Mainland dissident Chen Kaipin has disappeared after returning from Taiwan, where he had a brief encounter with Taiwanese opposition leader Su Tseng-chang, a friend said yesterday.
Chen – a Hangzhou-based member of the banned China Democracy Party – phoned a friend on his arrival at Xiaoshan airport in Hangzhou on March 6 to say he was being held “at an office”, fellow activist Chen Shuqing said.
“He must be being held by one of the [government] departments,” Chen Shuqing said. Several fellow members of the China Democracy Party have since been interrogated by the security services over the motives of Chen’s trip to Taiwan, he said.
Chen Kaipin’s friends and family have been unable to contact him since he was detained. Chen’s mother said yesterday she had not heard from either him or the police.
Chen Kaipin travelled to Taiwan on a two-week cycling tour and participated in a rally on February 28th in Taipei in memory of the victims of the 1947 protests against KMT rule which were brutally put down, according to a Radio Free Asia report.
Chen Kaipin told RFA that he spotted Su Tseng-chang, chairman of the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party, at the rally and he shouted to him across the crowd.
“Please could the DPP support us and our pro-democracy movement,” Chen urged him. He said Su shook hands with him and encouraged him to continue his work.
But later, mainland police phoned him and accused him of “colluding with Taiwan independence forces”, Chen Shuqing said.
Chen Kaipin also tried to meet President Ma Ying-jeou, but a planned meeting was cancelled by Ma’s office, Chen Shuqing said. Ma’s office did not respond to a request for comment.
In a letter to Ma dated March 2 that has been posted online, Chen Kaipin said he was “braving the inevitable cost of being jailed” by asking for a meeting. He said he was hoping Ma could support the pro-democracy movement on the mainland.
The Hangzhou Public Security Bureau did not respond to a reporter’s request for comment.