Name: Zhao Qiumei
Occupation: Restaurant owner
Date of most recent arrest: March 27th, 2006
Most recent place of detention: Heizuizi Women's Forced Labour Camp in Changchun City, Jilin Province
Persecution suffered: Detention,physical constraint,beatings, forced feedings, drug administration, interrogation, torture, extortion, living under surveillance, brainwashing, home ransacked
Ms. Zhao Qiumei was detained and sentenced to a forced labour camp twice. Her husband Wang Jianguo was persecuted to death in the detention centre in Jilin City on April 10th, 2006. His body is still kept in the funeral parlour.
Below are accounts from Zhao Qiumei regarding the persecution of her husband and herself.
A few months after the persecution of Falun Gong started in 1999, my husband and I were living in a suburb of Beijing. The police arrested us after we had lived there for a few days. We were detained in the office for Jilin affairs in Beijing. A week later, all the Falun Gong practitioners detained there were sent to the detention centre. By then the practitioners had been detained for 15 days. After being transported to Jilin from Beijing, we were sent to the Jilin Detention Centre to be persecuted by the police.
Late in the afternoon of November 22nd, 2000, the Public Security Bureau in Jilin City of Jilin Province arrested over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners, including four of our family members. The police in the Changyi Division of the Jilin Public Security Bureau and the Hadawan Detention Centre arrested and imprisoned us in different cells. We were interrogated.
My husband was beaten by the interrogators and they didn't allow him to put on his outfit, even though the room was very cold. He was cuffed to the iron grill for the entire night and his hands became swollen. The next day, the officials sent my husband to the Changyi Division of the Jilin Public Security Bureau. Four days later, he was sent to the Huanxiling Forced Labour Camp in Jilin City. By that time, he had been persecuted for two years.
On the afternoon of November 10th, 2001, I stood in front of Jinshui Bridge by Tiananmen Square and displayed my banner "Restore the Reputation of Falun Gong." Plainclothes police officers from Tiananmen Square tore my banner and dragged me into their car. In the Tiananmen police station, they beat me until I lost consciousness and transported me to the office for Jilin affairs in Beijing. I stayed there unconscious for a day and a night.
After three to four days, police from Jilin came and transported me to the Shahezi Police Station in the Chuanyi region of Jilin City. At night, they forced me to stay in the detention centre of the police station. After staying in there for two weeks, I was sent to the Changchun City Forced Labour Camp of Jilin Province. I had previously been persecuted for two years in the forced labour camp.
On November 28th, 2001, once I arrived at the labour camp, I was immediately beaten by all the guards and two inmates in Team No. 1 of the camp, to the extent that I was not able to stand up. After beating me, they claimed that they would use 28 kinds of torture methods on me, and said, "If you still don't listen to us, we will make you taste what it is like to experience 28 kinds of torture methods." They then asked "reformed1" practitioners to take me away and try to "transform" me. They talked about their irrational theories all day long, played audio tapes for deceiving people, and had many meetings in attempts to "transform" me.
On March 5th, 2002, the Chinese Communist Party's TV station in Changchun City, Jilin Province, was sabotaged. An extensive search was carried out in Changchun City. People were arrested if they were Falun Gong practitioners. Liu Chengjun was tortured to death at that time. Many other practitioners were sentenced to prison for three to twelve years. Some were sentenced to forced labour camps for one to three years.
In the forced labour camp, the persecutors put the practitioners individually into an empty room and continuously played audio tapes, around the clock, slandering Falun Gong. They deprived the practitioners of sleep. Some of the practitioners could not forbear the torture and wrote "guarantee statements" promising to give up their beliefs, against their will.
Many of the practitioners living in my dorm refused to write the guarantee statements. However, by that time, I was the only one who persisted in not doing so. Soon after, I was transferred to Team No. 5 of the labour camp.
Once, imprisoned Falun Gong practitioners in each team wrote a note, "Falun Gong is good." The guards were very angry and wanted to find out who wrote the note. They took me to their office. Five of them beat me using handcuffs, two high-voltage electric batons, and three leather belts. They cuffed my hands behind my back and tied my feet using the belts. Wang Limei and Xiao Aiqiu slapped me with their hands and bamboo chips, shocked the sensitive places on my body including my neck, wrist and eyes. Wang Limei kicked me hard on my chest and right arm. They beat me using fists and feet for five to six hours. In addition, they tied me and imprisoned me alone.
My prison term was prolonged for an additional 25 days because I hung up a banner saying "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance." I was released on December 3rd, 2003.
In August 2005, I opened a small fast-food restaurant. Only six months after I started the business, on March 2nd, 2006, I was arrested again and taken to the detention centre in Jilin City, Jilin Province, by Tan Xinqiang and Wang Kai from the Nanjing Detention Centre in Jilin City, Jilin Province.
When I was in the detention centre, starting at 8:00 a.m. every day, the detention centre broadcast the regulations for detainees at an extremely loud volume for two hours. They also played them in the afternoon, including Saturdays. If any practitioners refused to wear the prisoner's uniform, or refused to recite the prison regulations, the authorities didn't allow anyone in the detention centre to take a break by taking a walk outside. The officials did this to instigate anger and hatred among the detainees so that they would have excuses to persecute practitioners.
On March 20th, 2006, the police in the detention centre interrogated me again. I wanted to see my husband. Under my strong request, they allowed me to see him. He was pulled and dragged to the interrogation room because he was too weak to walk. Seeing him extremely skinny, I asked him what happened to him. He said that his condition was from protesting against the police because he was innocent. He had not violated the law, but he was still imprisoned. Nevertheless, the police still brutally force-fed my husband and continuously persecuted him using all sorts of means until he was persecuted to death on April 1st, 2006.
On March 27th, 2006, I was taken to the Heizuizi Women's Forced Labour Camp in Changchun City, Jilin Province by Tan Xinqiang and Wang Kai from Nanjing Detention Centre. I was sentenced to a term of one year in the forced labour camp.
Once I arrived at the labour camp, they immediately gave me a physical examination. Although it was found that I had a hearing problem, they still accepted me in the labour camp.
Once I got to Team No. 5 of the labour camp, my heart problem emerged once each week. The officials were frightened and occasionally took me to the labour camp clinic for injections. They later were exhausted and came up with a wicked idea to make me work in a workshop. They said that as I could not be "transformed," it would be better to make me work early so that I could make some money for the team.
Therefore, I was forced to work in the workshop. Two collaborators once dragged me to the meeting hall to watch TV programmes slandering Falun Gong. Less than five minutes after arriving there, my heart problem emerged again, but team leader Wang Limei ordered the monitor to not allow me to lie down and pushed me up to sit up straight. The pain was beyond description. It was completely unbearable.
I was persecuted for a year in the forced labour camp. The persecutors had been deceiving me about the death of my husband. No one dared to tell me the truth, even upon by release from the labour camp. I got home on March 1st, 2007.
1. "Reform or Transform" Implementation of brainwashing and torture in order to force a practitioner to renounce Falun Gong. (Variations: "reform", "transform", "reformed", "reforming", "transformed", "transforming", and "transformation")
Chinese version available at http://minghui.ca/mh/articles/2009/10/12/210220.html
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