China releases human rights activist detained since December 2021

Prominent Chinese human rights activist and former lawyer Tang Jitian says he was released by Chinese authorities on Saturday.

His whereabouts had been unknown since he was detained in December 2021.

Tang had supported people who were forcefully deprived of their land and homes by the Chinese authorities, and was disbarred in 2010 for criticizing the government.

He announced his release through his supporters on Sunday.

Tang's daughter, who was studying in Japan, fell critically ill with meningitis in April 2021 and has been unconscious since then.

Chinese authorities prevented him from leaving the country to see his daughter, citing national security concerns.

Tang said in his message to supporters that his detention was illegitimate, and that his priority is getting treatment for his daughter.

Chinese authorities have made no reference to Tang's detention or release.