James Reynolds, the BBC reporter stationed in Beijing, has finished his three year term. He wrote a final post on his blog “to take you through a few of the things I’ve seen during my time here. Not a representative portrait – just some of the stories that have stuck with me.”
“Shortly after I arrived, I paid my first visit to a part of Beijing called the petitioners’ village – a run-down collection of alleyways in which some of the country’s most desperate people live while they try to get the authorities to hear their appeals for justice.
“I met one man who told me of his son’s murder, for which no-one had been convicted. The father sat on a bed he shared with two others and shook with sobs as he showed me pictures of his son’s skeleton. He wanted to give me a copy of his petition – 40 pages of documents stapled together and sealed inside a brown envelope. He hoped that I might be able to help. I warned that there was little that I could do, but he insisted that I accept it.”