onsdag 18. august 2021

Imprisoned Chinese citizen journalist not well, lawyer says

A Chinese citizen journalist serving a four-year sentence after reporting on the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic in the city of Wuhan is in ill health after staging a long-running hunger strike, according to a lawyer who spoke with her family.

Zhang Zhan was hospitalized on July 31 and now weighs less than 40 kilograms (90 pounds), according to a message sent by Zhang Zhan’s mother to a group on Chinese social media. Authorities notified the family that she was in poor health and told them to come to the prison, said Peng Yonghe, a lawyer who spoke with Zhang’s mother about the visit. Her parents and brother went to Shanghai on August 2 but were only permitted to speak with her over the phone. “We just hope that she can get out of jail, because her hunger strike is really worrying,” said Peng.

Hospitals in Chinese prisons under generally poorly equipped, said Jane Wang, an activist with Humanitarian China, a U.S.-based group founded by Chinese dissidents. Wang helped share Zhang mother’s message more widely.