Press Release: UK Falun Gong Practitioners Urge Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister to End Escalating Torture and Killings

UK Falun Gong Information Centre Press Release

15th January 2002


UK Falun Gong Practitioners Urge Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister to End Escalating Torture and Killings


On Wednesday 16th January 2002, the Chinese Foreign Minister will begin his visit to the UK.

UK Falun Gong practitioners will peacefully appeal to the Minister to end his government’s illegal and inhuman persecution of Falun Gong in China. This issue is of urgent concern as in the recent 20-day period, 22 Falun Gong practitioners have been killed or tortured to death.


Programme

UK practitioners will be holding activities at the following venues:

- Wednesday, 16 January, opposite Chinese embassy, Portland Place, London 4.30- 6.30pm [Foreign Minister (FM) visits Chinese embassy staff]. GLA member, Brian Coleman, will also be present to make a speech.

- Thursday, 17 January, 11.30 – 1pm, Downing Street/ Carlton Gardens, London, 6.30-9pm Whitehall Place [FM has dinner]

UK victims of the Chinese government’s persecution of Falun Gong will be available for interviews.


Concern at Embassy Tactics during the Foreign Minister’s Visit

Miss Xia Ze, a British citizen of Chinese origin and Falun Gong practitioner, has said that, “We have been told by the police that the embassy may play loud Chinese music or drums and percussion instruments to counteract our peaceful appeal as they have done this in the past. We sincerely hope they do not use underhand tactics to drown out the voice of free speech and conscience.”


China Openly and Blatantly Disregards International Criticism of Its Human Rights Abuses

China continues to pay superficial attention to the concerned conscience of world opinion regarding its human rights abuses. The International Education Development (IED) Statement at the United Nations classified the Chinese government's persecution of Falun Gong as "State Terrorism." It said, "The [Chinese] government...attempted to justify its state terrorism against the [Falun Gong] group by calling it an evil cult that has caused deaths and the break-up of families. In our investigation, the only deaths have been at the hands of the Chinese authorities; families have been broken up because family members have been killed by the regime; people have been broken down, not by Falun Gong, but by extreme torture, incarceration in mental hospitals with brutal treatment, hard labour in labour camps and other such practices. As was reported in the International Herald Tribune on August 6, 2001, the regime admits that it has officially sanctioned violence against practitioners in order to wipe out Falun Gong. The regime points to a supposed self-immolation incident in Tiananmen Square on January 23, 2001 as proof that Falun Gong is an evil cult. However, we have obtained a video of that incident that in our view proves that this event was staged by the government." - IED at the United Nations


Chinese Government Responds to Criticism by Escalating Torture, Killing and Propaganda

The recent killings of Falun Gong practitioners clearly shows that the Chinese authorities response to international concern of its human rights record is to escalate the rate of deaths from torture and to produce further lies to cover up the crimes. Peter Jauhal, Chairman of the Falun Gong Association [UK], has said that, “There can be no justification for the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China. To use lies and propaganda to excuse such killings is quite frankly shameless and hurtful. We hope that people will not be fooled by the Chinese regime's propaganda. We ask that people take a close look at this issue for themselves...investigate the nature of Falun Gong, those who practise it, and the effects it has had on millions of people's lives throughout the world. I think then it will be clear that the real reason the Chinese regime targets Falun Gong so viciously is because the truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance of its teachings ennoble the human spirit, and gives people the ability to strictly adhere to non-violence, regardless of how they are treated. The Communist regime fears this...that is the real reason for the persecution."

Facts and Figures

A verified total of 343 practitioners have died since the persecution of Falun Gong in China began in 1999 - over 20 of those were reported in the last 22 days. Government officials inside China, however, report that the actual death toll is well over 1,600. To date, over 100,000 Falun Gong practitioners have been detained, with more than 20,000 being sentenced to forced labour camps without trial.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, please contact: Peter Jauhal on 07712 197567, Mr Lingsoong Wong 07764 421 456 or Miss Xia Ze on 07960 958943. Websites: www.clearharmony.net, www.faluninfo.net


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