AIDS Activists Face Opposition from Chinese Government

In anticipation of world AIDS day, activists Hu Jia and Tian Xi faced pressure from authorities for bringing attention to difficulties faced by people with AIDS in China.

AIDS activist Hu Jia in June 2011 (Photo Courtesy of Radio Free Asia)

Hu Jia was released from prison in June after serving a three-year jail sentence for subversion. As a condition of his release, Mr. Hu must undergo one year of surveillance.

Despite his own recent release from prison, Mr. Hu expressed his fear for fellow activist Tian Xi, recently released after serving a one year sentence for staging a protest on World AIDS Day in 2009.

Mr. Hu claims that Mr. Tian has been unstable since his release, leading Mr. Hu to advocate for better treatment for AIDS patients on his behalf.

Mr. Hu has been unable to find a willing audience in the health ministry, which has ignored his requests and has threatened him with detention if he publicly protests. Mr. Hu stated that in the past ten years he has approached the health ministry to discuss potential solutions to the problems facing AIDS patients at least sixty times but has received no response.

Tian Xi’s plight against AIDS began when he pursued compensation after being infected with HIV through a blood transfusion following an injury he received at the age of nine.

In compensation for his contraction of HIV, Mr. Tian was given 30,000 yuan, which is the equivalent of $4,404 American dollars.

Rights activists allege that people with AIDS are often refused treatment, and infected children are denied access to schools. In addition, the medication that is provided by local governments is substandard and becomes ineffective after three to five years.

Gynecologist Gao Yaojie, who was forced into exile, urges that tainted blood transfusions continue to infect blood recipients in the Hunan province.

The total infected population in China is estimated at approximately 780,000 people.

Via Impunity Watch.

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Filed under Health, Sick Sad World, World

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