Originally published by New York Times, 16 March 2010
HONG KONG — China’s foreign minister waded into the mystery over the disappearance more than a year ago of one of the country’s most prominent human rights lawyers, but his remarks on Tuesday shed little light on the lawyer’s fate.
At a Beijing news conference, Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said the lawyer, Gao Zhisheng, had been sentenced to prison for subversion. But Mr. Yang did not say whether he was referring to a new sentence or whether he was citing a suspended sentence that Mr. Gao had received in late 2006 after writing an open letter to President Hu Jintao alleging mistreatment of adherents of the banned Falun Gong movement.
In the 2006 case, Mr. Gao was quickly released after he made a confession. He later said he had been coerced into confessing by state security officials.Continue Reading →