Name: Xu Zhi
Address: Baiquan County, Qiqihar, Heilongjiang Province
Date of Most Recent Arrest: September 29th, 2009
Most Recent Place of Detention: Daqing Prison
Persecution Suffered: Sleep deprivation, forced labour, beatings, being hung up, imprisonment, solitary confinement, torture, physical restraint, home ransacked, interrogation, detention
Key Persecutors: Secretary of the Political and Legal Committee at Baiquan County in 2007, Officer Li Yanpeng from Baiquan County Police Station
Mr. Xu Zhi, a Falun Gong practitioner from Baiquan County, Qiqihar City, Heilongjiang Province, has faced repeated persecution by the Chinese Communist regime since 2000. In 2008 he was sentenced to seven years in prison. He is now incarcerated in Daqing Prison. The following statement was made by his wife.
I had a happy family before the Chinese Communist regime started its suppression of Falun Gong in 1999. My husband, Xu Zhi, has been arrested, detained, sentenced to prison, and brutally tortured many times. There is no longer joy or happiness in my home. My family has been destroyed as a result of China's persecution of Falun Gong.
My husband has been practising Falun Gong since before 1999. As a result, he has been very healthy and kind. It is a wonderful cultivation practice that has benefited not only my husband but also the people around him and the society as a whole. I could never understand why the Chinese government would persecute him for a practice that has turned him into such a wonderful person. Our poor three-year-old has not seen his dad since he was three months old.
The following is a detailed account of the persecution of my husband that I have compiled for the world to know. I beg those who read this report to help get my husband released from prison, bring those who are responsible for the persecution to justice, and restore my happy family.
In 2000, Xu Zhi was sentenced to one year in a forced labour camp. After he was released, he was constantly followed by the local police. Li Yanpeng, a local police officer, would come to our home and harass my husband when each and every politically sensitive day approached. Finally Xu Zhi was forced to leave home and hid in a different city where he found a part-time job.
At around 1 p.m. on September 29th, 2007, he and a fellow practitioner returned to Baiquan County from Harbin City by bus. Police officers from the township and the county stormed out of their police cars. The secretary of the local Political and Legal Committee, followed by the officers, appeared without a warrant. When Xu Zhi demanded the reason for his arrest, the police called for additional back up. Eventually, more than 20 officers were dispatched to arrest him and the other practitioner.
Their goings on drew a large crowd. To conceal the fact that they were arresting two Falun Gong practitioners, an officer told the crowd, "We are arresting them for binge drinking." When Xu Zhi heard the lie, he shouted "Falun Gong is good" so that the crowd would know the police were arresting them for practising Falun Gong. The officers didn't want to draw any more attention, so they quickly forced Xu Zhi and the other practitioner into the police car.
Once the officers had them in the Baiquan County Detective Police Division, they started to beat them brutally and then bound them to metal chairs with handcuffs. Xu Zhi had injured four fingers while resisting arrest and an officer tortured him by brushing the wounds with a small brush. To cause additional pain, the officers handcuffed him with one arm over his shoulder and the other forced up behind his lower back. Next, an officer put a steel helmet over his head and started to beat on the helmet with a baton.
But that was not the end of the torture my husband was subjected to that night. The officers removed his shirt and repeatedly poured cold water over him with the windows open. They turned on a fan to blow more cold air at him. When he was dry, they would pour water over him again. After a few repetitions, the officers decided to wrap him with a wet towel and left the fan blowing on him. [Note: Qiqihar City is at the about same latitude as Vancouver.] When the sun went down, the officers taped newspaper over the windows so no one could see what they were doing. They then handcuffed one of his hands over his head and left him suspended in the air.
Baiquan County police immediately reported the arrest to the 610 Office (an organisation of special agents just for persecuting Falun Gong) at the city and provincial levels. The officers from the provincial level of the 610 Office were even more brutal. They poured mustard oil into Xu Zhi's nose. After one day and two nights of torture, Xu Zhi and the other practitioner were transferred to the Daoli Detention Centre in Harbin City, where they were subjected to even more torture. The officers there ordered inmates to beat Xu Zhi brutally.
As the wife of a Falun Gong practitioner, I was not spared from the Chinese Communist regime's persecution.
On the morning of October 4th, 2007, a police car arrived at my home in Taipingzhuang, Shuangcheng County, Harbin City, while no one was at home. They pried open the door and confiscated over 1,000 yuan1 in cash, a DVD player, an audio recorder, and our marriage certificate. Next they went to my parents' home in Yongsheng Township, Shuangcheng County, to arrest me. My parents were not home at the time. I was alone with my three-month-old baby. The officers tried to grab my baby and drag me into the police car. I tried to keep hold of my son to protect him from the police, but they grabbed him and made him cry. I yelled for help, and my neighbours quickly came when they heard me. The police quickly left as they did not have an arrest warrant. Although the police did not succeed in arresting me and my baby, they had left deep bruises in the shape of fingers on my baby's back.
In May 2008, the Daoli Court in Harbin City brought Xu Zhi to trial but denied him the legal right to defend himself. The "trial" consisted of a judge reading the "charges" and the sentence. Xu Zhi was sentenced to seven years in prison and transferred to Hulan Intensive Training Centre.
The officers at Hulan Intensive Training Centre ordered prison inmates to torture Xu Zhi to try to get him to renounce Falun Gong in writing. Those prison inmates, who had been sentenced to life or the death penalty, were promised reduced sentences if they were successful. Therefore, they would stop at nothing to make Xu Zhi renounce Falun Gong.
They repeatedly beat my husband from head to toe with rubber hoses. Due to the excruciating pain in his head, he had to sleep at night without leaning his head on any surface. The pain in his legs made him limp. His hands were so swollen that they looked like buns. Even his fingernails were broken off as the result of the brutal beatings.
But even that was not the end of the long litany of torture my husband suffered. The prison inmates pushed my husband on the ground and forced his arms backward to inflict pain. They continued doing this to him until he retched. He was in so much pain that he could not sleep at night. He was ordered to sleep next to an inmate with tuberculosis. On the nights he did not have to sleep next to the inmate with T.B., they would not allow him to sleep. After all of this, Xu Zhi still did not submit to their demands, so the inmates used a pair of pliers to pinch his toes and stuffed pepper seeds into his penis. In addition to the cruel torture, Xu Zhi was made to perform hard labour. He was made to get up at 4 a.m. and start working at 5. When he failed to finish his work assignments, he would face additional beatings and would be made to squat with his head down until 11 p.m. or midnight.
In July 2008, he was transferred from Hulan Intensive Training Centre to Daqing Prison. In November 2009, he decided that he would no longer wear the prison uniform because he had not committed any crime. As a result, he was put in solitary confinement for seven days. The cell did not have any heat despite the cold climate in Harbin City. He was denied a coat and shivered in the cold in the middle of November. I repeatedly asked to visit my husband, but Daqing Prison refused to let me.
I had a happy family and a wonderful husband. But my husband has been taken away from me and our child because he practices Falun Gong and has refused to renounce his spiritual faith. I would like to urge those who read this report to extend their help to rescue him from prison so that we can be reunited.
1. "Yuan" is the Chinese currency; 500 yuan is equal to the average monthly income of an urban worker in China.
Chinese version available at http://minghui.ca/mh/articles/2010/4/15/221584.html
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