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AICAHK strongly condemns the recent arbitrary detention of intellectuals and critics in mainland China including this week’s arbitrary and unexplained detention of the respected visual artist Ai Weiwei and sent a letter of protest to the Chief Executive of the HKSAR and other officials on 7 April 2011.
8th April 2011


To: The Chief Executive of the Hong Kong SAR Mr Donald Tsang

Dear Mr Tsang

Re: Arbitrary detention of visual artist, Ai Weiwei and other critics on the mainland

The International Association of Art Critics-Hong Kong (AICAHK) strongly condemns the recent arbitrary detention of intellectuals and critics in mainland China; occurrences that have escalated since the awarding of last year’s Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo, including this week’s arbitrary and unexplained detention of the respected visual artist Ai Weiwei.

We demand that these arbitrary detentions cease, that all detainees who are unjustly held for exercising their right to freedom of expression are immediately released and that their rights are respected as outlined under the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and in The Universal Declaration of Human Rights ratified by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1948 and fully endorsed by AICAHK, as one of the members of the International Association of Art Critics based in Paris under the patronage of UNESCO. The following Articles from The Universal Declaration of Human Rights include:

Article 19. Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Article 27. (1) Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits. (2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.

We in Hong Kong are protected by the rule of law and our Association similarly believes that the mainland must immediately uphold moral standards to protect its people and the precious civil right of freedom of expression.

We request that you urgently forward this letter to the Public Security Bureau and other relevant authorities on the mainland.

Yours faithfully

John Batten
President of AICAHK on behalf of its Members



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