His detention comes as China has been cracking down on human rights lawyers and activists. Over one weekend in July 2015, Chinese authorities netted more than 100 lawyers and human rights defenders across the country, including associates with the Beijing Fengrui law firm who later confessed to crimes on CCTV. Dahlin previously worked with one associate of Fengrui. More recently, several human rights activists and lawyers were charged with the serious crime of “subversion of state power,” which carries a life sentence.

Another Swedish citizen, Hong Kong-based bookseller Gui Minhai, remains in custody in Beijing after his suspected abduction from Thailand by Chinese authorities. Swedish officials are “very concerned about the detained Swedish citizen Gui Minhai. Our efforts to bring clarity to his situation and be granted the opportunity to visit him continue with unabated intensity,” the Swedish embassy said in its statement.

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