UN rights body calls on China to release rights lawyer

March 28, 2011 08:18

BEIJING - China's best known rights lawyer, missing for nearly a year, is being detained in violation of international law, a United Nations human rights body said in a statement made public on Monday, and it called for his immediate release.

The whereabouts of Gao Zhisheng, a Christian lawyer who helped defend members of China's banned Falun Gong spiritual group, have been unknown since April last year, when he resurfaced briefly after being abducted from his relative's home in Shaanxi province in early February 2009.

The UN working group on arbitrary detention said China's government should "provide for reparation of the harm caused" to Gao, who has previously claimed he was tortured in detention.

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