• Kyodo


The Justice Ministry on Wednesday approved a request by U.S.-based Chinese democracy activist Wei Jingsheng to see a doctor in Tokyo even though he was denied entry to Japan, citing “humanitarian” reasons, sources said.

Wei, 57, has been detained at an airport hotel since arriving at Narita airport in Chiba Prefecture on Saturday from New York. Wei informed the ministry that his diabetes was worsening and for several days sought permission to receive a checkup at a Tokyo hospital, the sources said.

Wei had planned to attend an event Sunday in Tokyo marking the 18th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre. He requested a permit to enter Japan under a system that allows transit passengers to remain up to 72 hours in the country, chiefly for sightseeing. Wei had been due to fly to Guam on Tuesday.

But the Immigration Bureau refused him entry because he planned to attend the rally, an activity that it says was not allowed under the terms of the transit permit. Wei was forced to cancel his plan to deliver a speech at the event, held to commemorate the 1989 Tiananmen democracy crackdown.

According to the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau, Wei was not in violation of the immigration law as long as he remained at his designated hotel and didn’t contact anyone while he waited for the airline he flew in on to make arrangements for his flight out.

Twice imprisoned in China for political reasons, Wei was temporarily freed in 1997 after 18 years behind bars. He then moved to the U.S.

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