Angry Chinese parents who congregated at Beijing’s National Health and Family Planning Commission to protest a vaccine scandal that emerged in March, have complained of intimidation and arbitrary arrest by security officials.
The citizens of China have demanded answers after an illegal vaccine ring was discovered by the government in April 2015, which had been operating since 2011 and had distributed $88 million worth of dangerous vaccines to the public.
Dozens of parents whose children were harmed by the tainted or improperly stored vaccines have filed lawsuits in Beijing as protests over the nationwide vaccine scam continue to grow.
The indictment calls for action to prevent similar tragedies from happening in future, and for ongoing financial payouts to help with medical bills and living expenses for the victims, some of whom have been left severely disabled since being vaccinated
“Our children have suffered varying degrees of harm and disability as a result of immunization injections” the lawsuit reads, according to Radio Free Asia (RFA).
The World Health Organization (WHO) says the only danger from the tainted drugs is a lack of effectiveness. But that has done little to placate many parents, who are now being harassed for voicing their concerns.
“I had planned to take part [in the Beijing protests and lawsuits], but I was forcibly escorted home by officials from my hometown on April 13,” parent and activist Wang Liangqing told RFA on Tuesday. “Now they are watching us 24 hours a day.”
Another protester named Liu Lijun said, “Around 1,000 people were taken to [a detention center in neighboring province] Jiujingzhuang … from around 700 families.”
Yi Wenlong, 47, from Shanxi province, told the South China Morning Post that he had just been released from 30 days of detention, simply for urging the public to buy a newspaper that had published an in-depth report into the vaccine scandal.