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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Canadian pressure attracts growing international attention to Chinese Government's organ seizure from Falun Gong prisoners


News Release - For Immediate Release

Ottawa - Following the July release of their ‘Report into Allegations of Organ Harvesting of Falun Gong Practitioners in China’, David Kilgour, former Secretary of State (Asia-Pacific), and David Matas, international human rights lawyer, visited approximately 20 capitals in Europe, Asia, North America and Australia/New Zealand to raise awareness of the “new form of evil on this planet” among legislators, governments, media and the public, including the European Parliament in Brussels and the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.

“Our aim is to raise enough pressure on the government of China that it will stop the unacceptable practice of killing Falun Gong practitioners for their vital organs long before the Olympic Games open in 2008 -- and hopefully immediately”, said Kilgour.

The efforts of the two Canadians appear already to have produced consequences, including:

  • The European Parliament adopted a resolution condemning the persecution of Falun Gong, and expressing concern over reports of organ harvesting; the issue was also raised under the direction of the EU troika leadership through the Finnish Foreign Minister Tuomioja meeting bilaterally with China's Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing at the EU-China summit in Helsinki in September.

  • The Australian government and main opposition party reportedly asked the Chinese government to allow an independent investigation of the matter within the country.

  • The vice-president of Taiwan, Annette Lu, proposed taking measures to prevent Taiwanese nationals from going to China to receive illegally obtained organs, while condemning China’s government for the practice, after a visit from Kilgour and Matas to Taipei in October.

“As international attention on this issue grows, it is imperative that our government also take action and contribute to the stopping of such crimes”, said Matas.

Background

Kilgour and Matas were asked to investigate an allegation that organs were being harvested in China from unwilling Falun Gong practitioners in early May.

“The allegations were so shocking that they were almost impossible to believe, “ but that disbelief does not mean that the allegations are untrue”. As skeptical lawyers, they investigated. “When one of the first in camera witnesses said that her surgeon husband personally removed the corneas from approximately 2,000 anaesthetized Falun Gong prisoners, we were shaken ", wrote Kilgour.

Kilgour and Matas concluded regrettably that the allegations are true. They further concluded that the government of China and its agencies in numerous parts of the country, have put to death a large but unknown number of Falun Gong prisoners of conscience. Their vital organs, including hearts, kidneys, livers and corneas, were virtually simultaneously seized involuntarily for sale at high prices. Their report is available on line http://organharvestinvestigation.net/

The report was prepared after a systematic examination and marshalling of the evidence. It demands a reply based on facts. So far, there has not been one from the Chinese government, nor does it allow anyone to gather evidence in China.

For more information, contact: David Kilgour: (613) 747-7854; David Matas: (204) 944-1831; Organ Harvest Investigation Team: investigation.team@gmail.com

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