The Swedish Citizen of Chinese descent Gui Minhai was sentenced to 10 years in prison on 24 February 2020, reports Ningbo Intermediate People’s Court in a statement on its website, reports Reuters.
Gui Minhai was condemned to prison on the charges of having illegally provided information to foreign Intelligence Services.
In 2012 the Chinese-Swedish writer and publisher opened a bookshop in Hong Kong, selling books that the Chinese government had banned – resulting in an arrest in 2015 that severely strained the relation between China and Sweden.
The Swedish government has repeatedly criticized the Chinese government for the arrest and treatment of the Swedish citizen, while the Chinese ambassador in Sweden commented that Amanda Lind, the Swedish Minister of Culture and Sport, in the future would be unwanted and unwelcome in Chine, if she participated in the event of Svenska PEN, as the Swedish Gui Minhai, who was detained in a Chinese prison at the time, was nominated for the Tucholsky award. The minister ignored the warning. Gui Minhai was awarded the Tucholsky award in November 2019.
25 February 2020 the Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ann Linde, appeared on the radiosprogram P1-morgen, where she reported that the Swedish government would demand the release of Gui Minhai.