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Tiananmen Square survivor arrested during China protest faces no further action

Published 29/10/2015

Tiananmen Square survivor Shao Jiang was arrested by police (Tibetan Community UK)
Tiananmen Square survivor Shao Jiang was arrested by police (Tibetan Community UK)

A Tiananmen Square survivor who police were accused of manhandling during Chinese president Xi Jinping's state visit to the UK will face no further action after his arrest.

Shao Jiang, 47, was seized outside Mansion House in central London on Wednesday October 21, shortly before the president arrived at the venue.

Footage showed Mr Jiang standing in the road waving banners before a group of officers dashed over and dragged him away.

Two other women, Sonam Choden, 30, and Jamphel Lhamo, 33, were also arrested at the scene.

When asked about the three anti-China protesters, Scotland Yard said they had been "released from their bail with no further action".

Labour's Fabian Hamilton also raised a point of order with Speaker John Bercow about the three protesters.

Campaigners accused the Metropolitan Police of deliberately targeting Tibetan demonstrators to try to please China.

Policing Minister Mike Penning was labelled "shameful" on Monday for refusing to comment on the Metropolitan Police's handling of Mr Jiang and the two other anti-China protesters.

The Conservative frontbencher told MPs he did not want to "jeopardise" ongoing investigations into Tiananmen Square survivor Mr Jiang, Ms Choden and Ms Lhamo.

Mr Penning said the Met Police rejected any suggestion they acted "inappropriately".

Mr Hamilton, asking an urgent question, described how television footage shows Mr Jiang stepping into the road to display two placards protesting against China's human rights "abuses".

But he was tackled to the ground by five Met Police officers, Mr Hamilton added.

Allan Hogarth, from Amnesty International, said last week: "The video that has emerged looks like a very heavy handed response to a peaceful demonstration."

Johanna Zhang, 42, wept as she described the video of police dragging her husband away. "I was heartbroken when I saw it and it makes me quite furious," she said.

"It was quite a physical, violent attack by the police and he was just standing there holding pieces of paper."

She added: "I never thought this could happen in Britain, I guess I was naive.

"I think the police are just trying to please the China state visit.

"They are doing it in such a disgusting way, it's really unbelievable."

Mr Jiang was imprisoned for 18 months in China after surviving the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989.

He was also arrested in 1995 before coming to the UK in 2003.

Last week, the Met Police confirmed a man and two women were arrested at around 4.30pm on Wednesday.

"Officers on the security operation for the visiting Chinese president arrested a man in the Bank area to prevent a breach of the peace," a spokesman said.

"Two women were arrested nearby shortly after, also to prevent a breach of the peace.

"All three were further arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit threatening behaviour."

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