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Forced Sterilization Is Persecution, Court Says

•  Recent Cases     updated  2008/07/10 10:04


A Chinese citizen should not be returned to her homeland due to the high probability that she would be forcibly sterilized, the 7th Circuit ruled.

Xiu Zhen Lin, the mother of three, protested a decision by the Board of Immigration Appeals that she had not shown that China's "one child" policy was "implemented through physical force or other means that would amount to persecution."

The board made this ruling despite a letter from the government of Lin's village, which stated that she would be subject to sterilization if she returned. The appellate court disagreed with the board's rationale.

"The implication," Judge Posner wrote, "is that if a government tells a religious heretic we are going to fine you $1 million for your heresy and if you cannot pay we will burn you at the stake, and the heretic cannot pay and therefore is executed, the burning of the heretic would not, in the board's view, amount to persecution."

A 2006 State Department report showed that China's policy is strictly enforced in Lin's home province of Fujian.



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