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  Four herders released on bail, two still detained
December 27, 2013
New York
The People's Court of Ongniud Banner tried six Mongolian herders on charges of "sabotaging production and management" (SMHRIC photo)  
Since last week, four of six detained Mongolian herders, Mr. Jargalt, Mr.  Ulaanbar, Mr. Munkhbayar and Mr. Nasandalai, all from Bayannuur Gachaa (a gachaa consists of several villages) of Shinsume Sum (sum is equivalent to a township) in eastern Southern (Inner) Mongolia’s Ongniud Banner (“weng niu te qi” in Chinese), have been released separately from detention on bail.  No due process of law was followed in their release proceeding. Two other herders, Mr. Tugusbayar and the protest organizer Mr. Tulguur, are still being held in the Ongniud Banner Detention Center.

“Four of them have been discharged from detention on bail ranging from 5,500 yuan (approximately 1,000 $US) to 2,000 yuan (approximately 400 $US) as the time interval of 3 months elapsed since the case was transferred to the court,” Ms. Sarangowaa, wife of the detained herders’ leader Mr. Tulguur, told the Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Center (SMHRIC) in a phone interview, “what is disturbing is that the court did not issue a decision regarding their guilt or innocence.”

“My husband and Tugusbayar are still being held in the detention center,” Ms. Sarangowaa told SMHRIC, “no word has been heard either from the court or from the detention center about their situation. The court and officials of the government refused to give any legal explanation as to why the case remains undecided.”

According to Tulguur’s attorney, Mr. Zhou Guohua, the court must decide any case within 3 months of arraignment.

“The People’s Court of Ongniud Banner is violating the law,” Zhou told SMHRIC over the phone, “my client’s case must be decided within 3 months since it was transferred to the court in accordance with the relevant laws.”

“This is a lawless land where government officials are above the law,” Zhou said when asked whether Tulguur still pleads not guilty, “but we are determined to defend ourselves and maintain our innocence.”

“Do not get confused by the release of the four herders on bail. They were released from detention, but by no means are they free. The intention of the court by not giving a formal court decision is to maintain the authorities’ control over the herders indefinitely,” Mr. Zhou commented.

The six herders were taken away by police after a clash with Chinese workers from a state-run forestry company named Shuang He Forestry that illegally occupied their grazing land. After more than three weeks in detention and interrogation, they were formally arrested on June 24, 2013, for alleged involvement in “sabotaging production and management”.

On September 13, 2013, the Ongniud Banner Public Security Bureau transferred the case to the Ongniud Banner People’s Court to prosecute the six herders.

On November 13, 2013, the six detainees were tried by the Ongniud Banner People’s Court. Family members and attorneys of the detainees believe that lacking any legal basis for the charges against the six herders, the authorities carried out a sham trial as a “kill the chicken to scare the monkey” tactic to warn all Southern Mongolian herders that any resistance will be harshly suppressed.

For more information, please contact the following individuals:

Mr.Yang, head of Ongniud Banner People's Court: 0086-139-4766-8566
Mr.Hu He, chief judge of Ongniud Banner People's Court: 0086-158-4999-2399
Mr.Hurtsaa, governor of Ongniud Banner: 0086-135-0066-3986
Mr.Zhou Guohua, attorney of Mr.Tulguur: 0086-137-0476-9856
Ms.Sarangowaa, wife of Mr.Tulguur: 0086-139-4896-9360


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