Statement by Jen Psaki, Spokesperson
U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesperson
January 25, 2014
Conviction of Xu Zhiyong
The United States is deeply disappointed by reports that a Chinese court has convicted prominent Chinese legal scholar and rights advocate Xu Zhiyong on charges of “gathering a crowd to disturb order in a public place” and sentenced him to four years in prison.
Xu, who has been detained by Chinese authorities since July, is a leading public advocate for fiscal transparency and fighting official corruption. We are concerned that Mr. Xu’s prosecution is retribution for his public campaign to expose corruption and for the peaceful expression of his views.
We call on Chinese authorities to release Xu and other political prisoners immediately, cease restrictions on their freedom of movement, and guarantee them the protections and freedoms to which they are entitled under China’s international human rights commitments.