The European branch of the Coalition to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong (CIPFG-Europe) was announced to be officially established at a press conference on the afternoon of February 3rd 2007 in front of the Chinese Embassy in London. More than 40 important members of government and prominent members of society from European countries have joined CIPFG-Europe, including members of parliament, senators, lawyers, clergymen, chairmen of NGOs, doctors, writers, journalists and officials from major enterprises and governments in over a dozen countries.
Groups, organizations and politicians from over a dozen European countries sent letters to express their support for the establishment of CIPFG-Europe, including the United Nations Association of World Citizens, the International Society for Human Rights in Germany, the Eurotransplant Foundation in Holland, Association Supporting Chinese Human Rights in Sweden, European Parliament Vice President Edward MacMillan-Scott, Members of Parliament in the UK, Holland and Belgium, and Irish medical experts.
Below is the Statement of Support from a member of the Eurotransplant Foundation in the Netherlands.
February 1st, 2007
Statement of Support
The conclusions of the investigative report by David Kilgour and David Matas of July 6th 2006, together with already existing allegations by e.g. Amnesty International, have caused great concern among the international organ transplant community, since they provide credible evidence for the accusation that the Chinese authorities are implicated in a systematic persecution of Falun Gong followers, and that prisoners from that movement (together with other executed prisoners) are exploited as organ donors. The updated report of Mr. Kilgour and Mr. Matas of January 31st 2007 has further substantiated these alarming findings.
The transplant community has always strongly condemned the harvesting of transplantable organs from prisoners, during life or after execution, as an immoral practice that goes against every code of ethics relating to organ transplantation. This not only because there can be no guarantee that prisoners will choose to be donors by their free will and with valid consent, but also because the organs resulting from this practise are now sold to foreign patients at a high price. In this way desperate patients worldwide are also exploited. This undesirable commercialization of organ donation now appears to be linked to systematic violations of human rights, in which the judicial system corruptly cooperates with hospitals and the medical profession to gain huge profits at the expense of human dignity.
There is reason to believe that several thousand organ transplants per year are performed in China, made possible by this immoral and criminal practice. Transplant physicians and organizations around the world cannot but strongly protest against this outrage. The fact that followers from a peaceful movement such as Falun Gong are victimized as conscience prisoners and exploited as organ donors underlines the inhumane character of this organ harvesting system.
Now is the time for the Chinese government to give unrestricted access to independent investigators and observers, such as representatives from CIPFG, to visit prisons, mental institutions, labour camps and hospitals. The aim should be to put an immediate end to human rights violations and to make organ donation and transplantation in China transparent and consistent with universal ethical guidelines.
I pledge to support CIPFG's dedication, together with the transplant community, to achieve this.
Eurotransplant Foundation member
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