torsdag 9. desember 2021

Jailed Chinese citizen journalist, disappeared rights lawyer win Lin Zhao award

Jailed citizen journalist Zhang Zhan and disappeared rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng have won the Lin Zhao Freedom Award for their work promoting Chinese civil society and advancing the rule of law. The U.S.-based Christian rights group ChinaAid said it had presented Gao's award to his U.S.-based wife Geng He, while China Change founder Chen Yaxue accepted Zhang's award, which honors a Mao-era dissident executed by the Chinese government.

"ChinaAid's Selection Committee unanimously voted to honor Ms. Zhang, a Christian, a lawyer, and a fearless, citizen journalist," the group said in a statement announcing the award in May.

Lawyer-turned-journalist Zhang travelled to Wuhan and "courageously investigated the area ... demonstrat[ing] a dedication to the victims of the COVID-19 that touched the world, and a spirit of fearless sacrifice," the group said. The award comes amid growing fear that Zhang is close to death in prison after months of intermittent hunger striking to protest her innocence.n"She is dying behind bars in the Shanghai Women's Prison," Cao told the reception where the awards were presented.