Intimate portrait of Chinese AIDS activist Liu Ximei, driven by compassion, optimism and an incredible fighting spirit. She is the voice of the many poor farmers who contracted AIDS from blood transfusions in the 1990s. Liu is strong, but can harassment, obstruction and her illness make her give up hope?
‘Humans will always fight until the last day of their lives,’ says Liu Ximei. But Liu’s fighting spirit is severely tested when she gains more and more influence as the voice of the victims of a big public health scandal. In the 1990s, millions of poor Chinese farmers were encouraged by the government to sell their blood. However, many donors and recipients became HIV infected from contaminated medical equipment, resulting in a large-scale AIDS epidemic.
Liu Ximei contracted AIDS from a blood transfusion when she was 10. With her support group and her shelter (‘Ximei’s House’), she helps AIDS patients who are widely discriminated and ostracised. The Chinese government wants to cover up the scandal, and as Liu Ximei attracts international attention, her work becomes difficult and even dangerous. Portrait of an incredible woman, produced by Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei.
Ximei has been selected for the Activist competition and is shown at the Movies that Matter Festival 2020. Unfortunately, activist Liu Ximei will not be present for Q&As at the festival, due to her activism she is currently unable to leave China.