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Thursday, August 26, 2010

2010 UN Report Highlights Falun Gong Persecution in China

Gwinnett Gazette: Nowak wrote in his report, "China maintains the most institutionalized method of opposing political dissents that I have encountered. Political dissidents and human rights defenders, ethnic groups that are often suspected of separation (particularly Tibetans and Uyghurs), as well as spiritual groups such as Falun Gong are often accused of political crimes such as endangering national security through undermining the unity of the country, subversion or unlawfully supplying State secrets to individuals outside the country. Such individuals are not only at a high risk of torture when arrested, but the Reeducation Through Labor (RTL) Regime that is often used as a sentence for political crimes employs measures of coercion, humiliation and punishment aimed at altering the personality of detainees up to the point of breaking their will."

Recounting experiences from his fact-finding mission to China, Nowak stated, "In China, many detainees were simply too scared to engage in any conversation with me, even if it was of a rather general nature and did not refer to any compromising issues. The mere fact that they could possibly be perceived to have complained to the UN Special Rapporteur was a risk which many legitimately did not want to take on them. Other, more daring detainees agreed to talk to me only after I assured them confidentiality and not to include their accounts in the appendix on individual cases in my report. The possibility of reprisals against those who I interviewed strongly influenced the conduct of my fact-finding." Read more...

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