Target: President of China, Xi Jinping
Goal: Drop the charges against five imprisoned women’s rights activists.
Five women, often referred to as the “Beijing Five,” were imprisoned for their women’s rights activism in China. The Chinese authorities claimed their crime was “picking quarrels,” which can land the women up to five years in prison. The women were planning to distribute stickers and leaflets highlighting sexual harassment when they were seized by the police.
The women have protested by wearing wedding gowns with fake blood smeared over them in order to advocate against domestic violence, and by occupying men’s restrooms to advocate for more women’s bathrooms. Although they are protesting, they have been described as always peaceful and non-violent. They also never spoke out specifically against the government or their policies, but rather sought to advocate for women’s rights and provide education on sensitive topics.
United States officials have taken notice, and Hillary Clinton was quoted saying “the detention of women’s rights activists in China must end. This is inexcusable.” Chinese officials replied to Clinton’s statement by saying that they will not tolerate illegal protests, and that “the West” is trying to infringe on their governance.
The women were being held inside the Haidian detention facility for three weeks with no formal charges against them. However, they have been released while the government still investigates their actions.They face charges of “gathering crowds to disrupt order in public places,” which will limit their communications with one another, restrict their movement, and make them subject to interrogation for 12 months.
Please support these women’s efforts in furthering women’s rights and help to ensure their safety and freedom of speech by demanding the dropping of these charges against them.
Dear President Xi Jinping,
The five women recently detained at the Haidian detention facility for advocating for women’s rights must have the charges against them dropped. The women were detained at the facility for three weeks with no formal charges filed. They have exhibited no violence or harm to others, and deserve to have these charges against them dropped. These young women are demanding rights but were not interfering with government policy.
I urge you to drop the charges against these women and to ensure their freedom to communicate with one another and peacefully advocate.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Andrew Ratto via Wikipedia Commons