Agence France Presse (AFP): Falun Gong [Practitioner] to go to UN with Claims she was Tortured by China (photo)

An Australian [practitioner] of the Falun Gong spiritual movement who claims she was tortured in China is to mount a case in the UN Commission on Human Rights against former Chinese president Jiang Zemin, her lawyers said.

Chinese artist Zhang Cui Ying, 41, says she was tortured and abused after being arrested and jailed because of her beliefs by Chinese authorities.

Brisbane solicitor Chris Nyst has briefed London-based Australian human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson to mount the case against the former Chinese president over his alleged role in human rights violations.

As well as going to the UN, they also plan a parallel action in the International Court of Justice, citing a breach of international conventions of which China is a signatory.

Nyst said it would be one of the first such cases to go before the UN.

He said Robertson's involvement should strengthen Zhang's case and would ensure it is likely to become a benchmark fight against the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners.

"The Zhang case is a very poignant example of what has happened to many people in China," Nyst said in a statement.

Followers of Falun Gong, or Falun Dafa as it is also known, preach "truth, compassion and forbearance" and practise meditation and tai chi-like exercises, but the movement has been banned since 1999 by China [...].

Falun Gong has responded with ongoing claims of persecution, torture and murder of its practitioners by Chinese authorities.

Civil actions against Jiang for his alleged persecution of Falun Gong members are also under way in the United States, Canada, France, Belgium and Switzerland.

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