Ni Wanhua 倪文华 is famous for defending the rights of victims of unlawful evictions. Yesterday, Ni and several other lawyers, including Zhang Hua 张华 and Tan Yuzhen 唐玉珍, suddenly discovered that they had become victims of “forced eviction”. Ni, Zhang and Tan had all received notices from Internet service providers that hosted their law blogs, informing them that their blogs would be taken down. The “eviction notices” were delivered either by phone or by emails. This development came as a surprise for those who were affected. They have all expressed concerns about the consequences of such ill-conceived action.
Victims of forced evictions in China have very few channels for voicing their grievances. Official broadcasting services and news publications very seldom report news about forced eviction. Widespread corruptions and cover-ups also make it almost impossible for victims to redress their case either through petitions or through other legal means. In other words, media suppression and government official’s inability (or unwillingness) to deal with victims’ complaints help encourage property developers to collude with local governments in carrying out illegal evictions, sometimes even through brutal and violent means. In circumstances like this, posting comments at online forums and writing blog posts become the only avenues for ordinary people to make their grievances known to the public. Who would have expected that even voices like these can no longer be tolerated? Is it really to the best interest of China to strip away victims’ limited freedom of speech? One couldn’t help but wonder: Is this the way the Chinese government intends to promote “harmony” and “stability”?
You can follow this link to find screen shots of emails in relation to the “forced eviction” of law blogs. The eviction notices were issued by a law information website called law-star.com or 法律博客.