British Falun Gong Practitioner's Account of Being Harassed by Beijing State Security Agents in China in 2010

I'm a Falun Gong practitioner from England. On July 28th, 2010, I went to Beijing to visit my parents. The minute I arrived at the Beijing airport, I was followed. Throughout the following month, state security agents talked to my father several times.

The agents arrested me three times, and they once interrogated me for seven hours. In the end, they forced me to write a guarantee statement swearing never to attend Falun Gong activities overseas. After I returned to England, I received mail from the agents asking me to stay in contact with them.

Family Threatened by State Security Agents

On July 28th, 2010, a customs officer became visibly nervous while reading out my name as he read information on the computer after keying in my passport information. He turned around and talked to another officer. The other officer made a phone call. A minute later, I was “allowed” into Beijing.

I was soon being followed by a man and a woman, who were both wearing black shirts.

The next day my father, who was on a business trip, received a call from the State Security Bureau asking him if he knew that I was back in China (my father worked in the military before he retired). He was told to quickly return home. On August 3rd, my father was interviewed by a man in his early thirties with the last name Wei and a director with the last name Wu, who was about 40 years old.

The state security officers took me to a six-story residence building named Tianzhulu near Beijing Capital International Airport at a little after 10:00 a.m. on August 4th, 2010. Two of them took turns interrogating me, and asking questions such as “What activities have you attended overseas?” “Where are the practice sites?” “Where do people study together?” “Do you know members of the Divine Land Marching Band?” “Have you gone to other countries to attend Falun Gong activities?” They also wanted to know the names of members of the Falun Gong Association overseas and the telephone numbers of overseas practitioners.

I told them I seldom attended anything, and didn’t know the answers. They mentioned the names of several practitioners overseas who were from Beijing, and asked me if I knew them. I said I didn't know anything. They asked me how I knew where and when activities would be held, whether I knew practitioners in China and had I met them since I returned, whether I had reported my current situation to practitioners overseas, and whether I was a British citizen.

After seven hours of interrogation, they asked to “see” where I lived, saying that my father had approved that. When they got to where I lived, my sister refused to let them in to search and they left.

Signing the Guarantee Statement Against My Will

My father accompanied me to Chengdu to visit my parents-in-law on August 9th, 2010. On August 15th, my father called me, asking me to return to Beijing immediately. He said that the State Security Bureau had called and said that I must be in Beijing by August 19th. They were summoning me. If I didn’t return in time, they would have State Security in Chengdu arrest me and take me back to Beijing.

I returned to Beijing on August 19th. That morning at 10:00 a.m., my father took me to see agents from the State Security Bureau. Besides the two who interrogated me last time, a man in his fifties with the last name of Li, and a woman dressed in plainclothes were also present. They took me to the room where I was interrogated last time. I had to sit on a small stool while they talked to me.

Li, a State Security Bureau chief, yelled at me before I said anything, saying that they knew everything I did overseas and that I had better come clean about what I did. He told me that if I didn’t tell them what activities I attended and they had to spell them out for me, there would be consequences. My father warned me earlier that if I didn’t cooperate, they would turn me over to the police department and put me in a forced labour camp. I was terrified.

I said nothing that morning. However, the interrogation continued into the afternoon and I gradually lost my determination. I told them which activities I went to, and, against my will, I wrote and signed a guarantee statement. In the statement, I promised “never to attend any Falun Gong activities in China or overseas” and “never discuss my conversation with the State Security agents in a defaming way” and that I would be “responsible for all consequences if I violated these rules.”

The agents took me to an office building near Guanyuan Bridge in the Xicheng District of Beijing on the afternoon on August 24th. I believe that the address was Taoyuan No. 2. As I walked down the hallway, I saw posters and slogans slandering Falun Gong.

This time, I revealed the names of several practitioners. I also told them the mobile phone number of my relative overseas, and my email address. They asked me if I was going to return to China again. I lied to them and said yes. They said that they would talk to me when I returned. I knew that they wanted to make me their spy, report to them, and give them information on Falun Gong practitioners.

I got back to England on August 28th. A few days later a friend of mine in Australia called me and said that he had received harassing text messages on his mobile phone. Later a coworker of mine, who was also a practitioner, went back to China on business. The State Security agents found him and forced him to write a guarantee statement. I realized that the agents could hack into my email without my password.

On October 8th, 2010, I received a threatening email from an agent. He said that if I kept my promise never to attend Falun Gong activities, they would keep theirs, and China would always welcome me home. He continued, saying that they wanted to stay in touch with me.

The agent called my father in January 2011 and harassed him. When my relative overseas went back to China to visit, the State Security agents talked to him and forced him to reveal my address in England


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