China sheds rare light on fate of long-detained dissident

BEIJING Tue Mar 6, 2012 5:52pm IST

Related Topics

BEIJING (Reuters) - An ethnic Mongolian rights activist who finished a 15-year jail term in 2010 is under effective house arrest, a senior Chinese law official said on Tuesday, offering rare comment on the fate of a key dissident released from formal custody.

Hada was tried in China's vast northern Inner Mongolia region in 1996 and sentenced to 15 years in jail for separatism and spying and supporting the Southern Mongolian Democratic Alliance, which sought greater rights for ethnic Mongolians.

But after completing his jail sentence, he had to serve a separate sentence, Tao Jian, the deputy Communist Party boss of Inner Mongolia's law and order committee, said on the sidelines of China's on-going meeting of parliament.

"He was released in December 2010. But is he still serving out his four years of deprivation of political rights," Tao said, in the first public remarks on the case in years.

"During this time, in accordance with the law, certain of his activities have been limited. But Hada is in a safe, healthy and guaranteed environment. That's all I have to say."

Chinese authorities often place released political prisoners under house arrest or otherwise restrict their movements and contact with the outside world. Officials, though, rarely give details of individual cases.

Hada's wife Xinna, who has denied her husband was a separatist, and son Uiles were detained in the run-up to his release and rights groups believe they are also still being held. Many Chinese Mongolians go by only one name.

Tao would not comment on Xinna's fate, nor say where her and her husband were being held.

Ethnic Mongolians, who make up less than 20 percent of the roughly 24 million population of Inner Mongolia, have long complained that traditional grazing lands have been ruined by mining and desertification, and that the government has marginalized their culture and language.

Inner Mongolia was rocked by protests in May last year over the death of an ethnic Mongolian herder who was hit by a truck after taking part in protests against pollution caused by a coal mine.

(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Ed Lane)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Ukraine Crisis

Reuters Showcase

Day of Mourning

Day of Mourning

Malaysia mourns as bodies of MH17 victims finally come home.  Full Article 

Gaza Crisis

Gaza Crisis

Gunmen execute 18 alleged collaborators in Gaza; Israel launches air strikes.  Full Article 

Rising Toll

Rising Toll

Documented death toll in syria war at least 191,369 through April 2014 - U.N.  Full Article 

Combating Ebola

Combating Ebola

WHO says drawing up 6-9 month strategy to combat Ebola.  Full Article 

Tensions Ease

Tensions Ease

National Guard begins pullout from riot-weary Ferguson, Missouri.  Full Article 

Nervous  Calm

Nervous Calm

Amid outward calm, climate of fear cements Thai military rule.  Full Article 

Remaining Hostages

Remaining Hostages

Journalist Foley's parents, after call with pope, call for prayer and action.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage