Beijing: A former lawyer detained for more than six months due to reporting on the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan has been fitted with a tube so she can be force-fed after she went on hunger strike, her lawyer said.

Zhang Zhan, 37, was apparently unable to pull the tube out as her arms were restrained. She was arrested in May and accused of “picking quarrels and stirring up trouble”, a charge often used against government critics and activists in China.

Ms Zhang attempted to report the virus outbreak on social media and a streaming account. She is now being held at a detention centre near Shanghai. She was formally charged with spreading false information in November. Her lawyer, Zhang Keke detailed her deteriorating condition in a blog post after visiting her.

Zhang Zhan.

Zhang Zhan.

“She was wearing thick pyjamas with a girdle around the waist, her left hand pinned in front and right hand pinned behind,” he wrote.

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