Before Party Congress, Crackdown on Falun Gong in Full Force
Congress as ‘Excuse’
The campaign against Falun Gong has gone on since 1999, but anti-Falun Gong activities, and the severity with which they are carried out, appear to have been stepped up this year.
A review of Chinese regime websites at different departmental and administrative levels across the country shows a concerted campaign, extending to neighborhoods and apartment blocks, to identify and attack Falun Gong practitioners ahead of the 18th Party Congress, and in the name of the congress.
But according to Levi Browde, executive director of the Falun Dafa Information Center, the Party’s security forces are using the idea of “safeguarding” the event as an excuse to persecute Falun Gong, and attempt to revive the campaign.
“It’s very difficult to keep up a campaign for 12 or 13 years with any kind of momentum,” he said. “That’s why they break it into little campaigns, as a way to package it, give it new objectives, and push it forward. The congress is no different.”
Like the Olympics and other major events in China, the event has simply become a way to “advance the long-term objective against Falun Gong, which is to stamp it out,” he said. “Look at the long prison sentences. If they were concerned about the safety of the congress, they would round everybody up and let them go afterwards. They would not hand down 14 year prison sentences.”