On August 6th, the Coalition to Investigate the Persecution of Falun (CIPFG) Belgium Chapter held a press conference in Brussels to call for action to end the persecution of Falun Gong by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Renowned human rights lawyer George-Henri Beauthier and a victim of direct persecution attended the press conference.
A representative of the CIPFG first gave a speech on behalf of the organization, saying, “Today, CIPFG is holding press conferences simultaneously in 12 countries to call for actions to end the persecution of Falun Gong. There are many Falun Gong practitioners being detained in labour camps in China, and these practitioners have been targets of all kinds of inhumane abuses. In addition, from December 2007 to June 30th 2008, the Chinese Communist Regime had arrested more than 8000 practitioners in the name of Olympic Security.”
At the press conference, the representative also released a guideline for reporters who to enter China to report the Olympic Games. The guideline detailed location and direction of prisons and labour camps where Falun Gong practitioners are being held. Some of them just are miles away from the Bird Nest. The CIPFG urged foreign media outlets to investigate the persecution behind the Olympics when they are in China.
|George-Henri Beauthier, Belgian human rights lawyer and member of the CIFPG|
George-Henri Beauthier, renowned human rights lawyer and a member of the CIPFG commented that human rights condition in China was very bad and united actions were needed. He said: “To let people know about the persecution of Falun Gong in China, we have done a lot of work. Today, nobody can say that he or she doesn’t know about the persecution. We can’t rely on one group to protect all these practitioners. Therefore, it is very important to unite all the groups. I am going to continue to work with lawyers around the world to help end this persecution.”
Mr. Beauthier showed cases in which Belgian practitioners were persecuted by the Chinese Communist Regime. Those cases include phone harassment and computer attacks. He pointed out that these cases testified how the Communist regime was infringing on the freedom in Belgium. While the Belgian juridical institutions are investigating these cases, he said that the Communist regime had refused to cooperate.
Mr. Beauthier also mentioned renowned Chinese human rights attorney Gao Zhisheng. For speaking out for Falun Gong, Gao has been severely persecuted and his whereabouts is unknown. Beauthier hope that Belgian officials will help rescue his Chinese colleague.
|Practitioner Liu Hongchang displays a poster at the press conference|
At the press conference, practitioner Liu Hongchang narrated his personal experience in the persecution. In 2001, Liu was arrested in Beijing and his bone fractured due to torture. In the same year, he was sentenced to 5 years in prison. While he was in custody, 4 of his relatives died due to sorrow, fear and depression as the authorities continued to harass them.
Mainstream media outlets including the Belgian National Press (Belga) and Radio BFM attended the press conference. On the same day, many Dutch and French media reported the press conference.
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