Photo: Billion Rising activists around the world continue to demand the release of our activist feminist sisters from China Li Tingting, Zheng Churan, Wei Tingting, Wang Man and Wu Rongrung who were arrested for their work to create awareness and education on violence against women and girls issues.

This is an update from an activist sister on the ground:

“The women are still in criminal detention. In China the maximum duration is thirty days. During this period, police and people from the security department will fetch the detainees for interrogation at intervals, and question them about some specific activities they have planned and organized before. This is for collective evidence, for a formal arrest and prosecution. According to the lawyers, the detention itself is not within due process of the law. The cause for detaining them is “creating disturbances”, but they (we) had not even implemented their (our) action plans before the detention. And all the similar activities we had done before did not break any single article of Chinese law. All the five girls are full time grassroots NGO staff. One of the organisations they work for is the main target of this crackdown and whose office was broken into and searched, and where all their archives were carried off on March 25th, which again happened at midnight.

The girls are basically well personally but we haven’t had any more information about Zheng Churan for two weeks now because her lawyer suddenly left China for another case. The new lawyer is coming to take his place. Policemen have continued to disturb the volunteers nationwide who participated in the former activities and are forcing then to give evidence (evidence for no crime). Some important activists working in sister organizations are now going into exile and are leaving China. They are not afraid of being arrested but they don’t want to give “evidence” to help police frame the five women. But all the support internationally does help.”

One Billion Rising activists from all over the world continue to condemn the detaining of our five young activist feminist sisters from China, who now face prosecution no later than April 8th under illegal and inhumane procedures, and are demanding their immediate release.

We call on China to uphold the outcomes of the Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action, which was created in China at the historic international conference in 1995. As hosts of the conference, they, beyond all doubt and measure, are ethically mandated to deliver on the promises and commitment to advance women’s rights- including women’s political and human rights, and the basic liberties of self, social and political expressions. They are ethically bound to adhere to the agreements made at the summit twenty years ago. It is such an expression of hypocrisy to purport to advocate for women’s rights when they have exerted repressive, inhumane and illegal measures towards Li Tingting, Zheng Churan, Wei Tingting, Wang Man and Wu Rongrung.

We demand their immediate and unconditional release!

We demand that the Chinese government stop the brutal political repression of their women’s human rights defenders!

Photo: Free the Five, by Badiucao for CDT巴丢草-free-the-five/We call on everyone to make their voices heard for justice for these women, and protest outside the Chinese embassies around the world before, leading up to and on April 8th  the day they are likely to be prosecuted. We ask activists and all members of civil society to demand their release, to keep up the pressure, and to highlight in their local and national media the real situation and expose the Chinese government for being repressive, brutal and hypocritical, and who do not respect human rights and national agreements that bind them to the world as a global nation.

We stand in solidarity alongside our sisters in China. We RISE against the political repression they are experiencing and the violation of their human rights. As a global community, we RISE for Justice for them and we collectively show our indignation at the suppression and curtailment of the rights of women human rights defenders who have committed their lives to ending all forms of violence against women and girls. They are the future of China. We must keep RISING to ensure their futures are not taken away from them.

In Solidarity,
Tanya Anastasiadis (United Kingdom/Canada)
Abha Bhaiya (India)
Rada Boric (Croatia)
Marsha Pamela Calderon (Guatemala)
Anne Christine d’Adesky (Haiti)
Eve Ensler (United States)
Lynne Franks (United Kingdom)
Khushi Kabir (Bangladesh)
Dianne Madray (Guyana)
Marya Meyer (United States)
Andres Naime (Mexico)
Mily Trevino Saucedo (United States)
Aimee Sissoho (The Gambia)
Susan Celia Swan (United States)
Isatou Touray (The Gambia)
Monique Wilson (The Philippines)