Chen Guangcheng, a blind Chinese man who taught himself law, has been jailed by the local government after he filed a class action lawsuit against the government, claiming the local government forced peasants to have late term abortions or be sterilized. The allegations were investigated by an international body and found to have merit. So the local government put him basically under house arrest, came up with spurious claims against him, and are currently putting him on trial. His lawyer has been beaten, his car pushed into a ditch and onto it's hood by local police (caught on videotape), and he has received death threats, at least one of which he tape recorded.
More justice from a great ally. Abuses like these should not be tolerated. Make China's PNTR status contigent upon their not violating human rights and illegally imprisoning citizens who have done nothing illegal. The officials in the town and in Beijing need to be punished, not Mr. Chen.
"I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."
The blind person was not driving the car, but his legal adviser.
I would have to agree though that this is a setback for reformists within China, and I have very little hope that he will be released unless an enormous amount of International pressure is put onto China, and even then Beijing might not listen. I wish the best for this poor blind man.