With righteous support from the people of Iceland, the 70-plus Falun Gong practitioners who had been stopped at the airport and held at a school officially entered Iceland with dignity in the late afternoon of June 11. According to a partial count, these practitioners came from the United States, Canada, Taiwan, Denmark and Australia.
Deceived by the Jiang regime's slanderous propaganda and placed under great pressure by Jiang's unscrupulous tactics, the Icelandic government decreed a short while ago that Falun Gong practitioners were forbidden to enter Iceland during Jiang's visit. On the morning of June 11 local time, more than 70 practitioners from all over the world were detained at the Reykjavik Airport after admitting they were Falun Gong practitioners while going through customs. They were then sent to a local school for detention.
On the same day, the Icelandic media gave extensive, positive reports about Falun Gong. The media also reported on the situation of local Falun Gong practitioners and those from other countries, including Ms. Lilian Staf of England and Joel Chipkar of Canada. The local media covered the practitioners' meeting with Icelandic immigration officials with a photo report. On the same day, the media also focused on the public outcry by various organizations in Iceland opposing the government's giving in to the unscrupulous methods used by the Jiang regime to apply pressure.
On June 11, the Icelandic people expressed widespread sympathy and support for Falun Gong practitioners. In the afternoon, 200-300 local residents held a protest in front of the school building that held the Falun Gong practitioners. They wore yellow-coloured clothing, posted banners on their cars supporting Falun Gong, and spoke to the police politely but firmly, "Aren't you arresting Falun Gong? We are just like Falun Gong practitioners, then why don't you arrest us?" They even imitated the position of Heshi (palms held together in front of the chest as a gesture of respect) as Falun Gong practitioners and tried to enter the school to endure the detention alongside the practitioners.
Some of the local residents participating in the protest said, "Isn't it true that someone doesn't like yellow clothing? Then we will all wear yellow clothing, and every home will hang Falun Gong banners. If the Falun Gong practitioners coming here are all detained, then we will go in their place [to protest]."
Many staff members working at the airport asked the Falun Gong practitioners for flyers, listening attentively to the practitioners' introduction of Dafa. They even privately told the practitioners that they were against such unreasonable treatment of Falun Gong. One man working at the airport told the practitioners privately, "You are doing the right thing. Even though you have been detained, the media is reporting on you positively, so righteousness has won." One woman said to the practitioners publicly, "Jiang should just stay in China; our Iceland is a country of peace."
Tourists from around the world were shocked and puzzled by the ban on Falun Gong practitioners entering Iceland. They also pointed out that it must have been due to pressure applied by the Chinese government behind the scenes.
Thus in the late afternoon of June 11 with the righteous support of the Icelandic people, the 70-plus Falun Gong practitioners previously detained by the airport police entered into Iceland openly and with dignity. They plan on conducting a peaceful appeal, introducing Falun Gong, and clarifying the truth by exposing the persecution in China.
Meanwhile, 8 Falun Gong practitioners were denied boarding by Iceland Air at Baltimore International Airport and 4 were turned away at Minneapolis International Airport. Five American citizens were among these practitioners. The staff at the airline explained that they had received orders to deny boarding and a list of names from the Icelandic government that afternoon. Some staff members expressed that they were quite uncomfortable with carrying out this order, and speculated quietly that this was the result of actions by the Chinese government behind the scenes.
According to insider reports, the Icelandic government will hold an emergency Congressional meeting to re-examine its policies regarding Falun Gong. A heated debate is anticipated.
Facing the various forms of interference by the Jiang regime, the Falun Gong practitioners from all over the world are unmoved. They continue to focus their energy on proactively clarify the truth to relevant government agencies and officials.
Chinese version available at http://www.minghui.org/mh/articles/2002/6/12/31635.html
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