Letter from British Playwright to the BBC

Tinch Minter is a Cambridge-based playwright. After learning about the Jiang regime’s brutal persecution of Falun Dafa practitioners, she chose to portray her sympathy and concern by composing a play for UK Dafa practitioners. The play is about Bao-Lian Zhu who has been imprisoned in a labour camp in China and is the sister of a UK practitioner, and Zhu Yongjie who is also suffering cruel persecution in a Chinese forced labour camp and is the fiancée of another UK practitioner.

This play was performed in Cambridge city centre on Saturday February 15th. Here is a copy of a letter sent by Tinch Minter to the BBC before this event took place.

Since July 1999 Falun Gong practitioners in China have been persecuted with jail sentences, torture, brainwashing and in some cases execution. Falun Gong or Falun Dafa is an exercise regime not unlike yoga or Tai Chi and can be practised either at home or in public places. When Jiang Zemin discovered there were more practitioners than members of the Communist Party he banned the movement. Last Sunday a group of British practitioners performed dances, songs, pieces of music etc in Leicester Square, pretty well all day in driving rain. I should also say the members have no organisation - except emailing each other, they take no payment for teaching the system and although there is a leader, Mr Li Hongzhi, who founded the exercise regime and its principles of Truth, Compassion and Forbearance he plays no further part. [...]

This Saturday a group of practitioners drawn from all over the UK will gather in Cambridge just as they did last weekend in London. They will perform a short play which shows how people are arrested in China for their beliefs, how they are brainwashed and tortured and cut off from the outside world. Two practitioners will be performing whose nearests and dearests are currently in police detention. No-one knows where. No one knows when or if they will ever be released. Dr Weiguo Xie has recently been awarded a PhD from Manchester University: his fiancée Yongjie Zhu disappeared on 4th November last year. Bao-Sheng Zhu, a London resident, discovered his sister Bao-Lian Zhu has also been imprisoned for practising Falun Gong.

I must also say last Sunday the two performers playing the imprisoned women laid on the rainy pavement - so determined were they to play their parts to the utmost to show British audiences what conditions are like. They are literally performing for other people's lives and it shows in the intensity of their dedication, enthusiasm and sharing - in over 20 years working in theatre I have never worked with a group prepared to rehearse till 3 am!

We are performing this SOS Rescue play outside the Guildhall to try to alert people here to the persecution in China and to gather signatures to help pressurise the Chinese government. Any assistance you can give us in publicising this event and the urgency of the message will be highly appreciated.

Tinch Minter

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