IMAGE: Sky News
WEIFANG, Shandong -- Liu Xinwen and her husband Zhou Guoqiang were sleeping soundly in their home at 4am last Friday when Family Planning Officials kicked down their door, dragged Liu to the People's Hospital of Fangzi District, and forcibly aborted her six-month-old child. Sky News, a UK-based global news outlet, reported the story with an in-depth TV interview with the couple, as well as a visit to the hospital where the forced abortion took place.
While showing the Family Planning Official's footprint on their front door, Zhou shared how 16 men and four women from the Family Planning Office held him down on the sofa while they they took his wife away. It took him five hours to track down her whereabouts, at which point the poisonous labor-inducing drug had already been injected into Liu.
The child, a boy, died the next day. Liu delivered the dead body two days later.
In the TV interview, Liu expereses her grief and pain:
"I miss him. I didn't get to see him," says Liu, fighting back tears. "I would be even more upset if I had seen him. Baby, I'm sorry. We were not meant to be. You rest in peace in heaven. We will pray for you. We hope your next life is better."
The Sky News report continues:
Several other images show the foetus. It is fully formed. "His nose, ears, mouth are all there." Mr. Zhou said. "It is a child that would have lived if not for the forced abortion. It's because of their cruelty. Look, his hand is very obvious."
Inside the hospital, we saw the room which is part of a fully functioning maternity ward; it is not a backstreet abortion clinic. We found just two members of staff. One refused to comment. The other, a young nurse, was reluctant and a little startled to find a foreign TV crew in her hospital.
"I don't know if it's forced or not. And I don't know the reason for it," she said. "This is a maternity ward; there are many reasons for abortions. I don't know the specific reason for this case and it's not my place to care."
The couple already have an older 10-year-old son, so when they found out they were pregnant with a second child, they hid their pregnancy for fear of a forced abortion. Zhou said that they were ready to pay the fine after the baby was born.
Read the Sky News report and watch the powerful video piece here.
Liu's late-term forced abortion took place in Shandong, a province notorious for its high rates of forced abortions and forced sterilizations. Chen Guangcheng, the blind attorney who escaped house arrest last year, is a native of Shandong and originally filed a class action suit on behalf of thousands of One-Child Policy victims. In November of last year, All Girls Allowed reported another forced abortion of a six-months' pregnant mother in Shandong.
All of this is taking place despite an official ban on late-term forced abortions in Shandong province, as well as a directive from the Family Planning Commission (now known as the Ministry of Health and Family Planning). These bans were put into place last summer following the high-profile case of Feng Jianmei, whose seven-month-old forcibly aborted child was captured in a photograph that shocked the international community.
All Girls Allowed Executive Director Brian Lee was interviewed earlier today by Sky News.
Chai Ling, the Founder of All Girls Allowed and a native of Shandong province, said: "We commend Sky News for their courageous reporting on this issue, bringing to light those things that the Chinese government would stay in the dark. Our hearts are grieved by this forced abortion, and we pray that God's everlasting arms would embrace Liu Xinwen and her husband today. We rejoice that through Jesus, we now have a way to heaven, and we affirm Liu's words that her child is in a better place today. In addition, we call upon senior leadership in the Chinese government to take note of this horrific and reprehensible act of brutality, and that they would take heed to abolish the One-Child Policy to prevent further bloodshed and heartbreak."
Right: Liu Xinwen at the hospital next to the bucket where her dead fetus was dumped.
Left: Zhou Guoqiang tears up during his TV interview.
All images from Sky News.