Lee Ching-yu (李凈瑜), Taiwanese human rights activist Lee Ming-che’s (李明哲) wife, on Friday said she was being framed, after an allegedly misleading photograph surfaced online of her holding hands with a man who traveled to China with her.
Now back in Taiwan, she said through the Taiwan Association for Human Rights that the photograph, which shows her apparently holding hands with a member of the delegation that accompanied her to China, shows the two strategizing how to save her husband.
The man in the photo is Hsiao I-ming (蕭逸民), head of the Appeals Center of the Taiwan-based Judicial Reform Foundation, who along with Lu Pei-ling (呂培苓) and former Democratic Progressive Party legislator Wang Li-ping (王麗萍) accompanied Lee Ching-yu to China for Lee Ming-che’s trial.
The delegation members speculated that the photo was likely taken by a member of the Chinese security detail that surveilled them during their stay in China.
They said that the person who took the photograph purposely chose one where an official from China’s Taiwan Affairs Office was not present to make it appear as though the two were sharing an intimate moment.
Lee Ching-yu leaned in to talk to Hsiao because she did not want the Chinese officials following them to overhear, they said.
The delegation said that the Chinese Public Security Bureau was trying to ruin Lee Ching-yu’s reputation via an anonymously posted photo on Sina Weibo, one of China’s dominant social media platforms.
This photo could also be used to provoke an emotional response from Lee Ming-che, it added.
The delegation asked Chinese authorities to punish the person responsible for the photo and issue an apology.
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