United States: Falun Gong Practitioners Gathered in Front of French Consulate

On February 2, about forty Falun Gong practitioners held a press conference in front of the French Consulate to New York at 74th Street and 5th Avenue at noon. They also delivered an open letter from Falun Dafa Association in New York to French Consul Richard Duqué. The letter expressed their concern with the arrest of Falun Gong practitioners by French policemen and exposed the overseas extension of the persecution and framing of Falun Gong by Jiang's regime.

Dozens of Falun Gong practitioners quietly gathered in front of the French Consulate, holding banners saying "Defend the Freedom in France," "Bring Jiang to Justice," etc, in both Chinese and English. Mr. Noah Parker, host of the press conference, read the open letter to Consul General of France to New York by all Falun Gong practitioners in the Great New York of East American Falun Dafa Association.

Mr. Parker described the incident of improper arrest, detention and brutal treatment of Falun Gong practitioners in Paris during the Chinese Chairman Hu Jintao's visit to France. Dozens of Falun Gong practitioners from the U.K., Germany, France, Taiwan and Norway were distributing Falun Gong truth-clarification materials on streets in Paris when policemen arrested them, examined their passports, confiscated their materials and detained them for four hours. Some practitioners were taken to police stations just for wearing a yellow scarf. Some were doing nothing or wearing nothing to indicate they were Falun Gong practitioners. None of them did anything illegal. The only reason for the arrest was that they were wearing clothes inscribed with the words, "Falun Dafa" or they were with Falun Dafa practitioners.

Mr. Parker said the unlawful arrest of Falun Gong practitioners during Hu's visit to France was shocking. "Although such an approach is common is Beijing, we are stunned to see it in the capital of France, because France has been known for the pursuit of freedom, equality and love of humanity. We request an official explanation by the French government and their apology for the unfair treatment of Falun Gong practitioners."

Falun Gong practitioners delivered their open letter and truth-clarification materials to the French Consul. An official received Falun Gong practitioners and all the materials.

During the press conference, Ms. Eliana Chinn, a representative of Falun Gong practitioners, read an open letter to the French government co-signed by eleven human rights lawyers in the U.S. Germany, Taiwan, Finland and Sweden. "The unlawful arrest, detention and brutal treatment of Falun Dafa practitioners during the Chinese Chairman Hu's visit to France was a serious violation of democracy, freedom and basic human rights. We hope the French government will make an immediate investigation on this incident."

The conference host answered questions from reporters, who paid great attention to the experience of American citizens Dr. Viviana Galli and Dr. Sunny Lu. They were wearing clothes with printed words "Falun Dafa" or Falun Dafa marks when they were arrested. When they asked the French policemen the reason for their arrest, the reply was, "You have yellow clothes on. Yellow is illegal today."

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