Particulars on the deaths of the six individuals below were verified early this month. The Chinese government takes great pains to suppress news of the deaths, but information does trickle out. Individuals gather information, such as that below, and get it out of the country at great personal risk. Because of the official information blockade, those specific cases that have been reported thus far are only the tip of the iceberg--the total loss of life is undoubtedly much greater.
The six latest deaths to be verified:
Ms. He Xueyan, from Dujiangyan, Sichuan Province, was beaten to death while in police custody in April 2001. In January, she went to Beijing to publicly appeal. When she didn't return home, the police in Dujiangyan arrested her husband in her place, although he had done nothing--and is not even a Falun Gong practitioner. Eventually, Ms. He turned herself in to the police and requested the release of her husband. She hasn't been seen since. Her death was revealed in May, after a police subterfuge of visiting the family several times to inquire about her, knowing that she was dead already. The whereabouts of her body are still unknown.
Worth noting in relation to this death in Sichuan is the previous report that Mr. Zhou Yongkang, the General Secretary of the Provincial Committee of the Chinese [party name omitted] Party of Sichuan Province, has been served legal papers in the U.S. in Chicago formally charging him with committing serious human rights abuses under the Torture Victims Protection Act and the Alien Tort Claims Act (see http://www.faluninfo.net/DisplayAnArticle.asp?ID=4882)
Ms. Li Mei, 33, from Shizhu Village, Laiyang City, Shandong Province died on May 28 from a broken spine and other injuries from torture while detained in the "transformation school" of Laiyang. Director Zhao in Longwangzhuang Town government, Laiyang City, Shangdong Province ordered the transformation of Ms. Li. In response to her practising Falun Gong exercises in the school, she was severely tortured to the point of the broken spine, lower limb paralysis and insanity. The town government refused to pay her hospital bills. In attempts to cover up, the town government gave her relatives 30,000 yuan and forced them to sign a statement that said, "Li Mei died of suicide. Her death has nothing to do with others." Her husband refused to accept that and sought assistance from lawyers, but because Li Mei was a Falun Gong practitioner, nobody dared to help. Her relatives were asked to pay the hospital 60,000 yuan in order to have her body returned. For a peasant to come up with so much money is impossible, so Li Mei's body remains in the hospital. During a verification telephone interview, a township government official claimed, "She may have committed suicide in a hospital in May." When asked how she committed suicide, he said, "We are not quite clear."
The death of Mr. Zhao Bin, 34, from Jixi City, Heilongjiang Province occurred in Jixi City Detention Centre and was announced August 20, 2001. Mr. Zhao worked in the management team of the material department in Eastern Sea Ore in Jixi. He was previously illegally sentenced to one year in a labour camp in 1999 for his appeal journey to Beijing. On July 24, 2001 he was arrested by police when he was distributing truth-clarifying literature with another practitioner, Gaoyi. He was detained illegally in the detention centre but refused to cooperate with such demands as that he renounce his practice of Falun Gong. His family members are presently negotiating with the authorities. More investigation is needed for further details. Jixi First Detention Centre: 0467-2325414 Police office in Eastern Sea Ore: 0467-2769566
The family of Mr.Wang Xiaozong, about 30, from Mudanjiang City, Heilongjiang Province learned of his death approximately August 30. He was illegally detained on August 17, 2001. Before his death, Mr. Wang's wife visited him at the detention centre. He told her that the police beat him with electric batons and that the food was very bad. Possibly due to leaking such "secrets," he died the next day. But the news of his death was kept from his family until the third day after his death. When the police delivered the news to the family that he died of cerebral hemorrhage, they said that the detention centre took no responsibility for his death. All of his colleagues were greatly upset by the news, as Mr. Wang was a diligent and conscientious co-worker, who never complained about anything and was highly respected by all. Those who knew him say that he was in excellent health, and could not believe that he died from "natural causes" at the detention centre. Mr. Wang leaves behind an elderly father who cannot take care of himself, a wife, who is unemployed, and two young children, all with no means of support. A son, husband and father was taken from the family by police. The East-suburb Police Station (0453-6306110) confirmed the death of Mr. Wang to a reporter, but didn't give any explanation as to what caused the bleeding inside Wang's skull.
Ms. Zhang Weixin, 44, from Daqing, Heilongjiang Province was reported to have jumped from a moving train in Goubangzi while being transported back to Daqing from Beijing on August 31. Several other Falun Gong practitioners have been reported to have "jumped" to their death from tall buildings or moving trains. Ms. Zhan was an employee of Daqing Installation Company's section No. 3. She went to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong on August 26, 2001. On August 29, Beijing called to request that Daqing officials take Ms. Zhang back home. After the death, the Daqing public safety department sent more than 20 people (including a legal medical expert) to Beijing to bring Ms. Zhang back. At last report, the body had not been returned to Daqing. Previously, five other Falun Gong practitioners from the Daqing area have died during the persecution campaign: Li Baoshui, Cui Xiaojuan, Zhang Tieyan, Wang Bin, Chen Lanqiu. The security department (459-571-0415) at Ms. Zhang's workplace confirmed her death to a reporter.
Ms. Wang Hong, 39, from Changtan town East Street, Liaozhong County, Liaoning Province, died on August 31. She went to appeal in Beijing on December 1, 2000 and was detained at the Longshan Labour Camp in Shenyang City. She was transferred among several labour camps and was finally sent back to Longshan. In these labour camps, she was subjected to numerous methods of torture but still refused to renounce her belief in Falun Gong. The physical punishment she sustained resulted in acute renal failure. While she was dying, the police at the detention centre delayed her release and threatened her family that they would have to pick up her dead body. She returned home on August 22 and died on the 31st. At the time of death, her body was still covered with bruises.
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