UK: European Friends of Falun Gong holds Seminar in Houses of Parliament

On 10th September 2003, European Friends of Falun Gong held a seminar to discuss human rights and the suppression of freedom of belief in China. The seminar was held in the UK Houses of Parliament and was very successful. It was attended by 7 Lords, 8 MPs, a Baroness and many other people who are concerned about the welfare of people in China and sympathise with the persecuted Falun Gong practitioners.

After an informal lunch, which allowed seminar attendees to chat and gave UK Falun Gong practitioners a great chance to let important dignitaries know more about the persecution Falun Gong in greater detail, the seminar presentations began. This part of the seminar was chaired by Iain Luke MP, a Member of UK Parliament who has worked hard for the human rights of Falun Gong practitioners. The first speaker was Lord Avebury, Vice-Chairman of the Parliamentary All-Party human Rights Group, who has been a supporter of Falun Gong practitioners for several years. He was followed by Lord Thurlow, a Falun Gong practitioner who let the audience know the saddening news of the Jiang regime’s recent announcement that they will increase their persecution of innocent Falun Gong practitioners after recent legal action launched against the regime leaders.

Lord Avebury
Colum McAndrew
Andrew Clarke
Zhu Baosheng

The next speaker was Amnesty International’s London representative Colum McAndrew who let the audience know that China is regularly breaking at least 22 of the 30 covenants in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. He stated the need for a “significant improvement in human rights in China.” The next speaker was the general Secretary of the International Association for Religious freedom Mr Andrew Clarke, who ended his speech by stating “I would like to see Falun Gong’s cause totally strong on all fronts and backed by all people.” The final presentation was given by UK Falun Gong practitioner Zhu Baosheng, whose sister Zhu Baolian is imprisoned in a forced labour camp in Beijing. His appeal for help to rescue his sister touched the hearts of the listeners.

The afternoon ended with open debate on human rights in China. Issues touched on included the Jiang regime’s failed attempts to export their persecution to Hong Kong through Article 23 legislation and their use of lies and deceit to cover up the SARS virus, which claimed many lives in China before its existence was officially recognised. An interesting and informative afternoon was had by all.

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