〔Press Release〕2016/03/29 Release Lee Ming-cheh Kolas Yotaka: Lee Ming-cheh is not Chinese

 

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Kolas called out to Chinese government and stated that “Lee Ming-cheh is not Chinese. He cannot without reason be confined.” She demanded the immediate release of Mr. Lee.

NGO activist Lee Ming-cheh was detained in China. He has been deemed a threat to national security. Legislator Kolas Yotaka accepted human right’s group’s invitation to join their press conference to demand the return of Mr. Lee. Kolas called out to Chinese government and stated that “Lee Ming-cheh is not Chinese. He cannot without reason be confined.” She demanded the immediate release of Mr. Lee.

Kolas expressed that in mid-2016, China authorities closed Mr. Lee’s WeChat account. Now, he is being detained by Chinese state officials. The detention seems premeditated and “this situation is quite worrying.” Kolas pointed out that since Deng Xiaoping’s reign, NGOs have been allowed to operate in China. Current official estimate is 7,000 nongovernmental organizations operating in China. On April 28, 2016, China passed a law on the management of foreign non-governmental organizations’ activities within Mainland China. This law manages the operations of foreign NGOs and requires the organizations to register with the police. Kolas suspects that Chinese officials are using this law to detain Lee. “The funny thing is, if the organizations are working on the environment or the economy, then they would be approved, but if the NGOs have to do with law reform or human rights, then they are out of luck.”

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Currently, there is not a lot of information available. From media reports, Mr. Lee supposedly left Macao on March 19 and crossed its borders and entered into Zhuhai. However, after his arrival in China, he became incommunicado. No one knows of his personal safety or his condition. Kolas also offered her sympathy to Mr. Lee’s wife, Lee Ching-yu. Though she looks strong, she must be suffering.

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Kolas also offered her sympathy to Mr. Lee’s wife, Lee Ching-yu. Though she looks strong, she must be suffering.

Kolas also offered her sympathy to Mr. Lee’s wife, Lee Ching-yu. Though she looks strong, she must be suffering.

Kolas also offered her sympathy to Mr. Lee’s wife, Lee Ching-yu. Though she looks strong, she must be suffering.

Kolas expressed that five days ago, a Chinese-born Australian permanent-resident professor, after he entered China, was detained on March 24 when he tried to board a plane to go back to Australia. Professor Feng Chongyi has been researching human rights lawyers living in China and is also deemed to endanger national security. China’s foreign affairs representative when asked about Mr. Feng’s situation, she replied, “I do not know the specifics of this case. I think he is Chinese citizen with a Chinese passport. While giving her remarks, Kolas appealed to the Chinese authorities. “If China calls itself a lawful country, then it should release Mr. Lee without delay. Mr. Lee is not Chinese. He is Taiwanese. He is detained without any just cause.”

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