Wang Keqin has uploaded a very long post as a follow up to his earlier post (link is to our translation) about Tian Xi, his young friend who had been arrested and denied access to vital medication that keeps his AIDS symptoms at bay. Tian Xi was inflected with HIV via blood transfusion in 1996, and has been struggling to get compensation and treatment from the government more or less ever since.
After speaking in his office with Tian Xi’s mother, he describes in detail the series of events that led to Tian Xi’s arrest. Translating from his post, here is a general timeline: ((Formatting and emphasis are ours, not in the original text. I have also skipped parts and rearranged others slightly to make it more concise and clear.))
- July 23 – In Beijing, Tian Xi receives a text message from the Xincai county Party secretary Gu Guoyin. The basic message was: You’re a college student, you should know how to take care of things. Come home and we will resolve your problem. Come to my office and find me on Monday.
Tian Xi’s father said, “when the Party secretary texted Tian Xi, that was the first response we’d gotten in six years of petitioning [for compensation for Tian Xi’s medical treatments]. We really thought the government wanted to help resolve things. Tian Xi returned home [to Xincai county] immediately.”
- July 26 – On Monday, Tian Xi went to the Party secretary’s office as instructed, but was not able to see the secretary. A coworker said that secretary Gu was in a meeting.
So Tian Xi sent Gu Guoyin a text to inquire about it. Secretary Gu responded that Tian Xi should wait another week and come to see him on the next Monday.
- August 2 (morning) – The next Monday, Tian Xi went to the secretary’s office at 8:30 AM. But disappointingly, once again he failed to meet with secretary Gu, whose coworkers said that he was having another meeting.
- August 2 (afternoon) – After leaving the the county Party committee building, Tian Xi went to the the Number One People’s Hospital, the place where he had been infected HIV via a tainted blood transfusion.
“Tian Xi felt that he had been infected by the hospital, so the hospital couldn’t ignore him. So he said he would go to the hospital,” said Tian Xi’s father.
Tian Xi went to the office of Hospital Director Li Junzhou hoping he could borrow some medicine [the supply he brought from Beijing was running out], and request compensation from the hospital. Director Li told him that if he had a problem, he should contact the county government, that the hospital didn’t manage that sort of thing, and to get out of his office.
“Tian Xi was very angry,” his father said, “and he pushed the hospital directors things off of his desk and onto the floor. There was a computer, a fax machine, a phone, etc., later it was estimated at 3000 RMB of damage.”
- August 5-6 – Tian Xi went twice more to the hospital director’s office. Director Li avoided him, locking his office door and refusing to let Tian Xi in. In a rage, Tian Xi used something to block the eyehole in the Director’s door.
[Around 4 in the evening of the 6th,] shortly after Tian Xi got back from the hospital, he was taken away by police from the Gulv Town police substation. At that time, his mother was not informed why or about where he was being taken.
- August 7 – [Tian Xi’s mother receives official word of his crimes and his detention via documents given to her by the PSB.] At around noon, his family picked him up and took him home [because] his detention was postponed. But they were carefully watched, and his mother could not even use a public bathroom on the street without an officer following her.
- August 17 – At 6:00 PM, 20 police officers took Tian Xi away again. This time he was guarded by six men in the contagious disease room at the Number Two People’s Hospital; this continued for two days.
- August 19 – At around 1 PM, Tian Xi was moved to the county jail, his family was not made aware.
- August 22 – Tian Xi’s parents recieve a notice of detention four days later than the date written on the form: 8/18. In the place on the form that read “if the family was not notified of detention within 24 hours, please give a reason”, there was nothing written.
- August 24 – [At 9 AM, Tian Xi’s family receives official notification of his arrest on charges of damaging commercial property. The form is dated 8/22, but the date of his arrest is written as 8/23.]
- August 25 – According to Tian Xi’s lawyer Liang Xiaojun, he had already informed the Xincai county jail of his intent to appeal. [Tian Xi was also moved to the procuratorate]
- August 26 – Liang Xiaojun and Tian Xi met face to face and discussed the details of the case.
Interestingly, it seems Tian Xi shouldn’t be in jail at all, though he did commit a crime. According to Liang Xiaojun, the damage he caused was estimated at around 4000 RMB, but the prerequisite for criminal detention for destruction of property is damage costing 5000 RMB or more.
The bigger problem, according to Tian Xi’s mother, is that he wasn’t carrying much medication on him when he was arrested, and as a result, his symptoms are flaring up to a degree she described as “critical”. They have appealed to the county to lend him some medicine. Tian Xi told his lawyers he had been stopped twice from taking medication, but that he could hold out for half a month on what he had left.
Obviously, Tian Xi’s destruction of the hospital director’s things was rash and illegal (although apparently not as illegal as it’s being treated). On the other hand, it’s understandable after six years of being given the runaround instead of being compensated.