What’s Behind China’s Denial of Forced Organ Harvesting?

August 27, 2016

(Minghui.org) The Chinese state-sanctioned forced organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience, including Falun Gong practitioners, became a focus of media attention during the 26th International Congress of The Transplantation Society in Hong Kong from August 19 to 23, something the Chinese government did not expect.

The New York Times published three reports on the issue. On August 19 the president of the Transplantation Society, Dr. Philip J. O’Connell, is quoted as saying, “The Chinese claim that the world accepts its organ transplant system is rebutted.”

Dr. O’Connell said to the Chinese speakers at the convention,“It is important that you understand that the global community is appalled by the practices that the Chinese have adhered to in the past,” according to The New York Times article.

On August 18, the evening before the convention began, two Chinese state-run associations held a special session on organ transplantation in China. The speakers at the special session included the former Chinese health minister, Huang Jiefu, and the director of the hospital affiliated with Zhejiang University, Zheng Shusen, two top figures in the Chinese organ transplant community.

Surprisingly, or maybe not, the only reporters allowed in the special Chinese session were from the Chinese state-run newspapers and TV stations and a few Hong Kong pro-communist media.

The next day, more than 20 Chinese media told the world the same story: This special Chinese organ transplant meeting showed that the Chinese organ transplant world had been truly accepted by The Transplantation Society, and former health minister Huang Jiefu vehemently denied the accusation leveled by the international community against Chinese forced organ harvesting.

In The New York Times article on August 19 Dr. O’Connell said, “So they may say that, but that’s not what the truth is.”

A New York Times article on August 17 covered the heated argument over Chinese forced organ harvesting before the convention. Several human right organizations and physicians wanted to boycott the convention, because some speakers were suspected of being involved in the forced organ harvesting, including Huang Jiefu and Zheng Shushen.

A group of physicians and ethicists published an article in the American Journal of Transplantation, criticizing “the decision to hold the conference in China as premature” according to The New York Times article “Debate Flares on China’s Use of Prisoners’ Organs as Experts Meet in Hong Kong” on the 17th.

More than 10 papers submitted to the convention were rejected because of the unclear sources of organs. The director of the hospital affiliated with Zhejiang University, Zheng Shusen, was invited to speak, but his speech was cancelled, and his paper is under investigation. Zheng missed the opening ceremony and returned home before the meeting started.

At the press conference on August 19, Dr. Jeremy Chapman, the former president of the Transplantation Society, said that Zheng’s paper may have violated the society’s rule that no organs from executed prisoners be used in research, although Zheng’s name was not mentioned.

If it turns out that the authors did violate the rule, Dr. Chapman said, “Then they will be named and shamed, and they will be excluded from our meetings forever — and from publication in transplantation journals.”

Falun Gong practitioners hold a protest outside the conference venue.

In June 2016, three independent investigators from Canada and the U.S.—David Kilgour, David Matas, and Ethan Gutmann—published a 680-page joint report on the state-sanctioned organ harvesting in China. The report estimated that 60,000 to 100,000 organ transplant surgeries have been conducted in China every year, the majority of which used organs from Falun Gong practitioners.

Zheng Shusen’s own experiences offer indirect evidence to support this accusation.

Zheng Shusen, 66, is one of the most experienced liver transplant surgeons in China. According to the state-run publication Guangmingwang and the China Association for Science and Technology, Zheng has carried out 1,850 liver transplants as of March 2016.

According to an article on the website of his institute, the Center for Liver Transplants, on January 28, 2005, Zheng once performed 5 liver transplants in one day and 11 total in that week alone.

Zheng told the media in 2006 that, from 1992 to 1998, there were only 78 liver transplants in the whole country, but this number has increased dramatically since 1999, which coincides with the beginning of the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999.

What stands out in Zheng’s experience is “liver transplants for acute hepatic failure” (LTAHF), which refers to patients who must get a liver transplant within 72 hours or die. Based on the data from Zheng’s research papers published in 2005, his institute carried out 46 LTAHF procedures from January 2000 to December 2004.

Since this kind of transplant cannot be pre-arranged, it is extremely rare in Western countries. However, among 4331 cases listed in the official Chinese Report on Liver Transplant Registration in 2016, 1150 were LTAHF procedures, 40% of the total!

The large number of LTAHF cases is considered strong evidence of the existence of organ harvesting from living people in China.

It is noteworthy that Zheng is the chair of the Provincial Anti-Cult Association in Zhejiang Province. One of the major functions of this state-run association in the last two decades has been to aid and abet the persecution of Falun Gong.

Zheng himself has been actively involved in slandering and vilifying Falun Gong. He was the chief editor of a book published in 2009 that defames Falun Gong.

Although Zheng never revealed the source of his organs in his papers, his role in the anti-Falun Gong campaign certainly suggests a convenient source of organs to supply the immense organ transplant industry in China.

Chinese version available

Category: Organ Harvesting

Hearing on Organ Harvesting Held by U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs

June 26, 2016 | By Minghui correspondent Wang Ying

(Minghui.org) A joint subcommittee hearing titled “Organ harvesting: An examination of a brutal practice” was held by the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs on June 23, 2016. Several witnesses gave testimony that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) conducts live organ harvesting from Falun Gong practitioners at the scale of genocide, and that the heinous crime is exceedingly cruel.

Hearing venue

Mr. David Matas: Large Number of Falun Gong Practitioners Are Killed for Organs

Canadian human rights attorney David Matas (left)

David Matas, one of three co-authors of a recent report on organ harvesting, said in his testimony, “David Kilgour and I have been researching, writing, and speaking on the killing of Falun Gong for their organs now for ten years. Ethan Gutmann is a journalist who interviewed us on our work, and then did his own.”

“Since David Kilgour and I published Bloody Harvest, the third version of our report in book form, and Ethan Gutmann published his book The Slaughter, we three have remained active in writing, researching, investigating, and speaking on organ transplant abuse in China. Yesterday, at the National Press Club, we released an 817 page update to our work. It is now available online.”

He stated, “The ultimate conclusion of the update is that the Chinese Communist Party has engaged the State in the mass killings of innocents, primarily practitioners of the spiritually-based set of exercises Falun Gong, but also Uyghurs, Tibetans, and select House Christians, in order to obtain organs for transplants.”

“The fact that the evidence we have now examined shows much larger volumes of transplants than the Government of China has asserted, points to a larger discrepancy between transplant volumes and Government of China-identified sources than we had previously thought existed. That increased discrepancy leads us to conclude that there has been a far larger slaughter of practitioners of Falun Gong for their organs than we had originally estimated.”

Ethan Gutmann: “This Is the Familiar Specter of Human Genocide—Cloaked in Modern Scrubs.”

Journalist Ethan Gutmann

Investigative journalist Ethan Gutmann testified at the hearing, “…in 1999, State Security launched the campaign to eliminate Falun Gong. By 2001, over one million Falun Gong incarcerated within the Laogai System were subject to retail-organ testing, and Chinese military and civilian hospitals were ramping up their transplant facilities.”

“In early 2006, the Kilgour-Matas report was published. Beijing conceded that they used prisoner organs, ostensibly banned foreign organ tourism to China, and provided prisoners with permission-to-donate forms. In 2012, this thin tissue was shredded by the revelation that Bo Xilai’s protege, Wang Lijun, ran a live organ harvesting center which had performed thousands of transplants.”

He stated, “…this is the familiar specter of human genocide—cloaked in modern scrubs.”

He indicated that their newest investigation report shows that the Chinese regime’s forced live organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience is continuing at an alarming scale.

Charles Lee: China Has A Large Organ “Donor” Bank of Living Persons

Charles Lee, M.D., director of Public Awareness, World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong (WOIPFG)

Charles Lee, M.D., director of Public Awareness, World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong (WOIPFG), testified at the hearing, “So far, WOIPFG has collected more than 3,000 academic papers on organ transplants in China, and has analyzed over 300 of them, with descriptions of donors from over 200 hospitals in 31 provinces and municipalities in China. Nearly all of them were written after 1999, especially between the years of 2000 and 2008.”

“By analyzing the descriptions of the gender, age, health condition, and cause of death of the ‘donors’, the procedure of organ removal, the data on the warm and cold ischemia time (that is, respectively, the time from the cessation of circulation until the perfusion of the organ with cold preservative chemicals; and the time from when the organ is perfused until it is transplanted into the recipient) and the rapidity of organ matching, we are able to point to the clear existence of a large organ ‘donor’ bank consisting of living persons.”

“This new set of evidence also strengthens the previous conclusion that the Chinese regime is harvesting organs from living people, and that very large numbers of captive and healthy Falun Gong practitioners have been kept as living ‘donors’.”

To show the abundance of organs available in China, he gave an example in which multiple organs were sourced for a single transplant surgery: “One typical case was Huang Jiefu’s liver transplant operation in Xinjiang in September, 2005. Huang was then the vice minister of the Ministry of Health. The first donor’s liver was discarded due to the discovery that the patient was suitable for autologous liver transplant. Then he called for another three ‘standby livers’ from three different places: Chongqing, Guangzhou, and Xinjiang (in case the autologous liver transplant failed).”

“Matching livers were quickly found in both cities, and the matching livers arrived in Xinjiang almost at the same time, at 6:30 p.m. on September 29. Huang’s operation lasted from 7 p.m. on September 29 to 10 a.m. on September 30. After 24 hours of observation, Huang announced that the operation was successful; therefore, the sparelivers were no longer needed.”

Charles pointed out, “The acceptable cold ischemic time (that is, the time from when an organ is cooled and perfused with chemicals as it is removed from the donor, until it is transplanted) for a liver is 6-10 hours. In China it is sometimes longer, but should still be within 15 hours. Therefore, one can safely say that the ‘two spare livers’ brought from Chongqing and Guangzhou could only be two intact living persons, otherwise, the extraction time, flight time, Huang’s operation time, and observation time would be at least 50 hours, the livers would have no value. Yet they were called spare livers.”

Congressman Dana Rohrabacher: The Chinese Communist Party is One of the Largest Forces for Evil in the World Today

U.S. House Representative Dana Rohrabacher

U.S. House Representative Dana Rohrabacher said during the hearing, “The Chinese Communist Party is one of the largest forces for evil in the world today. The systemic government-sponsored harvesting of organs is a monstrous crime. The Chinese regime not only deprives its people of their basic rights on a daily basis, but literally steal their body parts for profit.”

“Falun Gong practitioners, a peaceful and respected Chinese movement, continues to suffer greatly at the hands of the CCP,” said Rep. Rohrabacher. “They are victims of forced organ harvesting.” Under the efforts of human rights advocates, journalists, and investigators, the CCP’s atrocities are becoming known to the world.

Representative Smith: The CCP’s Atrocity is Barbaric

U.S. House Representative Chris Smith

U. S. House Representative Chris Smith said, “The Falun Gong repression is especially brutal, ugly, and vicious. I strongly believe that the 17-year-long campaign to eradicate Falun Gong will be seen as the biggest shame in recent Chinese history.” He commented that the organ harvesting by the Chinese regime and doctors is reminiscent of what happened in Nazi concentration camps during World War II.

He indicated that it was a little discouraging that more people aren’t coming forward to investigate the perpetrators in the persecution of Falun Gong and organ harvesting, but that this will change.

Chinese version available

Category: Organ Harvesting