Target: Government of Ankang City, administrators of Zengjia Township
Goal: Hold community members and local officials responsible for the illegal forced abortion of Feng Jianmei and Deng Jiyuan’s seven-month-old unborn child.
June 1st, 2012 marks the worst day of Feng Jianmei’s life. Feng, a twenty-two-year-old Chinese woman who was seven months pregnant was illegally arrested and forced to undergo an abortion by local government officials in her hometown. For weeks afterward, her family was assaulted by her community and local authorities. Since the end of June, Feng’s husband Deng Jiyuan has gone missing—it is not known if he was arrested or is in hiding. Those responsible for these terrible events must be punished by the local government in Feng’s village.
China’s one-child law has its exceptions; for example, couples can pay a fine to have a second child. Feng and her husband were finalizing their application for a birth permit prior to the abortion, but could not pay the penalty fine of $6,300. That’s when Feng was illegally taken into custody and an abortion was immediately performed. Deng and family members publicized details of Feng’s abortion through social media and local and international news channels but were met with anger by their village officials for exposing the abortion. Their community held a protest against them, calling Deng and his wife “traitors”. Protestors and officials assaulted the family and destroyed their property. Shortly afterward while Deng was en-route to Beijing to meet with a lawyer, he was attacked, and that’s when he disappeared.
This outrageous and horrifying event shows how far the Chinese government will go to uphold its one -child policy. Although authorities in Feng’s village apologized to the family and promised to investigate the case, it is most likely that they only did so because of the family’s actions to publicize the abortion. Those officials directly responsible for Feng’s abortion and harassment of the couple, as well as Deng’s disappearance should be punished. In addition, the government must grant protection to Feng Jianmei and her family and return her husband if he is being held in custody.
Dear Government Officials of Ankang City,
Feng Jianmei and Deng Jiyuan were unlawfully forced to abort their seven-month fetus at the end of May. Local authorities admitted that they illegally aborted the couple’s child but blamed the incident on “the poor planning” of the couple rather than their own poor judgment in deciding to abort the child. Feng Jianmei is still in the hospital recovering from her abortion and depression, and Deng Jiyuan has disappeared. The couple and family members have been repeatedly attacked by local authorities and community members who are angry that Feng and Deng have spoken out about their experience.
Although a brief investigation was launched, only a few individuals in the county family planning department were deemed responsible for the abortion. No one has arrested the community members who attacked the couple or their family, and no one has arrested the village officials who were responsible for overseeing the abortion decision. No one has compensated Feng and Deng for their loss, and Deng is still missing. Those officials directly responsible for Feng’s abortion and harassment of the couple, as well as Deng’s disappearance, should be punished. In addition, the government must grant protection to Feng Jianmei and her family and return her husband if he is being held in custody. These actions in no way compensate for the horrors the couple has endured, but will in a small way allow them receive the justice they deserve.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Google Images