Shortly before the Beijing Olympics, the Chinese authorities set up “Protest Parks” as a front to show that they would allow its citizens to demonstrate during the Olympics. In the end, the parks were never used. It is not because no one tried to protest in those parks. The authorities didn’t actually allow any protest to take place. To access the park, you couldn’t just show up with signs and noise makers. You had to apply for a permit. The authorities received an abundance of permit applications but none was approved.

Some of the people who applied to protest were detained by police. One of those individuals is legal activist Ji Sizun who had been giving legal advice to local people in his native Fujian Province. He was planning to protest against corruption and to call for greater participation of the Chinese people in the political processes.

Ji Sizun was detained while applying to protest during the Beijing Olympics on August 11, 2008 and he was sent back to Fujian Province. He has been held at the Fuzhou No.2 Detention Center ever since. On January 7th, Ji Sizun was sentenced by the Taijiang District People’s Court to three years’ imprisonment for “forging official documents and faking official seals” in 2006.

Amnesty International issued an Urgent Action for Ji Sizun on December 5, 2008. The action was updated today to reflect the prison sentence.

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