Washington, DCToday, Congressman Gregory W. Meeks, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, issued the following statement:

"Today marks the one-year anniversary of the death of Li Wenliang, the 34-year-old Chinese doctor who in December 2019, tried to raise alarms on the coronavirusSilenced by the Chinese government and accused of "making false comments" Dr. Li and his untimely death from the coronavirus remind us of the heartbreaking consequences of stifling freedoms of expression and access to timely, accurate information.

"Regrettably, too many governments worldwide continue to use COVID-19 as an excuse to silence dissent and crack down against basic freedoms. Such attempts to take advantage of this global health emergency blunt our collective response to the crisis and jeopardizes everyone’s safety and wellbeing.

"We remember Dr. Li’s braverand honor his sacrifice, as well as that of the countless front-line workers who selflessly work to protect our health and security during this pandemicThe United States will continue to work with our allies and partners to fight the coronavirus and defend human rights and freedoms to ensure that everyone, everywhere has the information to hold their leaders accountable."

# # #