A Chinese cyber-dissident who criticized the government over human rights abuses ahead of the Beijing Olympic Games has been detained on suspicion of subverting state power, his wife said yesterday.
Wang Dejia (
"They said his crime was incitement to subvert state power," said Wen, who has been barred from seeing her husband since his arrest.
She said his arrest was linked to articles he had written and posted on banned overseas Web sites in which he criticized China's human rights record, including the jailings of many writers.
In recent months, Wang also gave an interview to the Epoch Times, a media group backed by the banned Falun Gong, in which he claimed the Olympics would exacerbate the sufferings of Chinese people and leave them "living like dogs and pigs."
Wang blamed the "autocratic nation" for destroying ordinary people's homes in mass demolitions to build grandiose Olympic venues, and criticized China's intensified crackdown on dissidents.
"I am very worried about him and feel really pained," his wife said. "This regime, if you oppose it, it will only oppress you."
His wife said his arrest could also be connected with his meeting with US consulate representatives in October to discuss human rights.
A US embassy spokesman said he did not know if the meeting took place, and was looking into Wang's case.
Police in Guangxi refused to comment on the case.
Paris-based Reporters Without Borders said it was concerned to see further evidence of a crackdown linked to the Games.
"Eight months before the Beijing Olympic Games, it is very worrying to learn of the arrest of another writer who had criticized the way the Games are being organized," the group said in a statement.
Despite China's pledge to ease curbs on media and individual freedoms ahead of the 2008 Olympics, human and media rights groups say Beijing's leaders are continuing to tighten a crackdown on dissent amid increasing social unrest.
In an August report, Reporters Without Borders said at least 30 journalists and 50 cyber-dissidents were being detained in China for work that had angered authorities.
The group ranks China 163rd out of 167 nations on its global press freedom index.
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