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Detained AIDS Activist Plans to Sue China:

Posted By: Martha Buffett

By AUDRA ANG, Associated Press Writer

BEIJING - A prominent AIDS activist who accuses Chinese security forces of abducting and holding him for 41 days said Friday he would sue the government for improperly detaining him.

Hu Jia, who was released Tuesday, said it appeared he was taken because he helped spearhead a hunger strike to protest violence against dissidents.

"I can't keep quiet about this," Hu said in an interview at a Beijing cafe while plainclothes security agents watched from a distance. "I must take these actions to file a lawsuit and let them know that the Chinese people will still let their voices be heard."

Telephones at the Beijing Public Security Bureau, whose officers Hu said took part in the abduction, were not answered Friday.

Hu, one of the country's brashest activists, has regular run-ins with authorities.

In 2004, he said he was placed under house arrest to prevent him from traveling to a village with a high incidence of AIDS while a U.S. Embassy delegation was visiting.

Authorities in China had a long history of ignoring or hiding the AIDS problem in the country. They have recently begun acknowledging the seriousness of the issue.

Hu said he had been under surveillance to prevent him from having contact with Gao Zhisheng, the outspoken lawyer who launched a symbolic, rolling hunger strike campaign to protest violence against dissidents.

Several thousand participants have fasted for 24 to 48 hours since the protest began Feb. 6, Gao said and at least six people who participated in the strike or had ties to Gao have been detained or disappeared in recent months.

Hu said that on Feb. 16, four men in an unmarked car abducted him and brought him to a hotel room, where he was kept under tight surveillance and interrogated.

He said he refused food and drink the first five days but was told that if he didn't eat, he would be forced fed. He said that for the next 30 days, he ate a watery gruel and lost at least 22 pounds. Hu, who suffers from cirrhosis, said his condition was aggravated because he had no medication.

He was then moved to another location — a hotel room with rats.

On March 28, Hu was dropped off about 2 miles from his home. His captors gave no reason. Hu said they warned him: "There's no use in fighting. You've suffered so much for so long. If you don't want this to happen again, stay away from sensitive activities."

Hu said that before he was let go, his captors took his diary and any other trace of his captivity.

"All evidence was destroyed," he said.


Courtesy Of: Yahoo! News

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