Senators Call on Chinese President to Release Gao Zhisheng
May 19, 2009
MEDIA ADVISORY, (christiansunite.com) -- On May 14, the 99th day since Chinese Christian human rights attorney Gao Zhisheng's kidnapping by government officials, four U.S. Senators issued a letter to Chinese President Hu Jintao calling for the Chinese government to release Gao. The four signatories are: Senators Bryon Dorgan (D-ND and Chairman of the Congressional - Executive Commission on China), Russ Feingold (D-WI), Chris Dodd (D-CT) and Sam Brownback (R-KS). The following is the full text of the Senators' letter to President Hu Jintao:
Dear President Hu:
We are writing to express our deep concern over the disappearance of prominent lawyer and human rights advocate, Gao Zhisheng. Tomorrow will mark the 100th day in which Mr. Gao has not been seen or heard from. We fear that Mr. Gao's life may be in grave danger, given Mr. Gao's past treatment at the hands of public security officers (and others working under their direction).
Mr. Gao, voted "one of China's top ten lawyers" in 2001 by a Chinese Ministry of Justice publication, has represented numerous civil society figures, religious leaders and writers. In September 2007, Mr. Gao sent an open letter to the U.S. Congress alleging widespread human rights abuses in China. Afterwards, public security officers abducted him and held him for over 50 days, during which time he was repeatedly tortured. He was told that he would be killed if he told anyone about what happened. Mr. Gao was last seen on February 4, 2009 at a relative's home, where more than 10 public security officers and others forcibly removed him from bed, and whisked him away to an unknown location. Mr. Gao's whereabouts are still unknown.
Mr. Gao's disappearance appears to be a violation of both Chinese and international law. We urge your government to inform the concerned public of his whereabouts, to guarantee Mr. Gao's right to be free from arbitrary detention, and to secure his release.
Byron L. Dorgan Christopher J. Dodd
Russell D. Feingold
Visit www.FreeGao.com to advocate for Gao Zhisheng's release: sign the petition; view the video; send e-mails to Chinese officials and find out more information about Gao Zhisheng.