International

China dissident sentenced to 12 years in prison for leaking state secrets

Chinese dissident Huang Qi has been sentenced to 12 years in prison on the charge of leaking secrets to a foreign entity, more than two years after his arrest, a court said on Monday.

A brief announcement on Monday on the website of the Mianyang Municipal People’s Intermediate Court in Huang’s native Sichuan province gave no details on the nature of the secrets Mr. Huang, 56, allegedly leaked or who the recipients were.

In 1998, Mr. Huang founded the 64 Tianwang Human Rights Centre and its accompanying website to chronicle the stories of people alleging abuses by authorities. Reporters Without Borders, which calls Huang a “cyberdissident,” has awarded him its Cyberfreedom Prize.

Since coming to power in 2012, Chinese President Xi Jinping has overseen tightening restrictions on civil society, jailing human rights activists as well as the lawyers who defend them.

Numerous Chinese dissidents have fallen gravely ill during their imprisonment. Nobel Peace laureate Liu Xiaobo was serving an 11-year sentence for “inciting subversion of state power” when he died of liver cancer two years ago.

Source: thehindu.com

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