'We Have Been Told to Leave Our Home After Police Threats'

china-niyulan-1-04-2016.jpg Beijing-based eviction activist Ni Yulan, who was left unable to walk after a police beating.
Photo courtesy of Ni Yulan.

Wheelchair-bound eviction activist Ni Yulan, 54, was sentenced in April 2012 to a two-year prison term following her conviction on charges of "fraud" and "causing a disturbance" by the Xicheng District People’s Court in Beijing. The sentence was later reduced by two months. Her husband, former schoolteacher Dong Jiqin, was also convicted of creating a disturbance and was handed a two-year term. Ni was released on Oct. 7, 2013 after serving her full jail term in spite of repeated requests from her family for medical parole. However, the couple has been repeatedly forced from their rented accommodation by police, who threaten their landlords and letting agents. Ni, who was targeted by the authorities after she began petitioning and offering legal advice to other petitioners, spoke to RFA about the most recent eviction threat against them:

On Jan. 1, we got a letter from the Beijing Aijia Property Management Co., requiring us to move out as soon as possible, because the landlord wants to repossess the property so as to live in it themselves.

The letter required us to pay any rent due and to finalize our termination of the contract by Jan. 10. We signed a rental agreement with them on Oct. 28 which was for one year.

On Nov. 9, some officers from our nearby police station in Andingmen came to check our papers. The agents also asked us back then if we had any problems in our background, otherwise, why would the police feel the need to come asking questions.

The agent told us that the police had visited their offices pretty much every day, asking about us, and kept calling them the whole time, telling them to force us to leave.

The agents have already been to visit us a number of times, saying that the police are giving them trouble, and asking us to move, because they can't cope with the threats they are getting [from the police].

We aren't planning to move out, because my health is pretty poor now, and they are in breach of contract. They are obliged to find us a place to live [if they want to terminate the contract].

But nobody has said anything about finding a place for us to live. All they said was that they would compensate us with the payment of two months' rent.

[An employee who answered the phone at the Beijing Aijia Property Management Co. on Monday denied that police had visited the company.]

Reported by Qiao Long for RFA's Mandarin Service. Translated by Luisetta Mudie.

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