On April 28, 2005, Falun Gong practitioners in Indonesia lodged a complaint with the country's independent human rights organisation over an incident in which practitioners were removed by the police and unreasonably convicted for appealing outside the Chinese Embassy.
|Local troublemakers stir up the crowd|
On April 23 and April 25, 2005, Indonesian Falun Gong practitioners conducted two peaceful appeals. The first was in front of the building where the Asia-Africa Summit was being held, the second was in front of the Chinese Embassy in Indonesia where practitioners held banners reading "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance" and "Bring Jiang Zemin to Justice," re-enacted torture methods to expose the CCP's persecution of Falun Gong practitioners, and conducted group practise. Both activities were soon forcibly dispersed by the police, and twelve practitioners were detained for 24 hours to record their affidavits. At Jakarta's South District Subordinate Court, the twelve practitioners were originally charged with "Disturbing the Social Order" according to the basic law No. 510, but later the judge changed the charge according to the police to violating the 11th local law from 1988, "Occupying the space in an area to grow trees" and convicted them. On the morning of April 28, when all defendants were absent, the judge gave the twelve Falun Gong practitioners a two month suspended sentence and six months of probation. That is to say, in the following six months, they cannot go to the same place to appeal. If they violate the ruling, they will be imprisoned for two months.
|On April 25, 2005, police officers forcibly remove Falun Gong practitioners who are peacefully appealing|
The police's abnormal behaviour greatly surprised Falun Gong practitioners and also Mr. Kato, a lawyer from a legal assistance organisation. Mr. Kato said that everyone, including himself, is very familiar with Falun Gong practitioners who have been peacefully appealing and protesting. At the hearing in the lower court, Mr. Kato proposed to the judge that Falun Gong practitioners peacefully appeal to put an end to the brutal persecution in China. Acts of exposing the persecution like this are good deeds. The constitution of Indonesia ensures that every citizen has the right of freedom of speech.
|Under the pressure from the Chinese Embassy, the police forcibly remove the banner and stop the legal appeal activity|
When asked if they were rudely treated or threatened, several Falun Gong practitioners expressed that several days prior to the activity, they all received threatening phone calls or messages from someone claiming to be a member of a certain organisation. The message was that Falun Gong practitioners were forbidden to hold an appeal activity during Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to Indonesia. Both phone calls and messages were highly intimidating. Defence counsel Mr. Kato believed that the police action was closely related to the Chinese president's visit to Indonesia. According to the media's report, the CCP promised the Indonesian government several hundred million US dollars worth of assistance.
|The police forcibly carry practitioners to a police car|
In addition, regarding the two-month imprisonment verdict, Mr. Kato felt it did not conform to the original charge, and there were many legal loopholes. A representative of the country's independent human rights organisation said Falun Gong practitioners could continue to appeal this unjust verdict. It was reported that the Falun Gong practitioners will file an appeal to the high court.
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