Chinese writer released, remains under tight surveillance
According to PEN's information, Dr. Jiao Guobiao was arrested on 12 September 2012 on charges of "suspicion of inciting subversion of state power" following the publication of an article on the Chinese-language web site Boxun.com on 11 September 2012 which criticised the Chinese government's policies, including the territorial dispute with Japan over the Daioyu Islands. Dr Jiao had been placed under strict house arrest and surveillance since 6 September 2012, when he was banned from travelling to the 78th PEN International Congress in Gyeongju, South Korea, at which he was registered to attend. On 12 September 2012 PEN International sent a letter to the Chinese authorities protesting the travel ban.
Dr. Jiao Guobiao is based in Beijing and is a former associate professor at Beijing University's College of Journalism and Communications. He is a prominent journalist who worked for the Chinese Cultural Newspaper from 1996-2001, and has published widely on the issues of press freedom and human rights in China. He is internationally known for his journalistic writings and commentaries, and from 1998-2006 published seven major collections, many of which have been translated into English and Japanese. He was suspended from his teaching duties in March 2005 following the online publication of his critical article entitled "Denouncing the Central Propaganda Department", published in March 2004, which promoted press freedom. He has since been subject to heavy surveillance and harassment, and left China for Germany in November 2006, fearing arrest. In February 2008 he was invited to be Writer in Residence on the Norwich City of Refuge Programme. He returned to China at the end of the residency.
For more on Jiao's story and the International Cities of Refuge Network (ICORN) click here.
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* Welcoming the release of writer and ICPC member Dr Jiao Guobiao, and calling for all remaining restrictions against him to be lifted;
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