A female journalist imprisoned for reporting on the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan is currently severely "underweight" and needs to be released by the Chinese Communist Party immediately to get proper healthcare she desperately needs, lest she fail to survive the coming winter.

Breitbart reported that the Chinese citizen journalist Zhang Zhan is "close to death" from hunger strike based on warnings given by her family. The 38-year-old Zhang was made to "disappear" after being arrested by the CCP along with others.

Her arrest happened after she reported on the situation in Wuhan in China at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. A former lawyer, Zhang showed what was happening in the hospitals in Wuhan that was overflowing with patients in February 2020 through her mobile phone. She did so at a time the CCP denied allegations on the outbreak and stressed that it was in control.

Zhang, in a video report that happened to be her last appearance to the public, highlighted that the families of coronavirus patients along with journalists were harassed by the government from speaking out. She was one of those harassed and disclosed being physically abused for the recordings she was making because the communist government forbade exposing the outbreak.

"The government's way of managing this city has just been intimidation and threats. This is truly the tragedy of this country," Zhang said.

After disappearing in May 2020, the CCP put Zhang in arbitrary detention for seven months before she was tried for various charges that included "picking quarrels and provoking trouble," a typical accusation the CCP makes to justify unjust detention. Zhang was sentenced to four years imprisonment in December 2020, during which she did not plead guilty and in turn resulted in a harsher, longer sentence.

Zhang began her hunger strike when she was arrested such that she was in a wheelchair when she attended her closed-door trial in 2020. During that trial, lawyers said Zhang was almost unable to speak due to weakness. The lawyers also revealed that she was being forced fed through nasal tubes while in prison.

Zhang was able to speak to her mother on Oct. 28 through a video call. Her brother, through an interview with Radio Free Asia (RFA), revealed the deterioration in Zhang's health that to weep for her daughter. Her mother said that Zhang feels not cared for and that she can only resort to God and her belief.

"In her heart, it seems there is only God and her beliefs, with no care for anything else," Ju, Zhang's brother, told RFA.

"I don’t think she’s going to live much longer," Ju added. "If she doesn’t make it through the coming winter, I hope the world will remember her as she once was."

Reacting to these news, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have already called for the immediate release of Zhang. Amnesty International Chinese Campaigner Gwen Lee pointed out in a statement that Zhang should not have been imprisoned in the first place for she only reported the truth. The organization stressed the "appropriate medical treatment" Zhang needs in the light of her declining health.

"Zhang Zhan, who should never have been jailed in the first place, now appears to be at grave risk of dying in prison. The Chinese authorities must release her immediately so that she can end her hunger strike and receive the appropriate medical treatment she desperately needs," Lee said.

"The Chinese government's prosecution of Zhang Zhan, simply because she tried to uncover what was happening in Wuhan amid huge government secrecy about the pandemic, is a shameful attack on human rights," she added.

Readers are urged to pray for Zhang Zhan's healing and recovery, as well as her safety and unconditional release from unjust imprisonment.