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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Book Launching Ceremony for the Chinese-language Version of Bloody Harvest; the killing of Falun Gong for their organs


Sydney, Australia - The evidence in their investigation report caught the attention of the United Nations Human Rights Commission, which requested that the CCP explain the big discrepancy between the numbers of death row inmates and organ transplants.

Dr. Sev Oz Ozdowski, Professor at the University of Sydney and former chairman of the Australia Human Rights Committee, participated in the book launching ceremony. He said that the CCP regime is carrying out the persecution of Falun Gong using the resources of the nation's entire political system. He said that it is the worst persecution in history. The release of the Chinese version of the book Bloody Harvest will help Chinese people learn more about the persecution of Falun Gong and the CCP’s infringement of human rights.

Mr. Matas, co-author of Bloody Harvest, was awarded the annual Human Rights Award in 2007 by the Canadian Bar Association, the distinguished service award in January 2008 by the Manitoba Bar Association, and the Order of Canada on December 30, 2008 by the Governor General of Canada.

More at Clearwisdom

Saturday, June 25, 2011

David Matas on Falun Gong and Refugee Week


China

China is too big a player on the international scene for there to be any hope of a resolution condemning its human rights violations in the Security Council, the General Assembly or the Human Rights Council. In the Security Council, China has a veto. In the General Assembly and Human Rights Council it carries too much weight, has too many friends for there to be a hope of condemnation.

China is subject to the Universal Periodic Review, the thematic mechanisms of the Human Rights Council and the UN Committee against Torture established under the Convention against Torture, since China has ratified that Convention. But China just shrugs off the criticism that these mechanisms generate. Because the options for condemning China’s human rights violations are limited, the importance of the remaining options is heightened. In that context, refugee protection as a form of human rights protest looms large.

Yet China generates a refugee population which is far too often denied protection in asylum proceedings for unsound reasons. I refer in particular to practitioners of Falun Gong.

Falun Gong is a set of exercises with a spiritual foundation, begun in 1992 with the teachings of Li Hong Zhi. First encouraged by the Communist Party of China and the Government as beneficial to health, its rapid spread, its spirituality and its non-Communist ideology eventually generated jealousy and fear amongst Party cadres that the Party would lose its ideological supremacy.

The practice in 1999 was banned. Practitioners were arrested and asked to recant. If they did not, they were tortured. If they did not recant after torture, they were disappeared. The disappeared, in the tens of thousands, have been killed for their organs sold at high prices to transplant patients

They represent, according to the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, two thirds of the torture victims in China. Thousands of documented individual named cases have died through this torture. They represent about half of those detained in the arbitrary detention re-education through labour camps, in the hundreds of thousands.

Simply practising Falun Gong, if you are in China, puts you at grave risk. Protesting the violations within China is pointless. Those who do become victims themselves. The most notable such victim is Gao Zhisheng, not a Falun Gong practitioner, but rather a human rights lawyer who protested the victimization of Falun Gong. For that, he was disbarred, his staff was fired and his office was closed down. He was beaten repeatedly, tortured severely and disappeared. His family fled China. To this day, his fate is unknown.

Given that this is so, as long as a refugee claimant establishes credibility, that he or she really is a Falun Gong practitioner, that should be enough. In more than one country, in spite of all this, sound, real, legitimate refugee protection claims of Falun Gong practitioners are rejected for the flimsiest of reasons. The typical rejection goes something like this: Falun Gong is an organization with a membership; the claimant is an ordinary member and not a high profile leader; only the high profile leadership is at risk.

This reasoning is unreal. Falun Gong is not an organization with a membership. It is a set of exercises with a spiritual foundation. It is as improper to refer to someone as a Falun Gong member as to refer to someone as a yoga member or a tai chi member.

There are, outside of China, some voluntary associations of some Falun Gong practitioners. However, there is no obligation to join any of them to practice the exercises. And these associations have no counterparts within China.

Some Falun Gong practitioners are persecuted worse than others. But the reason has nothing to do with their place in a non-existent organizational hierarchy. It has rather to do with the tenacity of their beliefs. Those who abandon the practice of Falun Gong out of fear are left alone. Those who refuse to recant are tortured, arbitrarily disappeared and killed.

Individual protests against Chinese government persecution manifest some level of organization, in the sense that some people may tell other people of the protest. Yet, because there is no formal organization, no one has particular titles or duties. Individuals take upon themselves, event by event, to do what they want.

The only way someone can obtain a high profile is through media exposure. The Government of China censors any news about the Falun Gong and blocks out any outside news. It is impossible for a Falun Gong practitioner to obtain a profile in China as a practitioner.

Moreover, in light of the banning and severe repression of Falun Gong, even those most active in protesting the brutality of the regime do everything they can to maintain a low profile. Anything else would put them at risk.

The Government of China knows who is a practitioner through monitoring e-mails and telephone conversations, spying, informing and denunciations extracted through torture. These techniques know no hierarchy. The Government of China has an extensive monitoring, spy and informant network both at home and abroad whose primary task is gathering information about the practice of Falun Gong. Practitioners in turn react by being as secretive as possible, keeping quiet their practice and protest from as many people as possible, including immediate family members.

It is impossible to say that only some practitioners and not others would come to the attention of the Government of China through its monitors, spies, informants and torture victims. Monitoring, spying, informing and torture can potentially lead to the detection of any practitioner. Even if a practitioner does the exercises in his or her home and an informant sees it through the window, the informant can report the practitioner to the police who then, if they are doing their job, will come to take the practitioner away.

A misplaced refusal of a Falun Gong practitioner refugee claim is not only a tragedy for the claimant. It is a license to China to continue to inflict violations on Falun Gong practitioners. If refugee protection countries care to protect only Falun Gong claimants who are high profile leaders of Falun Gong organizations, an empty category, then China can persecute Falun Gong practitioners with impunity.

More at J-Wire

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Journalists face long road to protection

Jakarta Post - Reporter Lukman Rozaq of Trans7, Septa Rudianto of El-Shinta radio, Eko Oscar Nugroho of New Tang Dynasty Television and Joko Hermanto of TVRI were covering a march of Falun Gong, a Chinese philosophy movement, when the police officers attacked them. ... More

Hungary Bans Falun Gong Protest of Wen Jiabao’s Visit

The denials are unconstitutional, according to the letter. The Hungarian Constitution specifies two causes for denying a request to demonstrate—jeopardizing the operations of the government or blocking traffic—and neither of those applies.

The letter asserts that “the police are under pressure to abuse the law of this country.” And links the Hungarian case to “a trend in which the Chinese Communist Party forces other nations to break their own laws and to deny citizens to exercise their freedoms in their country."

Since 1999, when Chinese delegations have come on state visits, in several instances host governments have tried to stop, hide, or limit the scope of Falun Gong protests.

The most heavily publicized case is one in which the Chinese regime attempted to bar protests by Falun Gong practitioners in connection with the visit to Iceland of China's then-paramount leader Jiang Zemin in June 2002.

More at Epoch

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Taiwan to renew satellite contract with Falun Gong after protests


Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom Co, under strong protests from the Falun Gong, on Sunday agreed to renew a contract to allow the Falun Gong's TV network to broadcast to China. 'Chunghwa Telecom has signed a memorandum of understanding with us. ...

More at Monsters and Critics.com

Related:

Deal Sought to Continue Independent Broadcasts to Mainland China

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Chinese Consulate: No Passport Renewal If You Protest


Lu Qun, a Falun Gong practitioner, peacefully protesting in front of the Chinese Consulate in Vancouver Canada.

Every Wednesday morning, a lady peacefully distributes informational pamphlets about Falun Gong to the ... More at Epoch Times

Lone Broadcaster Faces Down Pressure from Chinese Regime


He said the tough moves against Erabaru were “suspicious.” Unlicensed broadcasting is common in Indonesia, he said, and he's never heard of someone being taken to trial over it. Wicak previously attempted to cover a parade held by Falun Gong , a...More at Epoch Times

Report: Cisco faces second Chinese dissident suit

Inc. is facing a second lawsuit over claims that it helped identify and monitor Chinese dissidents, according to reports Friday. San Jose-based Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) earlier was sued in California over allegations that it marketed technology to help them monitor the Falun Gong....More at.. St Paul Business Journal

Organ donations in China: Will official financial incentives starve the black market?


China's record on organ trafficking is by now a well-known international horror story. The vast majority of organs transplanted each year in Chinese hospitals are taken from executed criminals—and allegedly from political detainees, such as members of the the Falun Gong; charges that are currently under investigation by the U.N. Human Rights Council and Amnesty International. Now, paradoxically, China is proposing forward-thinking transplant policies; commendable laws that, if properly carried out, challenge the status quo and major international health organizations.

More at Slate

Man Convicted of Spying on Falun Gong in Germany


CELLE, Germany—For the first time a Chinese agent has been convicted of spying on practitioners of Falun Gong, the meditation and spiritual discipline that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in 1999 vowed to crush. The guilty party, John Zhou, was given a two-year suspended sentence on June 8, along with a hefty fine.

Chen Yonglin was the former consul for political affairs in China’s consulate in Sydney, Australia, and was tasked with handling the Falun Gong issue. After defecting in June 2005, he testified before a committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, “The war against Falun Gong is one of the main tasks of the Chinese mission overseas.” Chen listed several examples of how the Sydney consulate attempted to interfere with and restrict Falun Gong practitioners, including strictly “monitoring” Falun Gong activities.

More at Epoch Times