Blind anti-forced abortion activist Chen Guangcheng and his family have arrived safely in the U.S.
Chen escaped house arrest in April and, with the world watching, cried out to the United States for asylum. Chen reportedly endured brutal treatment while under house arrest, even being tortured for hours in front of his young child.
"We are happy for Chen and his family. This is a great day for freedom fighters," said Bob Fu, founder and president of ChinaAid. “This further proves that constructive dialogues with international pressure can surely produce concrete positive result.”
Media coverage of Chen has been extensive. But there has been little information about his activities that angered the Chinese government.
Called "the barefoot lawyer" because he practices law but has no degree, Chen went from village to village in Shandong Province collecting testimonies of tens of thousands of women who had been rounded up and forced to be sterilized or have abortions, even in the eighth month of pregnancy.
He exposed some 130,000 forced abortions that took place in one year in that one province and filed class-action lawsuits on behalf of the victimized families. As a result he was sentenced to over four years' imprisonment. Since his release he and his family have been under strict surveillance at home.
“We know that the battle against the injustice of the One-Child Policy is far from over, however,” said Chai Ling, founder of All Girls Allowed, which has a mission to reveal the injustice of the One-Child Policy. “Right now, the women in China that Chen fought to protect are still undergoing forced abortions and sterilizations.
“Families still dispose of baby girls at a devastating rate, leaving 40 million unaccounted for. Chen was jailed or confined from 2006 until last month for working to end these injustices. And just two weeks ago, reporter Melissa Chan of Al-Jazeera was expelled from Beijing for shedding light on these things.”
ChinaAid continues to urge vigilance and increased international attention to the situation faced by Chen’s extended family members, including his nephew Chen Kegui and his elder brother Chen Guangfu as well as his sister-in-law Ren Zongju. They are all facing possible severe punishment as a result of Chen's escape from his house last month.