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Fewer Juvenile Arrests Approved; Migrants Bear Brunt of Charges

The Supreme People’s Procuratorate recently announced that lower percentages of juvenile arrests and indictments were approved in 2014 than in the previous two years. SPP data showed that juvenile offenders are getting younger and violent offenses are not uncommon. Sources say that non-custodial sentences still result in about 40 percent of juvenile trials. Two-thirds of juveniles tried in 2014 were migrants.

PHOTO Judge reads verdict to juvenile defendants. Credit: Yunnan Qujin People’s Congress

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Dui Hua Digest

In this issue of Digest, we discuss the public consultation process for China’s draft law on the management of foreign non-governmental organizations. Prisoner updates include sentence reductions for Falun Gong prisoners, but not for members of Almighty God, another so-called cult. Looking back, we review Executive Director John Kamm’s meeting with Party Politburo Standing Committee member Li Ruihuan, where they discussed the significance of prisoner releases.

PHOTO The NPC opens a legislative session at which the draft foreign NGO law was deliberated.

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More People Say China Doesn’t Respect Human Rights, Global Poll

Chinese diplomats often assert that progress on human rights in China has been remarkable and is “plain to see.” The results of a recent survey by the Pew Research Center call this rosy assessment into question. In country after country, including China’s top trading partners, big majorities see human rights in China as bad and getting worse.

PHOTO Hundreds of protesters march in Istanbul on July 5 against Beijing’s policies towards the Muslim Uyghur minority. Image Credit: AP

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China: Women Prisoner Numbers Rise 10 Times Faster than Men

Between 2003 and 2014, the number of women incarcerated in Chinese prisons soared 46%, 10 times faster than growth for the population of incarcerated men. By comparison, the number of women in US prisons grew 15% over the period, about one & a half times faster than the growth rate for men. Gender-based violence, poverty, and political activism are possible causes. The results appear to be overcrowded prisons and a greater need for the Bangkok Rules.

PHOTO Women exercise in the yard at Henan Women’s Prison. Image credit: sina.com

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Despite Legal Reform, SPC Still Blocks Lawyer-Client Access

Improving criminal defense lawyers’ access to clients was hailed as one of the highlights of the revised Criminal Procedure Law (CPL) that came into force in 2013. That law requires detention centers to arrange for access within 48 hours of request by a lawyer. But what recourse is there when these provisions are not strictly enforced? Institutional reform doesn’t appear to be on the horizon and intervention by the courts hasn’t been effective since 1999.

PHOTO Defense lawyer Zhang Kai requesting to meet with his client, October 2014. Credit: Weibo

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Annual Report 2014

In our 15th year, Dui Hua cemented its status as the only organization in the world, other than the United Nations, that receives information from the Chinese government on prisoners of conscience. In 2014, we asked about 64 prisoners and received responses regarding 38 people and 13 acts of clemency. We also engaged China by holding an international symposium on women in prison and a seminar on the sealing of juvenile records.

Read the 2014 Annual Report

Featured Video: China’s Human Rights Diplomacy

Developments in China’s human rights diplomacy since June 4, 1989.

What We Do

Dui Hua is a nonprofit humanitarian organization that brings clemency and better treatment to at-risk detainees through promotion of universally recognized human rights in well-informed, mutually respectful dialogue with China.

We focus on four areas, with an aim to help at-risk detainees—political and religious prisoners, juvenile justice, women in prison, and selected issues in criminal justice. And we take a five-pronged approach, premised upon our belief that positive change is realized through constructive dialogue—advocacy, expert exchange, research, publications, and community engagement.

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