Imprisoned for 4 years for filming the Covid-19 quarantine in Wuhan: the Chinese journalist will be released this Monday

Imprisoned for 4 years for filming the Covid-19 quarantine in Wuhan: the Chinese journalist will be released this Monday

Un militant pro-démocratie tient des pancartes avec la photo de la journaliste citoyenne chinoise Zhang Zhan devant le bureau de liaison du gouvernement central chinois, à Hong Kong, le 28 décembre 2020. EPA – MIGUEL CANDELA

Zhang Zhan, a Chinese citizen journalist who covered the early days of the Covid-19 outbreak in Wuhan, is due to be released this Monday, May 13, 2024. She was sentenced on May 28 ;December 2020 to 4 years in prison for "disturbing public order and dissemination of false information".

Chinese journalist Zhang Zhan, 40, should regain her freedom this Monday, May 13, 2024, after being imprisoned for 4 years for filming the Wuhan quarantine. She had posted more than a hundred videos concerning the virus on social networks. The former lawyer was arrested on May 14, 2020, reports Le Parisien .

The images were filmed in hospitals and crematoriums, where it documented the spread of Covid-19 and the pressure from the Chinese authorities on the families of the sick. Zhang Zhan was sentenced on December 28, 2020 to 4 years in prison for "disturbing public order and spreading false information". Since then, she has been detained in Shanghai Women's Prison.

In a video recorded in February 2020, Zhang said:"I can't think of anything to say except that the city is paralyzed because everything is under surveillance. This is what this country is facing today’hellip; They imprison us in the name of pandemic prevention and restrict our freedom. You should not talk to strangers, it’s dangerous. So, without the truth, everything is meaningless. If we fail to discover the truth, if we fail to break the monopoly of truth, the world means nothing to us." In another video, it showed a hospital full of patients on trolleys in the hallway.

Hunger strike

During the first months of her detention, she went on a hunger strike to protest her arrest. At her trial, she appeared very weakened and was in a wheelchair. In particular, it went from 75 kilos to 41 kilos. One of her former lawyers, who was disbarred, said she was force-fed through a tube and handcuffed so she could not remove it.

"Zhang Zhan courageously risked his life to inform his fellow citizens about the Covid-19 epidemic in Wuhan. She should never have been arrested, let alone sentenced to prison, we call on the international community to intensify pressure on the Chinese regime to restore her total freedom" , assures Cédric Alviani, director of the Asia-Pacific office of Reporter Without Borders (RSF) in a press release.

Indeed, according to The Guardian, apart from his total release , the journalist could be "sent somewhere to spend a 'softer' for three months". It is also possible that the forty-year-old will not be authorized to immediately contact her loved ones, the outside world and move freely.

Sarah Brooks, Amnesty International's China director, said: "She and her family must not be subjected to surveillance or harassment, and Chinese authorities must also ensure that there are no restrictions on his access to medical care following his traumatic ordeal in prison."

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

(function(d,s){d.getElementById("licnt2061").src= ";r"+escape(d.referrer)+ ((typeof(s)=="undefined")?"":";s"+s.width+"*"+s.height+"*"+ (s.colorDepth?s.colorDepth:s.pixelDepth))+";u"+escape(d.URL)+ ";h"+escape(d.title.substring(0,150))+";"+Math.random()}) (document,screen)