A teacher from Nanjing, He Peirong has recently been at the forefront of the campaign against the extrajudicial incarceration of Chen and his family — a risky endeavor that has exposed her to threats and beatings. She was among the first to break the news of Chen Guangcheng’s flight from house arrest after secretly driving the wet and wounded activist to Beijing. But in helping Chen escape, He — who also goes by her English name, Pearl — temporarily lost her own freedom. She was detained by Chinese authorities the day after Chen entered the U.S. embassy and interrogated by police for a week before being allowed to return home.
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