A group of human rights lawyers launched an engaging online campaign to encourage Chinese citizens to tell about their experiences with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) during the pandemic last year, inviting them to lose their fear and rely on the truth.
The campaign’s background is to honor the famous Dr. Li Wenliang, who was imprisoned for warning the world about the virus’s existence when the CCP was hiding everything.
The Chinese lawyers’ group had already implemented a similar campaign last year, and now it has been reactivated with more force. According to South China Morning Post, the idea came about as a way of honoring their brave colleague Li who died after contracting the virus weeks after exposing what was happening in China under the complicity of the CCP.
Li, who died on Feb. 6 2020, has been hailed as a national hero by CCP detractors for warning on private messaging groups about discovering a “Sars-like” disease in the city in late December 2019.
Li was one of the first people to warn about the disease, but his attempts were in vain as the CCP managed to silence him, as The Guardian reported at the time.
Liu Shuqing, one of those driving the campaign inside China in Li’s honor, called on “all Chinese to speak the truth in their personal capacity” and recommended that the commemoration serve as a public warning of the consequences of losing the right to freedom of speech.
“It’s not about the right to criticize the government, but to inspire people to speak out as Li Wenliang did,” Liu said.
According to Liu, the goal is to raise awareness about the importance of telling the truth and remembering the price for Li and the country as a whole due to the outbreak “after the authorities lifted the early warning.”
On Dec. 30, 2019, Li sent a statement to other colleagues through a group conversation where he warned about this dangerous infection.
Shortly after, he was claimed by the Public Security authorities, being investigated by the police, along with hundreds of other people, for spreading alleged rumors. He was forced to sign a letter acknowledging that he had made “false comments.”
Several people who reported on the outbreak in Wuhan last year were detained and harassed by authorities, including lawyer Zhang Zhan, who was recently sentenced to four years in prison.
In a report published by ProPublica, leaked documents chronicle the massive propaganda and censorship efforts used by the CCP to regain control of the country’s narrative about the CCP Virus after Li’s published warning messages came to light.
CCP officials were overly concerned that Li’s death would cause a “butterfly effect” on news about the virus, damaging the regime.
As a result, they ordered the media not to promote stories about Li and set up an army of internet trolls to remove the doctor’s name from social networking sites and news lists and censor his stories.