Sweden: More People stand up to Defend the Human Rights of Falun Gong Practitioners

Since practitioners exposed the Gothenburg’s Chinese consulate’s attempts to stop a local radio station from broadcasting “Falun Gong Time” by using Sino-Swedish relations as a threat, people from various parts of Sweden have expressed great concern about the issue. Various media organisations continued to report on the news for days. Parliamentary members, professors of law and human rights organisations have commented on the issue one after another by condemning this act by the Chinese consulate that disregarded Swedish law and violated a democratic country’s freedom of speech.

However, the Acting Foreign Minister who has just taken office was not able to recognise the nature of this evil persecution. On the 1st of October, while answering a question posed by parliamentary member Cecilia Wigström concerning what measures the Foreign Minister would take to request the Chinese consul to respect Swedish law, including the freedom of speech, he said that the Chinese consul must abide by Swedish law and that both the Chinese consul and Falun Gong practitioners have the right to express their opinions. Two days after the Acting Foreign Minister had given such a reply, he was fired. However, such a reply showed that the lack of recognition of the truth caused some repercussions from the people.

The director of the Gothenburg local radio station immediately made the following statement: “As the Director of the Gothenburg local radio station, I was worried about the reply by the Foreign Minister. In the eyes of the acting foreign minister, our freedom of speech is secondary. The Chinese consul was not expressing his opinion. He was using the name of friendship and cooperation to tacitly threaten us to stop the programme. He even contacted the responsible agency to try to cut off our financing resources. This is an act that violated Swedish law. Therefore, I was greatly shocked by the fact that the acting foreign minister could not recognise that our freedom of speech was being seriously violated. What costs will we pay next?”

A Swedish citizen, who was highly concerned over the issue, said in a letter written to the acting foreign minister, “The brutal persecution of Falun Gong practitioners by the Chinese government has been verified by international human rights organisations and the media for quite some time. They spread lies everywhere to falsely slander Falun Gong practitioners. A civil servant in Sweden thought that this was a hate crime. If you allow a Nazi to spread lies about the Jewish people, you will no doubt think that it was manufacturing hatred and was a fabrication.”

Translated from Chinese at http://www.yuanming.net/articles/200310/24858.html

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