China Chen Guangcheng arrives in New York
19 May 2012

China Chen Guangcheng arrives in New York

On 19 May 2012, Chen Guangcheng arrived in the United States, together with his wife and two children. On arrival at the New York University, where he will study law, he said he will continue to work to promote justice and equality in China.

The blind Chinese human rights lawyer escaped from his heavily guarded home where he had been under house arrest since he was released from prison in September 2010 on 22 April 2012. After his escape, he stayed at the US Embassy in Beijing for six days. He left the embassy and indicated he wanted to stay in China after the authorities promised to guarantee his safety. One day later, he had reconsidered this point of view because he still feared for the security of his family. In a phone conversation with the US Congress on 3 May 2012, Guangcheng indicated that he wanted to travel to the US because he feared for the safety of his family if he would stay in China. One day later, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing announced that Chen Guangcheng was free to apply for a study permit, which once granted, would allow him to travel to the US.

In a video message that was posted online after his alleged escape, Guangcheng complains about the way he and his family have been treated over the past years (see below).

In February 2012, L4L organised a letter writing campaign to ask attention for his case.

A year earlier, in February 2011, Guangcheng had a video published to share his and his family’s harsh living conditions with the world (watch it here). In response to Guangcheng’s publication of this video, he and his wife were severely beat up.

Here you can see the video that was posted after Chen’s alleged escape.

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