Tuesday, May 26, 2015Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Tight security at Chinese court for dissident's trial

Published on Jan 22, 2014 1:19 PM

BEIJING (AFP) - Strict security was imposed outside a courthouse in Beijing on Wednesday ahead of the trial of Xu Zhiyong, one of China's most prominent dissidents, for his part in anti-corruption protests.

Xu, founder of the New Citizens Movement, faces a five-year jail term on charges of "assembling a crowd to disrupt order in a public place" for protests which saw activists display banners calling for asset disclosure by officials - seen as a key measure against graft.

Dozens of police, in uniform and plain clothes, surrounded the court in western Beijing, harassing reporters and trying to prevent them filming in front of the court building.

Xu is one of eight New Citizens Movement activists due to stand trial this week in what has been viewed as part of a government crackdown on dissent.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!