1. General Introduction
From 2000 to 2002, Zhao Ming, currently studying in Ireland, and Chen Gang, currently staying in the United States, experienced cruel spiritual and physical torture at Beijing's Tuanhe labour camp because of their belief in Falun Gong. On November 21st 2003, they met again in Europe and gathered with thirty nine other Falun Gong practitioners from various countries to sue sixteen Chinese government officials and policemen who have persecuted Falun Gong, including five cadre members who directly persecuted Zhao Ming and Chen Gang in the Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp.
The lawsuit this time is based upon a penal code, which means that the defendant could face life imprisonment if adjudged to be found guilty in a German court.
The five cadres in Tuanhe Labour Camp whom Zhao Ming and Chen Gang accuse are:
- Jiang Wen-lai, the Chief Officer of the Management Department in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp (the original captain of the 2nd battalion);
- Yang Fenghua, the Chief Officer of the Education Department in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp.
- Jiang Haiquan, the Assistant Officer of the Education Department in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp, the original instructor of the 3rd detachment);
- Du Qiwen, the Deputy Chief of Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp;
- Zhuang Xuhong, the Deputy Chief of Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp.
Zhao Ming was a graduate in computer science in Qinghua University. He once worked as a manager in the computer and network centre in the Ziguang Group. In March 1999, he went to study for a Master’s Degree in the Department of Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. That same year, he went back to Mainland China during his Christmas break with the hope of calling for an end to the Chinese authorities’ irrational persecution of Falun Gong. He was, however, illegally detained. His passport was withheld by police after he went to appeal for Falun Gong in Beijing. He was then prevented from continuing his studies in Ireland. On May the 13th 2000, he was arrested in a dormitory when visiting a classmate in Beijing. After being detained for about one month, he was sent to the Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp. He was illegally detained here for another ten months. Under great pressure and support from the international society, Zhao Ming was released on March the 12th 2002 and was able to return to Ireland to continue his studies. He continues to strive to expose the Jiang Regime’s persecution of Falun Gong.
Before going to the United States, Chen Gang was a logistics manger at the Beijing branch of the Carlsberg Beer Group. In July 1999, after the start of the Jiang regime’s persecution of Falun Gong, Chen Gang’s house was twice searched, his telephone was monitored, and he was kept under surveillance for long periods of time. In November 1999, Chen Gang was detained for thirty days as he went to exercise his rights to talk about his experiences as a citizen. In June 2000, he was charged with the crime of disturbing social order and was sent to Hertun Labour Camp for a year. This was later extended to eighteen months because he insisted on practising Falun Gong. As a result of appeals from Chen Gang’s family in the United States, he and his wife eventually arrived in the U.S. on July 18th 2003.
Zhao Ming and Chen Gang both experienced cruel torture by those at “management level” in Beijing's Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp. For example, they were given electric shock torture by several high-voltage electric batons, were not allowed to sleep for more than ten days, were brutally beaten, and were tied up with their heads and legs bent down. They were then positioned under a bed and were pressed down with people sitting on top of them. There is more than just physical persecution; spiritual persecution also occurs. For example, Falun Gong practitioners are attacked and abused in attempts to force them to give up their belief. When Chen Gang recalled his painful experiences, he said, “Ever since Jiang employed the state machinery to persecute Falun Gong, I lost an excellent job and my family has been torn apart. I was locked up in the labour camp for no reason and was deprived of dignity and human rights. I experienced humiliation and oppression. I spent painful days and nights, being treated worse than a slave. Despite staying in such an hell-like environment, those treacherous, deceitful, and evil-minded police did not let go of me until they destroyed the last bit of dignity and pure belief I had in my heart. They forced me to become some kind of villain that looks down upon himself, they stained my personality and soul, and they abused my hope for beauty and wisdom so that I was deeply trapped in regret, self-blame, and disappointment. It was just like a crowd of evil beings torturing me and laughing at me over there, 'You deserve to stay in the hell! You deserve to be humiliated and manipulated by us. You have no way out!’"
Zhao Ming thinks that the persecution of practitioners' belief in Truthfulness, Benevolence, and Forbearance is not solely a Chinese issue; instead, it relates to the entire human race. It’s one of the main reasons why he and other Falun Gong practitioners filed the lawsuit against the sixteen Chinese government officials led by Jiang. “For such persecution of Truthfulness, Benevolence, and Forbearance, a righteous spiritual belief, this also brings harm to the entire human race.” If man has no righteous belief, humanity will die out eventually. So, it definitely is not an internal issue solely related to China. From my own experiences of being persecuted, this is not an issue of one region, nor is it an issue of individual policemen, but nationwide terrorism led by Jiang’s Regime. He is the one who harms the Chinese people, and the one who really brings calamity to the nation and to the people."
2. The analysis of the crimes committed by Jiang Wen-lai, the Chief Officer of the Management Department in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp, Yang Fenghua, the Chief Office of the Education Department in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp, Jiang Haiquan, the Assistant Officer of the Education Department in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp, Du Qiwen, the Deputy Chief of Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp, and Zhuang Xuhong, the Deputy Chief of Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp.
Within the German legal system, it is mentioned that a lawsuit is to be based upon Article 220a of the Penal Code in Germany (an amendment to the former article, suitable for use of all cases before July 30th 2002) and Article 6 of the German International Criminal Codes. The basis of the definition of genocide by these two articles is based upon Article 2 of the “The Treaty of the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide”, Article 4 of the “former Yugoslavia’s Agreement of the International Criminal Court”, “Article 4 of the Agreement of the special International Criminal Court in Rwanda”, Article 6 of the “Agreement of the Roman’s International Criminal Court”, and “international justice precedent”. In general, genocide refers to:
"Any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethical, racial or religious group, such as killing members of a group, causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of a group, deliberately inflicting on a group, conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part."
The lawsuit also states two dimensions of this persecution – physical and spiritual torture: “We can see from many cases that murderers who carry out cruel torture and brutal corporal punishment on purpose, systematically target Falun Gong members…It reveals the intention to destroy Falun Gong, a group with its own characteristics of belief in society, in various ways and in every method to completely transform Falun Gong practitioners…During the lockup period in the labour camp or prison, the police tried all types of methods to brainwash Falun Gong members by using concocted materials. At the same time, they conducted cruel torture so that Falun Gong practitioners would give up their belief and completely break away from any relationship with Falun Gong. If they do not give up, physical and spiritual torture continues and may be increased. If they do not give up at all, they can be tortured to death.
2.1 The physical torture of Zhao Ming and Chen Gang in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp
According to Zhao Ming and Chen Gang’s testimony, the policemen’s physical persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp was done “purposely and systematically”. In both of their testimonies they mentioned that they were cruelly tortured because they refused to be transformed i.e. to defame or criticise Falun Gong, and to guarantee not to practise Falun Gong anymore. In addition, the transformation rate directly relates to police welfare and rewards, which reveals that it is not behaviour from any individual, but orders from the top. The purpose is to carry out cruel torture to transform Falun Gong practitioners."
From top to bottom, “deliberate and systematic” persecution
Chen Gang’s testimony: "When I arrived at Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp, Jiang Haiquan was the “trainer” of the 3rd section. He once threatened me with violence to my face and to transform all Falun Gong practitioners as long as they were assigned to his team. As this wicked person was a daring vanguard in persecuting Falun Gong, he was awarded a 10,000 to 20,000 yuan bonus by the Legal Department and the Labour Education Bureau. He instigated those blackguards in the labour camp to physically punish me, torture me, and even backed them up. It is this man who did not allow any of us to sleep for fifteen days, including Qinwei, Huang Jian, and myself. We also were made to do heavy work and suffered physical punishment during the daytime."
"Why did the policemen spare no efforts in performing cruel things? First of all, they are also victims of the rumours spread by the Chinese Communist Party. Besides, the Jiang’s Regime and the 610 Office have combined persecution of Falun Gong practitioners via brainwashing and transformation with the promotion of government officials, policemen, their wages, bonuses, and welfare etc. This forces them to conduct the persecution and to disregarding anything and everything else. Take Falun Gong practitioners in the labour camp for example: for each transformed Falun Gong practitioner, the police may get a bonus of 1,000 yuan. If the transformation is not successful before a due date or if a transformed person returns to Falun Gong, 500 is deducted from the policeman’s wage."
Both suffered from electric shock treatment because of their firm belief in Falun Gong
Chen Gang’s testimony: "One evening in late October 1999, a policeman whose first name is Shi called me to his office and shocked me with electric batons all over my body. Once in a while after the electric shock, he would stop to ask me whether I would give up practising Falun Gong. I refused and he continued to shock me. After about an hour of this electric shock treatment, many areas of my skin were covered with blisters or appeared charred, including my head, neck, and arms."
Two days before Zhao Ming was released, he experienced similar treatment: “In the end of February 2002, two weeks before the end of my prison term; they didn’t allow me to sleep and let me watch TV which turned out to be a ploy. All of a sudden, a wicked policeman pushed me into the office. Upon entering the office, I saw a bedstead on the ground with many canvas straps onto it. There were five policemen, including Jiang Wen-lai, Yang Fenghua, Jiang Haiquan, and two policemen from the fortification class. I knew once I saw all of these that they were preparing for an electrocution session. They first threatened me. After I rejected, they started to tie me to the bed via my feet, legs, and my arms. After I was tied up, they threatened me again, asking if I was going to transform. After my rejection, they took out a bundle of electric batons and started to distribute them amongst each other. The electric batons were long. In addition to the two electrodes, there was also spiral metal surrounding them, so that shock could be extended to a longer range. They used at least six electric batons on my whole body and I started to go into a violent muscular spasm. They stopped once in a while to continue to threaten me to ask would I be transformed. One of the policemen from the fortification class was good at this. He held an electric baton on each of his hands and moved them along my chest in parallel. He used the electric baton with spiral metals and I felt the electric shock in my upper body. I was out of breath and my throat started to burn like fire. I bit tightly on the strap crossing my mouth and tried hard to breathe. After a while, one of my legs became cramped.
This reveals two dimensions of the persecution: physical and spiritual. “It reveals the intention to destroy Falun Gong, a group with its own characteristics and belief in society, in using various ways and any method to completely transform Falun Gong practitioners.”
2.2. The spiritual torture on Zhao Ming and Chen Gang
In reports about Falun Gong practitioners persecuted in China, we often see the term, “transformation”. The methods and effects of “transformation” conform to what is written in the lawsuit, “The intention is to destroy Falun Gong, a group with its own characteristics and belief in society.”
The nature of “transformation” - Hidden
Chen Gang’s testimony: “'Transformation' is the Jiang regime’s and the 610 Office’s goal in persecuting Falun Gong. It is in fact to make someone write something that says they will give up practising Falun Gong, or even insult and dishonour Falun Gong and its creator. The 610 Office set up a clear index of “transformation” for labour camps. The index is mainly used to evaluate the performance of labour camps. In addition, the 610 Office and the so-called “Anti-wicked religion association” directly participate in the research and the initiation of the persecution, in which materials are organised into booklets and distributed via internal channels to each labour camp. In the labour camps, a series of methods are used to brainwash everyone, where different methods target different people. To achieve their goal, they spare no effort in forcing a person to write material against their will and they do not consider whether it’s appropriate. It causes the destruction of human spirituality, dignity, and morality."
The methods of “transformation”: focus on weak points to crack people up
Chen Gang’s testimony: “For example, the policemen threaten the timid with intimidation and violence; they induced them by deceit and pretend to be good by promising to decrease his sentence. For those who do not understand Fa principles deeply enough, they play with lies and confuse you in order to make you believe that to insist in practising Falun Gong is against the Communist Party and against the government. If you are worried about your family, they shake your will by purposely mobilising your family members or making up lies to cheat you. If you are afraid of pain and fatigue, they make you do things that are painful and tiring. Or if you cherish your body, they physically torture your body intentionally. Anyhow, they will not stop, they persecute you in a specific area. If a practitioner insists on practising Falun Gong, they keep changing their “helpers” to speak sarcastically, to laugh at you, and to abuse you. The purpose of personal attacks and humiliation are to make you lose self-confidence. They further expand the physical persecution and torture so that they can take the opportunity when you are extremely exhausted, physically and spiritually.”
If none of the above methods take effect, they will employ so-called “not completely transformed” people to interfere. Though these people compromise under pressure, they still think that Dafa is good. They would like to continue to practise after leaving the labour camp. Being afraid, however, they try to defend their “transformation” in every possible way to force you to give up your belief against your conscious just like them. Once practitioners accept such “transformations”, the policemen will employ another groups of people who have been “completely transformed” to ensure that the transformation is strengthened. They force you to continuously learn materials about “transformation”, to write and to hold criticism meetings, etc Those materials slander Master Li, twisting and mis-quoting Master Li’s articles, and spreading rumours about Falun Gong, etc. Each time you write materials against your will, each time you attend the brainwashing activity, you are then further away from consciousness, morality and justice. The more you do the less sensitive you become. You’d give up belief voluntarily, to make up excuses to deceive yourself and others and to cater to others ridiculous point of view. Examples like this in the labour camps are seen everywhere. If all these do not work, the wicked policemen will unload and reveal their true nature completely to adopt a series of ruthless methods for bloody persecution, such as cruel torture, violence, gangster methods, and the illegal extension of your sentence by faking crimes.
“Transformation” makes those being transformed hopeless and inextricably bogged down
Zhao Ming’s testimony: "This time, they treated me with electric shock for half an hour. I’ve got a thought in my mind: Let me suffer now. I can expose them after I go out. As I did not keep up righteous thoughts, I yielded to the evil. This not only brought a bad influence to Dafa but also left a serious black mark on my cultivation practice. A lot of Dafa disciples asked what my most painful experience was in the labour camp. This was the most painful thing for me. I declare seriously here: My heart and belief in Falun Dafa have never changed. Whatever I wrote against Dafa during my stay at the labour camp was not from my heart. All are null and void. What happened to me is verification that the wicked government officials persecute Falun Gong practitioners by cruel torture, brainwashing, and the deprivation of basic human rights. I hope this results in the international society paying attention to this. The wounds left by the cruel torture will recover gradually in time; however the spiritual persecution brought about by cruel torture may well accompany a person for the rest of their life.
The results of “transformation”: Away from Truthfulness, Benevolence, Tolerance; bragging and worship of violence; and schizophrenia in the end
Chen Gang’s testimony: I clearly saw those who completely turned against Dafa become inferior to gangsters; they frequently scold and struck out at people just to demonstrate how completely they had become transformed. They even gave up their dignity, personality, and morality to fight for a mouthful of something tasty, to get off doing jobs, and hear praise from policemen, etc. What they demonstrated are disgraceful manners, viciousness and shamelessness. What those people reflect is the nature of wicked persecution: to turn those who wholeheartedly hope to become good people into gangsters who admire violence. I think in my mind, “Which exactly is the wicked religion? Isn’t the Chinese Communist Party the most wicked religion with the most destructive power controlling people with violence and deceit. Isn’t it irrational persecution and control of people? I said to myself, “I just want to be different from these people. I want to be a good person. No matter how bad I become, I want to abide by Master Li’s instruction and to follow the direction of “Truthfulness, Benevolence, Compassion”. Because of this thought, I tried my best to struggle in the dark with my body with one thousand boils and a hundred holes.
It’s a pity that some suffered mental disorder as they accepted the ridiculous view points, did not follow the instruction of Falun Gong, and couldn’t spiritually reconcile deceit and pressure. I personally witnessed six people who suffered from mental disorder after transformation, including one of my best friends, Zhu Zhiliang. Originally he was a very smart engineer. Afterwards however, he couldn’t even recognise his own parents or wife.
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