Document 1 of 39.
Copyright 1998 Agence France Presse
Agence France Presse
September 14, 1998
SECTION: International news
LENGTH: 448 words
HEADLINE: Three more provinces join call for
China opposition party
DATELINE: BEIJING, Sept 14
Democracy activists in three more Chinese provinces applied Monday to register
the first opposition political party since 1949, bringing the number of
landmark applications to six.
Dissidents in the northeastern provinces of Liaoning, Jilin and Heilongjiang
lodged applications to register branches of the
China Democracy Party (CDP), activist Leng Wanbao from Jilin province said by telephone.
The three demands followed on from applications in central Hubei province, and
eastern Shandong and Zhejiang provinces.
They were made by five Liaoning activists, two Jilin activists and a
"I am ready to accept any consequence from this effort to apply for
registration, no matter if it results in the revocation of my lawyer's licence
or political persecution," Wang Wenjiang, a
lawyer from Liaoning, told the US-based
Free China Movement.
"I have told my family I am willing to sacrifice myself for the cause of a free
China," he added in a faxed statement.
Activists from eastern Shandong and central Hubei provinces said Friday that
officials in both provinces had accepted opposition party applications for
consideration and had asked for four simple conditions to be fulfilled.
The four conditions were that the party had a capitalisation of 50,000 yuan
(6,000 dollars), that details of its headquarters and main organisers were
provided, and there were at least 50 named members.
thought about the possibilty that the government is luring us into a trap but
we are not afraid. We will fulfill the four conditions and see what happens," Hubei dissident Qin Yongmin said.
"We don't want to move too fast and put too much pressure on the government," he added.
An official from the mass
organisations section of the Hubei Civil Affairs Bureau indicated that changes
could be afoot as the government was
"revising" regulations on mass organisations in order to make the process more simple.
Over the summer, dissidents in eastern Zhejiang province made the initial
attempt to register the CDP -- the first attempt to
register a party since the start of Communist rule in 1949.
But that application led to several detentions.
Police held about 20 activists associated with the party and activist Wang
Youcai was arrested for
"incitement to overthrow state power," a reference to his attempt to legally register the
He was later released and told to report daily to the police.
"The formal arrest has been changed to a kind of house arrest where the police
come to my house everyday and I have to tell them what I am doing," Wang said.
"I don't think the police will press the formal charges," he added.
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