I first met Zhao Ming, the Trinity Post Graduate, in July 1998. My first impression was that he was very bright and kind, and therefore, I asked him if he would like to come to Ireland to study. He then got an offer to study for a Master's Degree in the Department of Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland in late 1998 after I came back from my holiday in China. Zhao Ming arrived in Dublin on 17 March 1999, St Patrick's Day. Ming started his diligent study in his major soon after his arrival. He enjoyed the rich information and good research environment in the west. Also he fortunately made some good friends in the college, such as Mr Jim Dowling, a colleague in the same department. Jim is involved in the TCD [Trinity College, Dublin] meditation society, and because of similar interests, Jim introduced Ming to the meditation society and also helped Ming to establish a class to teach Falun Gong exercises. Everyone who met Ming said he was so nice, gentle, and always smiling.
Ming, two other friends and I shared a house in Charlemont on Griffith Avenue. We also established a very good and solid friendship, because we all practised Falun Gong and shared interests in other things. Ming was also a very good cook; he often cooked very fine Chinese food for all of us and enjoyed helping others. Because Ming had benefited so much from the practice of Falun Gong, he wanted to share it with everyone, so they could get the same benefits. He and others of us went to the Mind-Body-Spirit exhibitions in both Dublin and Cork. Ming went to Galway City to promote Falun Gong, and he even went to Merrion Square to teach every day at lunchtime. Everything he did was completely voluntary.
However, when Ming suddenly heard that the Chinese government banned Falun Gong and started to persecute those good innocent people, many of whom were his good friends, teachers and colleagues, he could not bear reading those torture reports every day and imagining how those people were suffering. He felt helpless being here; therefore, he decided to go home and take a look at what was wrong there. Ming was a very righteous and honest person. He didn't believe that the government was so brutal, so he went to the State Appeals Office to tell the truth that he knew of the persecution, as well as his true experience of practicing Falun Dafa. He probably never expected that he would be arrested just for speaking the truth to the government, or that he would be jailed indefinitely. But anyway, he was arrested in January 2000, and his passport was confiscated; later he was put under house arrest. He had to go to Beijing to make a living, as he couldn't come back to Ireland to continue his studies. Unfortunately, Ming was arrested again in May 2000 at a friend's home; later in July, he was sentenced to Tuanhe Labour Camp in suburban Beijing for a year. He should have been released in May of this year, but again--as we expected--his sentence was extended another 10 months simply because he would not give up his belief in Falun Gong. Ming's only crime was to practice Falun Gong, which teaches people to follow 'Truthfulness, Compassion Forbearance,' and also makes people gain better health.
All Ming's friends miss him a lot as he's such a good, kind hearted and truthful person. I still remember how he liked eating meat, the nice meals he cooked for us and other friends, and his gentle and handsome smile. I cannot imagine how he looks now after being severely tortured for over 15 months. Ming was a slim but healthy young man. I don't how he would look after being deprived of sleep and food, and made to work long hours of hard labour.
By Dai Dongxue
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