Hearing Monday to decide fate of Falun Gong protest site
Hearing scheduled for seven days in BC Supreme Court
Vancouver-Resolution of the long-standing dispute between the City of Vancouver and Falun Gong practitioners concerning the Falun Gong protest display before the Chinese Consulate-General may be imminent.
Structures publicizing the persecution of Falun Gong in China by the Chinese government were first erected in 2001 and have remained there to the present day.
The Falun Gong practitioners argue that the City’s attempt to remove their structures and banners constitutes a violation of their freedom of speech under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The City argues that the structures encroach on City property and this constitutes a violation of a City by-law regulating streets and sidewalks.
After several court hearings over the past two years involving procedural issues, the court will finally hear argument on the merits of the case beginning on Monday. The hearing is set down for seven days in British Columbia Supreme Court.
Counsel for Falun Gong have cross-examined several City officials and on Wednesday they cross examined Mayor Sam Sullivan. Transcripts of these cross-examinations will be addressed in the upcoming hearing.
Falun Dafa Association of Vancouver