The prominent Chinese human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng has been awarded by the American Bar Association for his human rights work. Gao has been missing since last year. His 17-year old daughter accepted the award for her father at a ceremony in San Francisco. Here’s that story.
The American Bar Association presented its International Human Rights Lawyer Award to Chinese rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng.
Gao has been missing since last year. He resurfaced briefly in April this year, but has disappeared again since then. It’s not known whether he is detained, in hiding or is dead.
His wife and 17-year-old daughter attended the award ceremony in San Francisco on Friday, August 6th. The daughter accepted the award on her father’s behalf.
[Penny Wakefield, ABA International Human Rights Law Committee Spokesperson]: (English)
“We presented the international human rights lawyer award to Gao Zhisheng today to recognize his longstanding commitment to human rights for all and his struggle throughout his career to represent others in need of lawyers to defend their human rights—but also for the example he sets for other lawyers in China and around the world to fight for others’ rights as well as their own.”
Gao is one of China’s most highly respected lawyers, who often took on cases protecting home owners, house Christians, and Falun Gong practitioners.
Just before the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Gao wrote a letter to the United States Congress denouncing the human rights situation in China. He was subsequently detained and tortured.
His wife, daughter and son fled to the United States last year where they have received asylum.