BEIJING – China's last known prisoner held in relation to the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests will reportedly be released Saturday, but he will face freedom a frail and mentally ill man, a rights group and a fellow former inmate said. Miao Deshun's expected release follows an 11-month sentence reduction, according to the Dui Hua Foundation, a San Francisco-based group that advocates for the rights of political prisoners in China. The 51-year-old former factory worker is severely ill after spending more than half his life behind bars, said Dui Hua's executive director, John Kamm. Tanks and troops converged in Beijing to quash pro-democracy protests on the night of June 3-4, 1989, killing hundreds, possibly thousands, of people. Authorities later jailed more than 1,600 people around the country for crimes linked to the demonstrations.
Beijing, China - She appeared out of the black of an early spring night, wearing a biker jacket and a slicked-back ponytail. One of Beijing's biggest commercial areas was only a block away, but instead she turned down a narrow alleyway and into a small restaurant. She strode past the diners, the cash register too, and pushed open a plywood door. Inside was a small circular table surrounded by low orange stools, sandwiched in a room containing a row of industrial kitchen sinks and a drying rack for dishes. She sat down, opened her laptop and waited. It was 7:30pm on a Monday. The Narcotics Anonymous (NA) meeting would start once more people showed up. Only two others did, ultimately.
BEIJING/SHENYANG, CHINA – Friends of the dissident who would become China's first Nobel Peace Prize laureate had for decades urged him to leave the country that sent him to prison time and again. When Liu had a chance to seek asylum abroad after the 1989 Tiananmen prodemocracy protests, he declined. Urged again in the 2000s to leave after needling the government with his essays, he again said no. He might be safer overseas, Liu told friends, but he would sacrifice the moral authority of a campaigner who persisted under authoritarian Communist Party rule. Then in March, one development finally broke the resolve of China's most famous political prisoner: his wife's declining health.
The welcome wagon that met Cheng Youze when he was released from Jincheng prison in Shanxi, China on May 23 was like a scene out of a Hong Kong blockbuster movie. SEE ALSO: Woman offers herself as'human target' to raise funds for sister's cancer treatment According to Chinese news reports, Cheng, who served a three-year sentence for illegal gambling operations, swaggered out of jail where more than 100 members from his gang turned up to celebrate his freedom in Hummers, Land Rovers and Mercedes-Benz cars. On top of the huge turnout, the members also set off firecrackers as part of the dramatic celebrations. All these took place right outside of the prison facility under the watchful eyes of the local authorities. After the grand affair, Cheng and his men adjourned to a five-star hotel to feast on a banquet for 100 tables.