One of three citizen journalists to have been detained in Wuhan in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak has now re-emerged after missing for two months.
In a video uploaded to social media on Wednesday, Li Zehua, 25, also known to his followers as Kcriss, recounted the events surrounding his disappearance on February 26 and his treatment in the weeks that followed.
Following a 30-second video which Li posted to his Youtube channel on the fateful day of his disappearance, Li managed to return to his apartment in Wuhan after shaking off a white SUV that had been chasing him down the street.
Shortly afterwards, what appeared to be a medical crew in hazmat suits appeared in his apartment block, knocking on door after door, ostensibly to perform swab tests on residents.
Li switched off all the lights in his apartment, hoping for them to pass him by as he stayed in silence.
Hours later, the crew came back to knock on his door, and entered his apartment, identifying themselves as police officers.
These moments were captured in a Youtube livestream that lasted nearly four hours long.
Li was taken to a police station where he had his fingerprints taken and DNA samples collected before he was interrogated for some 24 hours as part of investigations into whether he was disrupting public order.
In a video uploaded to his Youtube channel before he was detained, Li chanced upon a man that collapsed on a street in Wuhan and went to the crematorium pretending to seek work.
On February 27, he was informed by a senior police officer that they had decided not to charge him. However, as he had been to such high-risk locations as the crematorium and been in contact with other potentially infected individuals, the decision was made to put him under quarantine, “for his own safety and the safety of other people”.
Li said he was made to hand over all his electronic equipment to a friend for “safekeeping” before he was placed under quarantine with his personal belongings and daily necessities.
During this time, Li said he was well-treated, was given three meals daily, and was able to watchXinwen Lianbo, CCTV’s daily evening news broadcast.
On March 14, Li was taken back to his hometown, where he was placed under yet another 14-day quarantine before eventually returning home on March 28.
Other citizen journalists missing
Another two prominent citizen journalists remain missing. Lawyer Chen Qiushi, 34, shot to national prominence after heading to Hong Kong to cover the anti-extradition protests in the territory.
He arrived in Wuhan just before the city went into lockdown and was able to visit various hospitals and conduct interviews with people who were directly affected by the outbreak.
Wuhan native Fang Bin, 47, filmed a video of corpses piled up at a local hospital that subsequently went viral on social media.
It remains unclear where the two are being held.