It’s a story that causes a reaction of “THIS STILL HAPPENS?!”: A woman, eight-months pregant is dragged out of her house and forced to abort the foetus for violating China’s one-child policy.
Al Jazeera’s Melissa Chan went to meet Luo Yanqua and Xiao Aiying at the hospital, where Aiying was waiting for her foetus, now dead by lethal injection, to be removed. The couple already have one daughter, but accidentally conceived a second child. When they found out, at the end of the first trimester, they decided to keep it – thinking that the worst they’d get is a hefty fine.
But just a month before the baby would be due, family planning officials in their county found out and dragged them to the hospital. “There were many men surrounding my wife,” Luo Yanqua says in the video. “They held her arms behind her back and pushed her head against the wall. Checked her stomach… and I don’t know if they were trying to give her a miscarriage right there and then.”
While forced abortions have been documented in rural areas, most famously by (now jailed) human rights activist Chen Guangchen, who exposed Shandong officials’ illegal mandatory sterilizations and abortions, what makes Luo Yanqua and Xiao Aiying’s story different is that they live in a city. Xiamen, to be specific. Why, out of all the couples to flout the one-child policy, they were chosen to undergo such a horrific procedure, is unclear.
It should be noted that the central government states that forced abortions are illegal – but if the performance yardsticks Beijing imposes are enough that even officials in generally wealthy cities are taking these measures, what the hell use is the law?
The Al Jazeera video after the jump, along with a heart-rending longer interview with the father.
The interview with the father:
Can’t see the videos above? Maybe you need a vpn. Click here to visit Shanghaiist’s VPN sponsor, Freedur.