Wife of activist held in China explains why she's not hiring a lawyer

2017/06/01 23:02:37 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
File photo of Lee Ching-yu

File photo of Lee Ching-yu

Taipei, June 1 (CNA) The wife of Lee Ming-che (李明哲), a Taiwanese human rights advocate who has been detained in China since March 19, on Thursday said she is not hiring a Chinese lawyer because China is ruled by men, not by law, and what she needs is the aid of legal consultants in Taiwan or other civilized countries.

This is the first time that Lee Ching-yu (李凈瑜) has made comments on why she has not hired a Chinese lawyer after her husband was arrested more than 70 days ago in China.

A Taiwan Affairs Office spokesman in Beijing said on May 26 that Lee Ming-che had been arrested on charges of "subverting state power" and had been in detention in Hunan Province since March 19.

Lee Ching-yu said she has no confidence in courts in China. If she hires a lawyer for her husband, that would mean she has recognized the Chinese courts are those in a "civilized" country and accepted the legitimacy of their rulings, which will undoubtedly put her husband in danger, she said.

A court in a state ruled by men is like a fascist theater, or a circus show, "so why should I spend big money to hire a lawyer to play a show with its director?" said Lee Ching-yu.

Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) on Thursday said it respects the decision by Lee Ming-che's family of not hiring a lawyer.

Chiu Chui-cheng (邱垂正), deputy head and spokesman of the MAC, said it had held a meeting with officials from Taiwan's Ministry of Justice, National Police Agency and the Straits Exchange Foundation on Wednesday.

The meeting, chaired by MAC head Chang Hsiao-yueh (張小月), reached a conclusion to request Beijing to notify Taiwan's government of Lee's situation, protect his legal rights and agree to allow his family to travel to China for a humanitarian visit, said Chiu.

Chang said on Wednesday that Lee's family should hire a lawyer in preparation for legal procedures.

Lee Ching-yu said on Wednesday that she will not consider hiring any Chinese lawyers until she sees her husband.

(By Lu Hsin-hui, Miao Tsung-han and Kuo Chung-han)

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