons (天网寻人) website to help people find missing relatives, and the 64 Tianwang website (http://www.64tianwang.com) to provide rights defense related information and assistance to vulnerable groups. Following the Sichuan earthquake, he published an investigative report exposing the “tofu” school buildings that collapsed during the earthquake, which killed thousands. He has previously been imprisoned twice, serving eight years in total. As a result of beatings and other abuses he suffered during his previous imprisonment, Huang Qi developed accumulation of fluid in the brain, rheumatic heart disease, and other ailments. In 2010, Huang Qi was also diagnosed with chronic renal failure and other conditions, requiring large quantities of medication daily.