Congressional Commission Welcomes Release of Imprisoned Chinese Dissident

Congressional-Executive Commission on China |

Congressional Commission Welcomes Release of Imprisoned Chinese Dissident

March 4, 2004

(Washington, DC)—The Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC) welcomed the Chinese government’s release on medical parole March 4 of long-imprisoned dissident Wang Youcai. Mr. Wang has now arrived in the United States to undergo medical treatment.

"Human rights issues are sensitive matters in the U.S.-China relationship," said Commission chairman James A. Leach (R-IA), "but Wang Youcai’s release is a step in the right direction." Congressman Leach hoped that Mr. Wang’s release, together with that of Tibetan nun Phuntsog Nidrol last week, "betokens a more conciliatory Chinese government policy on political dissent." Co-Chairman Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) agreed, saying, "The release of Wang Youcai is a positive development. The U.S. challenge is to convince China that economic strength and religious and political freedoms are not contradictory; but complementary paths to prosperity."

Congress established the CECC in 2000 as part of the trade act that authorized the President to grant permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) tariff status to Chinese goods. The 23-member Commission monitors human rights and the development of the rule of law in China, and seeks to promote bilateral cooperation on human rights, the rule of law, and cultural exchange.