Detained Chinese lawyer Wang Yu wins Ludovic Trarieux Prize

June 7, 2016


Chinese human rights lawyer Wang Yu poses during an interview in Hong Kong, March 20, 2014. –  AFP
Radio Free Asia reported on 6 June 2016 that detained (on suspicion of “subversion of state power”) lawyer Wang Yu was awarded the prestigious Ludovic Trarieux Prize in Athens on Saturday. [for more info on award see:]. The jury said it wanted to “hail the courage” of a woman who “decided that she could no longer keep her mouth shut,” founder Bernard Favreau said. “She chose to expose herself to dangers in order to defend the rights of women, children and persecuted minorities,” he told Agence France-Presse.

Wang’s attorney Wen Donghai welcomed the award. “They used a serious of objective criteria, for example, the fact that Wang Yu often gave legal assistance to clients from vulnerable groups,” Wen said. “This has nothing to do with any government, nor with diplomacy.” But he said the award is unlikely to help Wang’s case with the Chinese authorities. “I don’t hold out much hope of that, because our government has a very biased attitude to such prizes, and they see human rights groups as trying to interfere in China’s internal affairs,” Wen said. “In reality, rights groups aren’t targeting China, but trying to help victims and vulnerable people around the world.” Wang has unfortunately figured regularly in this blog: 

[The award comes as the families of dozens of rights lawyers detained on similar charges hit out at the government for denying the detainees access to their lawyers, and amid concerns that some detainees may have been tortured or sexually abused in police detention centers.]

On 5 June 2016, in a joint letter Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, China Aid, Freedom House, Human Rights in China, Initiatives for China, International Campaign for Tibet, Reporters without Borders, Uyghur Human Rights Project, and World Uygur Congress – urged the US to:
  • Meet with representatives of civil society in China during or immediately after the meeting;
  • Press Chinese counterparts to repeal or bring into line with international law new national security laws, including the Counterterrorism and the Foreign Non-Governmental Management laws;
  • Publicly call for the release of specific individuals detained for peacefully exercising their rights; and
  • Publicly discuss US concerns about growing restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and religion, among others.

In Hong Kong, protesters marched to Beijing’s Liaison Office in the former British colony on Monday, demanding an inquiry into the 2012 “suicide” death of Chinese labor rights activist Li Wangyang in police custody four years ago. Rights activist Ou Biaofeng said Li’s friends and relatives are under house arrest or close police surveillance on the anniversary of his death. “They are all under surveillance by the state security police, and are cooperating

For the Lucovic-Trarieux prize 2015:

Source: Detained Chinese Lawyer Wins Award Amid Calls For Pressure on Human Rights

4 Responses to “Detained Chinese lawyer Wang Yu wins Ludovic Trarieux Prize”

  1. […] The lawyer also said that she will not recognize, endorse or accept the Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize awarded to her in June, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported […]. […]

  2. […] The lawyer also said that she will not recognize, endorse or accept the Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize awarded to her in June, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported […]. […]

  3. […] Saturday, 27 May 2017  jailed UAE lawyer Mohammed al-Roken was announced as the winner of the Ludovic Trarieux Award. This award is given by the Luxembourg-instigated European Bar Human Rights Institute (IDHAE), and is named after Trarieux, who in 1898 founded France’s Human Rights League. The annual award, worth 20,000 euros, recognises lawyers who have sought to defend human rights, often at great risk to themselves. [… […]

  4. […] On 4 December 2019 China Change, published a detailed article on an international lawyers event to be held on 9-10 December in Guangzhou. It quotes many Chinese lawyers who are not welcome. Who would attend such a meeting? Here the view of Wang Yu, Beijing, first 709 detainee, recipient of the Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize in 2016, and recipient of the inaugural International Human Rights Award by American Bar Association in 2016.) “I believe that the Chinese authorities are convening the so-called Global Lawyers Forum to repair its international image following the 709 Crackdown on human rights lawyers. I heard that the President of the International Bar Association, Mr. Horacio Bernardes Neto, will attend and give a keynote speech; so will the President of the Council of Bar and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) and the President of the All India Bar Association. I want to ask these distinguished guests to learn about lawyers’ plight in China and compare it to the World Bar Association’s Edinburgh Declaration in 2016. I also want to ask the Chinese government: If you are to convene such a global lawyers’ gathering, do you intend to respect this Declaration?” (😉 […]

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