南都網前編輯李新泰國神秘失蹤 Chinese rights campaigner disappears in Thailand

李波翻版? 南都網前編輯李新泰國神秘失蹤
Chinese rights campaigner disappears in Thailand
Li Xin, who has not been heard from since boarding a train, is the latest of Beijing’s critics to go missing in a country that is China’s ally
文/自由亞洲電台、蘋果日報、立場新聞、the Guardian
香港銅鑼灣書店股東和員工等5人失蹤多時,至今仍下落不明之際,再有內地傳媒人失蹤。自由亞洲電台報道,前南都網編輯李新在泰國北部邊境失蹤十天,泰國警方拒絕接受報案,稱應該向中國大使館查詢。李新在國內的妻子向在河南家鄉的李新的父母表示,要他們向當地公安報案。
曾自曝不甘給河南國安充當線人的南都網前編輯李新,本月1日輾轉到泰國,10日晚登上由曼谷前往邊境廊開的列車,試圖進入老撾,但於11日早上突然與妻子失去聯絡。網名「十三妹」的李新妻子曾在丈夫失蹤一周後,向聯合國與國際社會發出緊急求助,希望營救可能遭到有關當局綁架的李新。
據李新妻子向傳媒表示,國安人員要求李新協助監控其他維權人士,否則就將他拘捕控以間諜罪名。李新於去年10月出國前往印度,嘗試尋求西方政治庇護。到達印度後,本月初,李新前往泰國,10日晚乘火車轉往老撾,翌日與家人失聯。李妻相信,李是被中共人員帶走。
李妻前日表示,丈夫失蹤已十天,目前仍音訊全無,有朋友向泰國警方報案,但被拒絕。反指要向中國大使館了解。
A rights activist and former columnist who fled China and leaked confidential documents detailing Communist party propaganda efforts has vanished in Thailand, according to his wife.
Li Xin was last heard from before boarding a train en route to Laos. His disappearance follows other cases where critics of Beijing have gone missing or been deported by Thailand’s China-allied junta.
Li, a former writer for the Southern Metropolis Daily newspaper, had been trying unsuccessfully for months to claim political asylum in a western country, his wife, Shi Sanmei, told the Guardian.
She said Li had fled to New Delhi last October after Chinese state security tried to blackmail him into spying on other activists, threatening him with spying charges if he did not comply.
“He was recruited to be a source before. But he left to seek political asylum,” Shi said by phone from China. “I think he was brought back by the Communist party.”
Once in India, Li leaked documents from his work at the newspaper, including a government-written list of topics that were off-limits to journalists. India would not accept his application and he was also rejected by the US embassy after applying for a tourist visa, Radio Free Asia reported.
Li travelled this year to Thailand, a long-time hub for Chinese fugitives trying to make it to the west, where he boarded a train to the north-eastern border to enter Laos. His wife has since been unable to reach him.
“He got on a train from Bangkok to Nong Khai at 8.36pm on 10 January. We had been in touch those days. The next day, around 7.40am, we lost contact,” Shi said.
“The [Chinese] authorities said they can arrest him at any time and charge him for endangering state security and for being a spy. He is scared. He couldn’t stay in China any more. He has been trying to get out from China.”
Thailand’s coup leaders, who took power in 2014, have bolstered ties with China, including signing an agreement to increase joint military engagement.
In October, a Hong Kong publisher, Gui Minhai, who wrote gossip books on China’s rulers, went missing in Thailand and reappeared last week tearfully “confessing” on Chinese state television to a hit-and-run crime.
Several officials from Thailand’s office of the prime minister have recently visited the Pattaya apartment owned by Gui to gather information on the days before he vanished, a source with knowledge of the visit said on condition of anonymity.
While it was not clear what the officials did exactly, the move marks the first visit to the apartment from police or authorities, despite requests from Sweden, where he holds citizenship. Friends and family of Gui believe Chinese security agents abducted him and accuse Thai authorities of complicity or at least overlooking his alleged kidnapping.
In November, two Chinese men who were officially registered as refugees with the United Nations were arrested and repatriated by Thai authorities, infuriating the UN refugee agency.
Thailand also forcefully deported about 100 ethnic Uighur Muslims back to China in July. The UNHCR said at the time that the expulsion was “a flagrant violation of international law”.
Hundreds, possibly thousands, of the Turkic-speaking minority have fled unrest and persecution in China’s western Xinjiang region, where hundreds of people have been killed. Many have travelled through south-east Asia.
A spokesman for the Thai government did not immediately comment on the disappearance of Li Xin or the alleged visit by officials to Gui Minhai’s apartment. He said he would look into the matter and reply at a later time.