Ms. Ji Shujun, 55, is a Falun Gong practitioner and a former accountant of the Chengde City Tobacco Monopoly Bureau in Hebei Province. Ever since the Chinese communist regime launched the persecution of Falun Gong in July 1999, her employer and the local police have repeatedly pressured her to give up her faith.
Because she remained steadfast in her belief, Ms. Ji was subjected to many years of torture in several forced labour camps in Hebei Province. The torture included being shocked with electric batons, being left to freeze outdoors in the snow, and being brutally force-fed. Below is a partial account of the persecution she has suffered.
Deprived of Food and Brutally Force-Fed
Most recently, Ms. Ji was arrested while speaking to people about Falun Gong in Chicheng Township on June 25th, 2012. She was then sentenced to one and a half years of forced labour.
Ms. Ji was detained in Division No. 4 of the Shijiazhuang City Women's Forced Labour Camp.
Zhao Yuan, division chief, told her, “If you refuse to do labour, you won't be able to have better meals and will only get steamed rolls.” Ms. Ji didn't have normal food until the Chinese New Year of 2013.
One morning, Ms. Ji meditated with a few other practitioners. The guards ordered criminal inmates to stop their meditation with physical force and handcuffed the practitioners.
Another time, two people dragged Ms. Ji on her back from the third floor to the medical room on the first floor.
Ms. Ji eventually went on a hunger strike to protest the abuse. Subsequently, she was brutally force-fed many times. She remained on a hunger strike for about 50 days, calling for unconditional release of all Falun Gong practitioners.
The labour camp stopped taking in new prisoners in January 2013. However, the current detainees were not released at that time. The labour camp started releasing practitioners in batches in July 2013. At the end of July, only about a dozen practitioners and five prisoners were left.
One day during outdoor activities, three males and four female chiefs threatened Ms. Ji that if she didn't cooperate with force-feeding, she wouldn't have good consequences. Ms. Ji said, “I don't need force-feeding, I just need to go home.”
The four females then carried her to the second floor and forced her into a chair. The two males twisted her arms behind the chair. Two females then grabbed her by the hair and started force-feeding her, claiming that they were “saving her life.”
Ms. Ji responded: “If you really think for me, you should release me. Those criminals who have committed prostitution and burglary have been released. We are still kept here just because we tell the truth and persevere in our faith of Truth-Compassion-Forbearance [the main principles of Falun Gong]. You are violating the law as the law enforcement staff! What goes around comes around!”
The perpetrators were speechless. The four females took her back to her cell. Ms. Ji repeated all the way back, “Falun Gong is good! I want to go home!”
She was released the next day, on July 26th, 2013. However, her release was labelled “medical parole,” instead of being an unconditional release.
Tortured in Police Custody
Prior to the recent detention at the Shijiazhuang Women's Forced Labour Camp, Ms. Ji was incarcerated for two years at the Hebei Women's Forced Labour Camp.
She was arrested for talking to people about Falun Gong on September 1st, 2009. When she refused to board the police vehicle, she was dragged inside and brutally beaten.
Ms. Ji was tortured on the tiger bench1 at the criminal division of the local police department. The next day, she was sent to the Zhangjiakou Detention Centre. She was then sentenced to two years of forced labour.
Abused in the Hebei Women's Forced Labour Camp
Ms. Ji was incarcerated in Division No. 1 of the Hebei Women's Forced Labour Camp.
When she refused to do the slave labour, Liu Ziwei, division chief, handcuffed her to the iron frame of a bunker bed. She had to remain standing all day. Ms. Ji protested with a hunger strike.
The labour camp did not allow Falun Gong practitioners to talk to one another or stay together. They were also not allowed to call their families, and even toilet use was restricted.
At one time, Ms. Ji and two other practitioners were only allowed three toilet visits per day. They protested with a hunger strike and regained their rights in three days.
On another occasion, guard Hou Junmei handcuffed Ms. Ji to the heating pipes in the toilet for two days and nights, simply because Ms. Ji had not reported to her prior to visiting the toilet.
Ms. Ji went on a hunger strike for two weeks to protest the abuse. She was brutally force-fed.
Beaten and Brutally Force-Fed Again
Ms. Ji refused to watch brainwashing programmes on November 24th, 2011. Hou Junmei then directed Zong Dongrong and two others to drag her to the lobby. They forced her to stand until 2 a.m. Ms. Ji went on a hunger strike again to protest the abuse.
The labour camp doctor, Hao Mingming, slapped Ms. Ji in the face with slippers before force-feeding her. Sometimes Hao also directed others to beat Ms. Ji.
When Ms. Ji screamed during force-feeding due to excruciating pain, the perpetrators taped her mouth. If Ms. Ji refused to open her mouth, they would pry it open with tweezers, or nip her nose while pulling her hair. Sometimes they would jab Ms. Ji's face with the force-feeding tube and smear the porridge all over her. They often slapped her face until she saw stars.
After Division No. 1 was disintegrated, Ms. Ji was sent to Division No. 4 of the labour camp. She continued to refuse to do slave labour.
Guard Liu Yamin kicked and beat her so severely that bruises didn't disappear until a month later.
People on duty were instructed to give Ms. Ji ugly hair styles.
Once, the guard on duty made slanderous remarks about Falun Gong and started to kick Ms. Ji. She managed to evade the guard and asked supervisors for arbitration. Instead of reprimanding the guard, Liu Yamin and Zhao Subo dragged Ms. Ji into an empty room and beat her, claiming sarcastically, “This is the heavenly law!”
Ms. Ji responded by yelling, “The chief is beating people and doing bad things!” The perpetrators then duck-taped her mouth. Ms. Ji's labour camp term was extended for 97 days.
1. "Tiger Bench": Prisoners are forced to sit on a small iron bench that is approximately 20 cm (6 inches) tall with their knees tied together. With their hands tied behind their backs or sometimes placed on their knees, they are forced to sit straight up and look straight ahead without movement for long periods of time.
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