WINTER 06 Empty Chair: Yang Maodong
Yang Maodong, also known by his pen name Guo Feixiong, is a legal advisor, rural civil rights activist, independent publisher, and author. His literary works include two novels and a short story collection. He has also published many poems, essays, and critical articles.
Yang Moadong was one of three writers recently arrested in China.
In September 2006 police officers searched his home in Guangzhou, Guangdong province. Among the items confiscated were his computers, books, and manuscripts.
Originally accused of using false ISBNs, he has now been charged with other illegal publishing practices. However, Yang Moadong's lawyers say that the arrest is connected to the publication of a book entitled Earthquake of Shenyang Government, to which Moadong denies authorship.
In 2005 Yang Moadong was detained for his involvement in an anti-corruption campaign. He had been attempting to provide legal advice to Taishi villagers.
The author has also participated in hunger strikes, once to protest the government's "crackdown" on human rights defender, and again to protest police brutality he'd experienced. He was arrested held in custody for a short time for the latter strike.
For the past year Yang Moadong has been the subject of harassment, and he and his family has received death threats. Now imprisoned, Yang Moadong reports being abused .
Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; the right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers.
These organizations feel that the arrest of Yang Moadong (Guo Feixiong) is a violation of Human Rights .