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Chinese Democracy Activist Pleads For Prisoners’ Release

Mon., Oct. 27, 1997

A veteran democracy campaigner called on Chinese authorities Sunday to release 12 dissidents, saying people should not be jailed for their political views.

Bao Ge’s written appeal coincided with the departure of Chinese President Jiang Zemin for the United States. Several dissidents and their families have appealed for releases ahead of the state visit, the first by a Chinese leader in 12 years.

Bao, released in June after spending three years in a labor camp for political activism, said people should be allowed to exercise freedoms supposedly guaranteed in China’s constitution, including freedom of speech, demonstration and association.

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