Fears are mounting that Chinese human rights advocate Dong Guangping, who had been in hiding in Vietnam awaiting resettlement to Canada as a refugee, has been sent back to China. He was last seen on Aug. 24, 2022, being put in a police car, handcuffed and blindfolded, by about a dozen police officers outside his apartment in Hanoi.
Alex Neve, Senior Fellow at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs of the University of Ottawa, suspects Dong may have been sent back to China due to the lack of information from the Vietnamese government.
“The concern is that the Vietnamese government has unlawfully sent Dong Guangping over to Chinese authorities, though there is no confirmation of that,” Neve said to The Epoch Times. “He is likely now being held in incommunicado detention somewhere in China, which, amongst other things, he may very well be at grave risk of being tortured and mistreated.”
In December 2022, three U.N. special rapporteurs sent a letter of concern to the Vietnamese government seeking clarification about Dong’s arbitrary arrest and enforced disappearance, while noting his imminent risk of being sent back to China. The rapporteurs requested that the Vietnamese government “provide detailed information on the fate and whereabouts of Mr. Dong Guangping and all the measures taken by the authorities to search for him.” The Vietnamese government failed to respond within the 60-day deadline.
Dong, a former police officer from Zhengzhou in Henan Province, has long been a vocal critic of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) for its rights abuses and suppression of the Chinese people. In an interview with The Epoch Times in August 2022, he commented on the systematic sexual abuse of incarcerated female religious believers in China at the hands of the CCP to force them to renounce their beliefs.
His family is worried that he may have been handed over to Chinese officials and is imprisoned somewhere in China. On Feb. 14, Dong’s daughter, Katherine Dong, criticized the Vietnamese government for not responding either to her, to Canadian government officials, or to the U.N. rapporteurs about her father’s whereabouts.
“The government of Vietnam continues to torment my family by refusing to explain why they arrested my father almost six months ago and what has happened to him since,” Katherine Dong said in a news release. “Vietnamese officials must answer our simple question, ‘where is Dong Guangping?”
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