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Document 17 of 39.

Copyright 1998 Associated Press  
AP Online

July 11, 1998; Saturday 05:17 Eastern Time

SECTION: International news

LENGTH: 510 words

HEADLINE: Six Chinese Dissidents Detained



    Police detained at least six Chinese democracy campaigners in a crackdown that exiled dissidents said proves President Clinton left China without securing progress on human rights.

The six, veterans of past democracy movements, have tried to set up a political party to challenge the Communist Party's monopoly on power. Their push coincided with Clinton's China trip and his less confrontational appeals to Chinese leaders to improve human rights.

Police began the wave of detentions Friday morning, taking Wu Gaoxing from his home in eastern Zhejiang province's Taizhou city, dissident groups in Hong Kong and the United States said.

On Friday night, 150 miles to the northwest in Hangzhou city, police swarmed the home of Wang Youcai and led away him, Wang Peijian and Cheng Fan, the groups said. The U.S.-based Chinese Democratic Justice Party said Wang Youcai's wife reported that police detained two other visitors whom she didn't recognize.

In separate raids on their Hangzhou homes, police took away Zhu Yufu and Wang Donghai, the Chinese Democratic Justice Party said.

Police confiscated notebooks, tapes, at least one computer and literature for the China Democracy Party, according to the U.S.-based dissidents and the Hong Kong-based Information Center of Human Rights and Democratic Movement in China.

Wang Youcai, Wang Peijian and one other dissident announced June 25, the start of Clinton's nine-day China tour, that they wanted to establish the China Democracy Party and would register the group with authorities as required by law.

Since then Wang Youcai, Zhu Yufu and another dissident were detained at least once each before Friday's clampdown. They were released with warnings to stop campaigning for the party, and authorities have refused to register the group.

In reporting the detentions, the exiled groups described Clinton's China policy as a failure. Clinton used his trip to try to showcase a more modern, tolerant China to a skeptical American public while cajoling Chinese leaders to allow more dissent.

''This is equivalent to giving Clinton a box on the ears,'' the Information Center said in a statement. It added that the detentions ''prove Clinton returned home from his China tour empty-handed.''

''What we said about President Clinton's policy of constructive engagement with China was accurate, that the Chinese government will not work with the free world to improve human rights because they are a brutal communist dictatorship,'' said Lian Shengde, a student leader of the Tiananmen Square democracy demonstrations in 1989 and now the head of the Washington-based Free China Movement.

Like Lian, most of the detained dissidents took part in the 1989 protest movement. Wang Youcai, Wang Peijian and Cheng Fan were students in Beijing. Wang Donghai and Wu Gaoxing staged sympathy protests in Hangzhou.

Wang Youcai spent four years in prison and Wang Donghai and Wu Gaoxing three years in the nationwide crackdown that followed the military's brutal quelling of the protests in Beijing.


LOAD-DATE: July 11, 1998

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