For human rights defenders the struggle is not just to implement rules and regulations and theoretical international standards. It is is about the right to raise your voice without the fear of arbitrary violence, whether by the state or others. Guo Feixiong has defended farmers illegally evicted from their land, Falun Gong practitioners persecuted for their beliefs and journalists who dared to speak out. He is a symbol of the endurance of the human spirit, of the will to survive and of the human need for the free air of ideas, to make life worth living. He is a worthy recipient of the 2015 Front Line Defenders Award.”
- Irish writer Sebastian Barry
Dear President Xi - What would you tell your daughter?
Chinese democracy activist Guo Feixiong jailed for six years in Xi crackdown
Guo Feixiong jailing: "I can understand him and support his dream"
Statement by Chinese Rights Campaigner Sentenced to 6 Years in Prison
Guo Feixiong is a faithful idealist. Although he has experienced a wide range of political persecution by the Chinese government including, being sentenced to four prison terms, being the target of a witch hunt, and enduring countless brutal and evil tortures from the Chinese government he still holds a peaceful and pure heart. He shows enduring strength and courage to pursue rights, equality and justice peacefully. We are proud of Guo Feixiong and all the other human rights defenders and lawyers working to the same end in China.
Guo Feixiong is a well known figure in China's rights defence movement and has previously spent five years in prison for his human rights activities. In 2005, the human rights defender provided legal assistance and organisational support to residents in Taishi village in Guangdong province who were seeking to remove their village chief whom they accused of corruption. As a result of his involvement in this case, he was held by the police for three months without charge, during which time he went on hunger strike to protest his treatment.
When he was released in December 2005 he was subjected to regular surveillance, harassment and at least one severe beating before being detained again in September 2006. In November 2007 he was sentenced to five years in prison, back dated to his arrest the previous year, for “illegal business activity” following his publication of a book documenting a political scandal in China's north eastern Liaoning province.
On his release in September 2011, Guo Feixiong said that the treatment he received while in police custody and later in prison was 'beyond people's imagination'. He was reportedly shackled to a wooden bed for 42 days and hung naked from a ceiling by his arms while police used an electric baton to electrocute him. Over the years, Guo Feixiong has undertaken five hunger strikes in support of human rights and protesting his treatment. These have lasted 3, 59, 24, 75, and 25 days respectively.