On April 15th, 2008, the Belgian Flemish Parliament organised a hearing regarding China's human rights & the Olympic Games in the Brussels Parliament Building. Falun Gong practitioners were invited to attend.
The hearing was organised by the Flemish parliament’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Flemish Greens and other Flemish Interested Parties were putting forward two motions requesting the Flemish parliament, the Belgium Olympic Committee and athletes to take action and express their concerns about China's human rights. The hearing was chaired by the Chairman of the Flemish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Flemish culture and sports minister, Falun Gong practitioners, representatives of the Friends of Tibet, Belgium IOC members were invited to speak and answer questions at the scene. The report of the hearing will serve the main reference for Parliament Members to vote on the two motions.
|Flemish Culture and Sports Minister Bert Anciaux||Falun Gong practitioner Nicholas|
Flemish Culture and Sports Minister made a speech first. He said none of the Flemish government officials would attend the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympic Games. "Of course, the Olympic Games is a very important occasion, it is an opportunity for us to try to improve China's current status and urge the Chinese government to pay more attention to the Chinese people’s civil rights and the situation in Tibet." He said he had been making a commitment to human rights and cultural rights and interests of workers, at this moment, to participate in the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympic Games was contrary to his personal code of ethics.
Falun Gong practitioner Nicholas described the persecution that Falun Gong has suffered in China, in particular before the Olympic Games. He called on all countries to make efforts: "Whether large or small countries, when they are faced with the reality of the persecution; the CCP has been arresting a large number of Falun Gong practitioners; and the removal of organs from living bodies; and especially when facing the fact that as the Olympic Games was approaching, in the past few months the numbers of Falun Gong practitioners who were arrested by the CCP was growing sharply; no matter how much power you own, you should do something about it to place your own position. For instance, between the Flemish and China, there are many economic exchanges; we tell them Falun Gong practitioners were widely used as slave labour. Many European companies have contracts with Chinese companies, but they do not know that these Chinese companies will out source production to the labour camps, prisons etc.”
Nicholas said, "If we really want to help the Chinese people, if we really want them to enjoy full freedom and the fraternity of the Olympic Games, we should help them to speak out on the issue of human rights in China. Of Course, we should have the right to express freely, should not be afraid to discuss the issue of human rights during the Olympic Games. "
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