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Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Rally to appeal against removal of Falun Gong hut and billboards

Group has vowed to continue the protest until the persecution comes to an end

MWC: Vancouver –Friends and supporters of Falun Gong will hold a rally and press conference outside the Chinese Consulate on Granville St. on Wednesday, Feb. 4th at 1:00pm to express their disappointment with a recent BC Supreme court ruling ordering the removal of their hut and billboards located in front of the Chinese Consulate-General on S. Granville.

VIPs attending will be:

  • Legal Counsel for Falun Gong, Mr. Clive

  • Mrs. Simma Holt, Former Member of Parliament and journalist
  • Mr. Dale Jackaman, businessman in the field of corporate cyber security and forensics. He is also a veteran and a local politician.

  • Mr. Fred Muzin, supporter and past President of the Hospital Employees’ Union

Falun Gong practitioners have held a round-the-clock vigil there since 2001 to protest what amounts to a genocide against fellow practitioners in China. The site bears witness to the tens thousands who have been tortured and murdered since the persecution began in 1999. The “blue wall” along the consulate fence consists of posters calling for an end to the persecution, depictions of torture methods used in China’s labour camps and pictures of slain practitioners. The strong message demanding cessation of the ongoing killing of practitioners is not only aimed at the Chinese Consulate-General but more particularly at the international community which is in a position to help stop these atrocities by speaking out. It should be the pride of the city, and it has been so regarded by people of conscience and by human rights activists.

To allow the protest site to continue is to recognize the importance of supporting universal human rights over any political or economic interests.

Vancouver's previous mayors had no issue with this peaceful vigil until Sam Sullivan came along. While Sullivan was a councilor in the NPA-dominated council, the hut and billboards were erected in 2001. Neither he nor council called for their removal until Mayor Sullivan suddenly did so in June 2006. According to a June 2005 statement by defecting Chinese agent Hao Fengjun, a report written by a Chinese spy operating in Canada stated that due to successful lobbying by Beijing, the Canadian government had pressed the City of Vancouver to remove the protest.

If the City of Vancouver reduces the protest site issue to a mere discussion over by-law enforcement, that equates to condoning the brutal murder of tens of thousands. The law is made to protect good people and not to cover up the crimes of murderers. If we as a democratic country cannot support those who are oppressed, that is undermining the foundation of our country’s most basic principles. The protest site sends a clear message to China and the world—genocide will not be tolerated! As long as the persecution exists the protest site should exist.

Please support the appeal to allow the protest site to remain standing, not just for China and the Falun Gong, but for humanity.

We have always promised to obey the law and abide by the decision of the courts. There has been no change in this position. But part of our legal rights as Citizens of British Columbia is the right of appeal. Falun Gong will definitely abide by the ultimate decision of the Canadian judiciary. We have maintained this site through rain, wind, sleet, and snow, 24 hours per day for more than seven years. We ask the new Mayor and Council not to remove the vigil structures until the British Columbia Court of Appeal has heard the appeal against the Supreme Court decision of Mme. Justice Stromberg-Stein. We ask no more than the City’s agreement to allow a “stay of execution” until the Court of Appeal has issued its ruling.

Falun Gong is a system of exercises and meditation that originated in China rooted in Truth, Compassion and Tolerance. Since August 2001, we have sustained a continuous presence outside the consulate for over 2723 (Feb. 4th) days to protest the persecution, a feat which supporters say qualifies for the Guinness Book of World Records.

Contact: Clive Ansley 250-792-3547, Legal Counsel for Falun Gong
Sue Zhang 778-384-8612, spokesperson for Falun Dafa Association

Authored by Falun Dafa Association of Vancouver

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