Singtao Daily gives a comprehensive report today that Li Wangyang, a June 4 democracy movement leader who was imprisoned for 21 years, was found dead in a bizarre manner in a hospital in Hunan. He looked to have died of suicide, hanging on a piece of white cloth, but his feet had not left the ground. Being blind, deaf and unable to move about, his relatives and friends doubt that he could commit suicide, .
However, the authorities have determined that Li died of suicide, and forced removal of his body. The Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements in China planed to go to demonstrate before the Liaison Office of the Central Government, and demand a thorough investigation by the authorities.
Li’s death shocked everybody, as he usually had strong will power. According to his friend Zhu Chengzhi, when Li was arrested 23 years ago, he was as strong as an ox, but when he was released from prison, he was blind, deaf and unable to move around, though he remained clear in his mind. Zhu has had intimate talks with Li and found that though in poor health, Li was optimistic under the kind care of people of various circles, and would not commit suicide. However, he has now died suddenly. The day before yesterday, Li even asked his sister to buy a radio receiver for him to help train his hearing.
Li Wangyang was imprisoned for 21 years till his release in May last year. He was the democracy activist who was imprisoned for the longest term. Li was watched day and night by 10 policemen over the past few days. Zhang Lin, a dissident in Anhui Province, says in Twitter, “How could Li commit suicide since he was blind, deaf and paralysed in both his feet? Since he did not commit suicide when he suffered a lot in prison for 21 years, how would he commit suicide when he had obtained freedom?”
Li’s friend Li Zanming also said that Li’s sister said that her elder brother had been in good spirits recently, and it was impossible that he had the intention of suicide. Li’s body has already been moved by the authorities to the undertakers. The police asked his relatives to submit an application for autopsy that very day and stressed that the relatives should help the government in the investigation and should not take the opportunity to make trouble.
Lee Cheuk-yan, chairman of the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements in China, displayed quite a few photographs at Hong Kong’s Legislative Council to show that when Li’s body was found, Li’s feet were on the ground so that it did not look like a suicide.
He believes that since Li Wangyang had endured the bitterness of 21 years’ imprisonment, he would not easily commit suicide. Moreover, Li accepted a Hong Kong TV station’s interview earlier, and insisted that June 4 should be vindicated. Li said it cannot be denied that there is the possibility that the incident was revenge by a relevant department. The Alliance planned to demonstrate before the Liaison Office of the Central Government at noon, to demand an investigation of the incident by the central authority.
- 180,000 mourners in Hong Kong for June 4 remembrance, a new record (chinadailymail.com)
- Chinese Party wants Tiananmen incident not mentioned (chinadailymail.com)
- China dissident Li Wangyang found dead in hospital (guardian.co.uk)