Germany´s Deputy Chancellor and Economy Minister Gabriel
has just concluded his visit in Beijing.
He had previously said he would meet Chinese dissidents, and
he believed that European politicians had an obligation to show
support for human rights activists.
However, Beijing security department had blocked Gabriel´s
meeting with human rights attorney Mo Shaoping.
On April 23, Gabriel told media that he had frequently visited
China and always met with members of civil society.
However, he regretted that he failed to meet the prominent
human rights lawyer Mo Shaoping this time, and did not
provide much detail.
Mo Shaoping told NTD that the German Embassy had informed
him at 9 am, April 22, of a meeting with Mr. Gabriel that
afternoon at 5.
Around 11:00, the police came to his firm telling him that
he had been forbidden to meet Mr. Gabriel.
Mo Shaoping, Beijing human rights lawyer: “There is no
specific reason. But they mentioned ‘You had just met German
Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier last week.
Now you are going to meet another German Minister again,
the leader does not see it as appropriate and is very unhappy
about it. You can´t go.’ “
Finally, Mo Shaoping had his assistant tell the embassy the
reason why he can´t go. They felt very sorry and puzzled.
Mo Shaoping had represented the imprisoned Chinese
human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng.
Mo has repeatedly been forbidden from meeting authorities
and politicians from Europe and the United States.
In February 2012, police had blocked attorney Mo from
meeting German leader Angela Merkel.
Beijing constitutional scholar Chen Yongmiao believes that
the police intervention in meetings between the dissidents and
foreign dignitaries is mainly for political concern.
Chen Yongmiao, Beijing constitutional scholar: “For one,
the regime fears the meeting of foreign dignitaries might
enhance the dissident´s influence which will be hard to control.
Two, it fears the dissidents might expose the shady domestic
politics, which can be embarrassing."
In recent months, particularly since activist Cao Shunli died
from torture, the Communist regime´s restriction on dissidents
is known to be strengthened.
Gabriel had previously said he would meet Chinese dissidents,
and he believed it is European politicians´ duty to meet them
and listen to their criticisms.
Mr. Gabriel raised the issue of human rights and the rule of
law during his talks with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.
The Chinese foreign ministry did not respond to the
international media request for comment.
German politicians have repeatedly raised Chinese human
In Xi Jinping´s visit to Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel
clearly pointed out the issue of freedom of speech during the
press conference, while German President Gauck directly
proposed to Xi Jinping his trip to China will be conditional
on meeting with Chinese critics of government.
A week ago, Mo Shaoping had been able to meet German
Foreign Minister Steinmeier when he was in China.
The police said the meeting was a mistake caused by wrong
Mo Shaoping: “China has laws, but falls short on the rule of law.
The governance is by politics, not by law.
There is constitution, but the governance does not abide by
Is there any progress in the rule of law? I think so.
There is legislation so there is law to follow,
but the regime does not follow it. “
The prominent New Citizen Movement case was considered
a typical situation where laws are obviously ignored.
Participants of the movement such as Xu Zhiyong demanded
official property declaration and equal rights to education,
but was sentenced to four years in jail for the crime
a crowd to disturb order at public places.
Mo Shaoping said that in his meeting with Steinmeier, he had
mentioned the anti-corruption campaign as an arbitrary decision,
and not under the framework of the rule of law.
He had also pointed out that Internet censorship is getting serious.
Mo Shaoping: “Freedom of speech is a basic right of a citizen
and a basic principle of the law, but is falling behind in China.
People like Xu Zhiyong demanding officials´ property
declaration are only arrested, beaten, and sentenced."
Gabriel ended his two-day visit to China on the evening of 23.
His 50 member delegation of business officials hoped to
improve bilateral trade relations and to reduce the obstacles
German companies would encounter in the Chinese market.
Interview & Edit/Li Yun Post-Production/Li Yong