Myanmar Consulate General in Hong Kong
Room 2421, Sun Hung Kai Centre,
30 Harbour Road, Wan Chai Hong Kong
Dear Mr. Myo Chit:
We are writing to urge the Myanmar government to immediately release a permanent Hong Kong resident who has been wrongfully imprisoned in Rangoon since January 2002.
On 12/12/2001, Mr. Chan Wing Yuen, a 70-year-old man, was arrested in Rangoon for displaying a small-sized banner that read Truthfulness-Compassion-Tolerance in a street.
Mr. Chan is a student of Falun Gonga peaceful Buddha School meditation practice currently facing brutal persecution in Chinaand the three words on the banner expressed the principle of Falun Gong. In anticipation of a visit by Chinas President Jiang Zemin who is responsible for the death of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners, Mr. Chan decided to display the banner on the side of a road that he believed Jiang would travel on.
On 1/31/2002, Mr. Chan was secretly sentenced to 7 years in prison without legal representation or the presence of his family members. Instructed by and in the presence of officials from the Chinese embassy, local police had demanded that Mr. Chan give written promise to renounce his belief in Falun Gong in exchange for his freedom. Mr. Chan refused.
Mr. Myo Chit, Mr. Chans action was peaceful and did not cause any disruption to the public order. The banner conveyed a message that could not have possibly offended anyone. The heavy jail sentence secretly handed to this 70-year-old man was clearly unlawful, and is absolutely not acceptable by todays international standard for human rights. Furthermore, allowing Chinese officials to interfere with Myanmars legal system betrays Myanmars own commitment to the practice of an active and independent foreign policy, as well as the claim of not aligning itself with any bloc on international issues except to consistently stand on the side that is right.
For the last three and a half years, Falun Gong has been severely and unjustly persecuted by the Chinese Communist Regime. Hundreds of thousands were tortured in prisons, labour camps and mental hospitals with many more fired from jobs or expelled from schools. Details of over five hundred torture-to-death cases of Falun Gong students have been documented. A year ago, an internal government figure put the number of deaths at above 1,600. Another source placed the estimate in the neighbourhood of 7,000.
International organisations including The United Nations and Amnesty International have issued protection status to, or organised rescue campaign for Falun Gong practitioners. Government bodies including the United States, Canada and the European Union have also called on the Chinese government to respect religious freedom and end the persecution.
We understand that Myanmar wishes to maintain a friendly relationship with China. However, abiding by domestic and international laws and doing whats right morally should not harm a true friendship. As a matter of fact, it is no longer a secret that many leaders in the Chinese Government disapprove this persecution of Falun Gong as the practice is deeply rooted in ancient Chinese culture and has brought tremendous physical, mental and spiritual improvements to tens of millions of Chinese. Many senior officials were students of Falun Gong. The ageing and insecure President Jiang is by far the primary source of oppression.
It is important to note that the communist China is the only country where the practice is banned. Falun Gong is practised and welcomed in over 60 countries around the world. In the past few years, Falun Gong and its founder have received more than 800 proclamations and Honor's worldwide.
It is an undeniable fact that Chinas President and some of his followers have committed a serious crime against Falun Gong. Histories as well as Buddhas teaching tell us that leaders (or anyone) having no regard for human lives will be brought to justice in due course, and that those who side with the injustice will have their own consequences to face. We hope that the Myanmar Government will have the courage to stand up to temporary political pressure, and do whats right for the country and the people by immediately and unconditionally releasing Mr. Chan.
Thank you for your attention.
Hong Kong Falun Gong Practitioners
Sharon Xu 9263-4150
Sophie Xiao 9108-2057
KAN Hung-cheung 9876-3530
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