Attendees of European Parliament Session Support Falun Gong

July 10, 2016 | By Wu Sijing, a Minghui correspondent in France

(Minghui.org) Falun Gong practitioners in Europe exposed the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) brutal persecution during the European Parliament’s (EP) last plenary session before summer break in Strasbourg, France, on July 4-8, 2016. Practitioners held group exercises on the grass near the parliament building. Attendees of the plenary session talked to practitioners to obtain detailed information, including about the CCP’s crimes of harvesting organs from living practitioners. Many signed a statement calling for the European Parliament to investigate the CCP’s organ harvesting.

2016-7-7-eu-news-1

2016-7-7-eu-news-2
European Falun Gong practitioners collect signatures from attendees of the EP plenary session on a statement calling for the EP to investigate the CCP’s organ harvesting crimes.

2016-7-7-eu-news-3
Mr. Michael Oberli, an employee of the EP, signs the statement and plans to spread the news to his colleagues.

2016-7-7-eu-news-4
People sign statement against organ harvesting.

Member of EP: Let More People See Falun Gong

2016-7-7-eu-news-5
Ms. Renata Briano, Italian member of the EP, supports Falun Gong practitioners.

Falun Gong became a topic of discussion among the attendees of the EP session. Some members of EP not only signed the statement, but also came to express their support of Falun Gong practitioners in person.

Ms. Renata Briano, a member of the EP from Italy, took a photo of herself in front of the Falun Gong practitioners’ group exercises. She said she would post the picture on her Facebook account to let more people see Falun Gong.

Ms. Briano signed the statement and submitted it to the EP. She said, “I think [organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners] is terrible! I hope to help Falun Gong practitioners.” She mentioned that the EP had passed a resolution in 2013, which clearly stated the EP’s position against the CCP’s organ harvesting. She hoped this would reinforce the EP’s stance against organ harvesting.

Chinese Attendee of EP Session Shocked by the Atrocities

A Chinese lady who attended the EP session happened to pass by the Falun Gong booth. She was surprised to see the group exercise, and took pictures. A practitioner went to talk to her. It turned out she was from China, but didn’t know much about the persecution. The practitioner told her about the persecution that her family had experienced in China. The practitioner’s mother had been arrested several times for practicing Falun Gong, and their home was searched. The lady was shocked by the brutality of the persecution, especially the organ harvesting from living practitioners. The practitioner showed her the investigation report by two Canadian lawyers, which was backed by substantial evidence. The lady left in deep thought.

How Can We Not Sign?”

2016-7-7-eu-news-6
Philip and Anna from Switzerland said, “How can we not sign on seeing it (organ harvesting)?

2016-7-7-eu-news-7
Ingrid (left) and Stephanie

Ingrid and Stephanie, a mother and daughter from Belgium, were on their way to visit the EP when they ran into the Falun Gong practitioners. Since Stephanie is a law student, she had come to learn about human rights from the EP, but happened to also learn first-hand information from Falun Gong practitioners.

Stephanie and her mother both signed the statement supporting Falun Gong’s work opposing the persecution. Stephanie said, “Such [atrocities] must stop!” Ingrid added, “We are living in modern society. We can’t allow such things to happen. I hope the world will be become a better place.”

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events

Paris, France: “Falun Gong Is Not Just China’s Treasure, It’s the World’s Treasure”

June 29, 2016 | By Zhou Wenying, a Minghui correspondent in Paris, France

(Minghui.org) 26-year-old Christian Carpineta from Italy stood in front of some posters near the Eiffel Tower reading about the brutal persecution of Falun Gong in China. He began asking questions to some practitioners who were there raising awareness about this spiritual practice that’s been persecuted since 1999.

Learning that Falun Gong is rooted in traditional Chinese culture with core principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, Carpineta commented, “It’s not just China’s treasure, it’s the world’s treasure, the treasure of mankind.”

2016-6-27-paris-01

2016-6-27-paris-02

2016-6-27-paris-03
Many visitors read the posters and learned about the persecution of Falun Gong in China.

One of many who stopped at the Falun Gong display on June 26, Carpineta currently resides in Nantes in Western France, and works at a nursing home. He told a practitioner that this was the first time he heard about the persecution.

“I pay special attention to persecutions, especially those against people of faith. China has a special place in history. However, because of the Cultural Revolution, its spiritual beliefs are persecuted and historical relics destroyed. The country has come to a dangerous stage.”

Encouraging the practitioners to continue their efforts, he said, “We need to make people aware of what is happening in China and cherish this practice.”

2016-6-27-paris-04
Many visitors read the posters and talked to practitioners

Carlos Meldenes signed the petition demanding that the persecution stop after he learned about China’s state-sanctioned organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners incarcerated for their faith.

“This is a crime of genocide, a bloody slaughtering. If it was done by a regime, then the regime is guilty,” Meldenes said in an outraged tone. “You must let everyone know that the Chinese communist regime is committing a crime against humanity.”

Cecile from Paris is an 80-year-old Christian woman who understands religious persecution. After she signed a petition, she said, “I want to help fight for your rights. You are doing great work. Keep it up!”

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events

Broad Support for Falun Gong in Strasbourg

June 14, 2016

(Minghui.org) “My Parliament Member co-sponsored the resolution, because we are worried about the human rights situation in China. We know [about] the persecution of Falun Gong, so we want to join your peaceful resistance. We support you,” said Lukas Bachta, an assistant to a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) to Falun Gong practitioners in front of the European Union (EU) building in Strasbourg, France.

2016-6-11-europe-01
Lukas Bachta, from the Czech Republic, said that he and his MEP want to help stop the illicit organ trade in China. He took part in the practitioners’ group exercises for 30 minutes.

Falun Gong practitioners held activities in Strasbourg the week of June 6 while the European Parliament (EP) was in session. They gathered to show their support for the statement (48/2016) cosigned by 12 MEPs asking the European Parliament to investigate the state-sanctioned organ harvesting of prisoners of conscience in China, the majority of whom are Falun Gong practitioners. If half of the MEPs sign the statement, the request will automatically become a resolution.

2016-6-11-europe-02
Falun Gong practitioners peacefully demonstrate the exercises outside the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France

2016-6-11-europe-03
Talking to the public about the atrocities taking place in China

2016-6-11-europe-04
People from all over Europe sign the petition to condemn the forced organ harvesting in China

Many MEPs met with practitioners over the week. So far, more than 100 have co-signed the statement. Some staff members from MEP offices attended the practitioners’ event, signed the petition, and asked for more information about the forced organ harvesting.

Bertrand, an EU staffer, remarked, “Falun Gong is peaceful. I am interested in it. I see your compassion, which is permanent. The persecution is meaningless and ugly. You will win.”

2016-6-11-europe-05
Bertrand, an EU staff member, signed the petition against forced organ harvesting in China. He said, “I want to help, so that Falun Gong [practitioners] can freely practice their belief, and the world will be a better place.”

Raphael Mukandila Ngalula from Congo had talked to practitioners last month while the European Parliament was in session, and learned about the organ harvesting atrocities in China. He was in Strasbourg to meet with MEPs. “This is intolerable in the 21st century,” he said. “Keep up your good work. People in China should have the freedom of speech, just like the Europeans. They should enjoy justice, tolerance, and freedom of thought. These are the values that the Chinese government should accept and promote.”

Raphael said that he brought up the organ harvesting in China during his meetings with the MEPs, and urged them to co-sign it. One of the MEPs from France did sign the statement.

2016-6-11-europe-06
Nicolas, a reporter from a French student radio station, talked to practitioners for an hour. He came back the second day for a more detailed interview and also signed the petition.

Fabienne Saits from France had never heard about the persecution of Falun Gong. “I was shocked. It is terrifying. It has never been reported by any media,” she said. A practitioner told her that many governments and organizations have chosen to turn a blind eye to this atrocity out of concern for economic interests. Fabienne noted that overemphasis on economic interests sometimes hurts people.

She was on her way to a meeting and said she would collect signatures from the 100-plus attendees who would be there. She added that she would also ask her MEPs for help. “We support you. Our hearts are always with you. I will tell more people about this,” said Fabienne.

Category: Voices of Support Worldwide

From Ridicule to Respect: A Change in Chinese Tourists in Paris, France

May 25, 2016 | By Minghui correspondent Zhou Wenying in Paris, France

(Minghui.org) Ms. Jun sets up posters near the Eiffel Tower every day to raise awareness of the persecution of Falun Gong [also known as Falun Dafa] by the communist regime in China.

She comes across many tourists from China each day. Many of them, after talking to her, understand what the persecution is about and thank her for her efforts. Occasionally, some who had been misled by the Chinese regime’s propaganda against Falun Gong would verbally abuse her. Ms. Jun would remain calm and polite, and her friendly gestures soften their attitude. They eventually listened to her and treated her with respect.

2016-5-23-paris-1

2016-5-23-paris-2

2016-5-23-paris-3

2016-5-23-paris-4
Posters and banners near Eiffel Tower

From Insults and Ridicule to Praise

Ms. Jun tried to talk to a group of Chinese tourists one day. They refused to listen, ridiculed her, and got on the bus. Before they left, Ms. Jun waved goodbye and said, “Stay safe. If you would remember ‘Falun Dafa is good,’ it would bring you and your family good fortune.”

The same group came back to the Eiffel Tower the next day, and Ms. Jun didn’t hesitate to talk to them about Falun Gong again. One of them said to her, “You still want to talk to us? We made fun of you yesterday. Aren’t you upset?” She replied, “No, we practice ‘Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.’ I just wanted to let you know about the practitioners in China who are being persecuted.”

The tourist told her that they didn’t think that she would be there because of what they did to her the day before. “When you told us to stay safe and wished us good fortune after we got on the bus, we felt bad. We thought you, a Falun Gong practitioner, were quite awesome because you weren’t angered by our words.”

Six of them listened to Ms. Jun and quit the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its youth organizations, to show their disapproval of the regime’s decision to persecute Falun Gong.

Chinese Tourist Defends Falun Gong

Another time, Ms. Jun tried to talk to a group of tourists about quitting the Chinese Communist Party, in light of the crimes committed by the regime.

One of them disputed, “We believe in the CCP. Why should we quit?” Ms. Jun explained to them that over 80 million Chinese people died unnatural deaths after the CCP took power in 1949. “You don’t want to be part of the CCP and devote your life to it as you swore you would when you joined the Party,” she replied.

When Ms. Jun talked about the “self-immolation” hoax on Tiananmen Square” in 2001, a Chinese tourist interrupted her. “Please let me speak for you,” the woman said. “As I repeatedly watched that so-called news in 2001, I suspected that it was staged by the CCP.”

She said she was a firefighter and that “a fire blanket is so heavy that it couldn’t have been thrown easily in the air before it landed on the person on fire. Also, the person couldn’t have stayed sitting up if that heavy blanket landed on him. It would push him down. Thirdly, the blanket seemed to appear right after the person was done shouting. The perfect timing just made it seem rehearsed. I couldn’t convince myself that things just happened that way. The CCP staged it to frame Falun Gong.”

Ms. Jun agreed and added, “Exactly. Also, his hair and the plastic bottle in his lap remained untouched, but his face and clothes were badly burned after the fire was put out. It was not possible.”

At that moment, other tourists told Ms. Jun that they were convinced. About 20 of them quit the CCP and its youth organizations.

Chinese version available

Category: Clarifying the Truth

France 5 Exposes Organ Harvesting From Living Falun Gong Practitioners in China

March 30, 2016 | By a Falun Gong practitioner in France

(Minghui.org) France 5, one of the major French public television networks focusing on factual programming, covered the forced organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners in China in its program The Health Magazine on March 10, 2016.

Alexis Genin, a neurobiologist and scientific adviser to Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting (DAFOH), was interviewed during the program. Below is the English translation of the program in French.

2016-3-27-fr-tv-organ-harvest
France 5, one of the major French public television networks, interviewed Alexis Genin on March 10 and discussed the Chinese regime’s harvesting of organs from living Falun Gong practitioners in China.

Host 1: Hello! You are a neurobiologist and scientific adviser to DAFOH, an organization that denounces the unethical harvesting of organs. When we say unethical removal of organs, what does it mean?

AG: Well, organ donation is regulated by principles, that is, voluntary organ donation. In real life, this is not what happens in many countries, where the organ trade has become a lucrative business. This is because people often pay $50,000 to $100,000 for an organ.

Host 2: Which countries has your organization looked at?

AG: Historically, India was the first country that had systematic organ trafficking. After the law in that country changed in the 80s and 90s, medical tourists turned to other countries. Another example is Brazil, where organs are collected and traded by criminal networks. In recent years, however, China has become top of the list globally.

Host 1: What is special about China?

AG: We did not know this until 2006. In fact, organ transplants skyrocketed in China in the 2000s, from hundreds of cases in late 90s to more than 20,000 a year. These numbers come from official statistics. So, where are they from then?

The Confucius tradition in China is against organ donation. Because the body needs to be kept intact, there is no spontaneous organ donation in China; nor do programs exist to promote voluntary donations.

After a long period of hesitation, the Chinese government finally admitted the organs sometimes came from prisoners on death row. But this cannot explain everything. Amnesty International believes there are about 2,000 executions every year, while the number of organ transplants exceeds 20,000. So there are 18,000 organ transplants, or 18,000 deaths each year, that cannot be explained.

Host 2: So, that means [organ] trafficking does exist. Is it a mafia network like in other countries, or is it persecution of certain groups in society?

AG: This is an important question DAFOH asked. DAFOH stands for Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting. We began to investigate China in 2006 after media reports indicated forced organ removal from prisoners in military hospitals. Regarding these allegations, DAFOH conducted three types of investigations simultaneously. One is to check Chinese scientific publications to see if there is any trace of organ trafficking. The other two are independent research to identify sources of these organs.

The results were surprising. When you look at published scientific articles from China in the 2000s, there were hundreds and hundreds of transplants, without any reference to the organs’ origins. These are findings of DAFOH, which led major scientific journals to request full traceability of organs in 2011.

But more astonishing findings come from two independent investigations, one conducted by David Kilgour, a former Canadian Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and the other one by Ethan Gutmann, an expert on Chinese issues.

In the first investigation, David Kilgour called hundreds of transplant facilities in China through a network of investigators, asking how to obtain organs. The answer was: if you can afford it, you will have the organ in two or three weeks. Please keep in mind that in France, 18,000 people are waiting for organs, and the average waiting time is three years. But in China, if you have $50,000 or $100,000, you can get it in two weeks. When investigators asked where the organs were from, they were told, clearly and transparently, that they [the organs] were from Chinese prisoners, in particular, practitioners of a traditional Chinese meditation named Falun Gong. This is the first investigation.

In the second investigation, Ethan Gutmann took a quite different approach. He interviewed people who had been detained in China, including Christians, Tibetans, Uighurs, and also Falun Gong, to see if they had seen traces of systematic organ removal in forced labor camps. The result was striking: one half of these detainees received comprehensive physical examination while detained. Instead of checking their health condition, these medical tests were evaluating if their organs were healthy: whether the eyes are working well, the corneas can be removed, the heart rate is good, or if the liver is in a good shape.

Host 2: This is absolutely disturbing. Who are these Falun Gong members? It seems they are being persecuted in China, and there are many of them.

AG: Falun Gong is a traditional practice in China, just like how people here do jogging as a morning exercise. There is such a cultivation practice tradition in China, which also includes Tai Chi. Falun Gong suddenly became popular in China in 1990s. The Chinese government estimated there were about 70 million people practicing it in late 1990s.

Host 2: So it was dangerous to the country?

AG: It is not so in any circumstances. But with a totalitarian regime in China, 70 million people following the same practice without the government’s intervention is seen as a potential “danger.” This is how the suppression started. According to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, there are about 500,000-700,000 Falun Gong being held in forced reeducation camps at any given time. These are huge numbers… because it means a potential organ bank of 700,000 people at any given time.

Host 1: Do you expect Europe to exert pressure on this?

AG: Actions have been taken in Europe because of these investigation results. Back in 2006, they were considered allegations, but further followups proved they are facts. Rather than a mafia network, it is a network organized at the highest level in the Chinese government, because many transplants occurred in military hospitals. The European Parliament reacted quickly, and a resolution was passed in late 2013, strongly condemning such organ harvesting. This indicates it is indeed organized trafficking at the top government level, and Falun Gong practitioners are the primary victims.

Host 1: Thank you very much. The website is: http://www.dafoh.org, and one can find further information from the book of State Organs: Transplant Abuse in China.

AG: I would also like to add that, for anyone who wants to help, there is an online petition at the DAFOH website, and more than two million people have signed it. Thank you.

Chinese version available

Category: Falun Dafa in the Media

France: Gathering at the Eiffel Tower to Wish Master Li Hongzhi a Happy New Year

February 06, 2016

(Minghui.org) Falun Dafa practitioners in France assembled in front of the Eiffel Tower on the weekend before the Chinese New Year to send holiday greetings to the founder of Falun Dafa, Master Li Hongzhi. They wished to express appreciation for his sharing this ancient cultivation practice with the world.

2016-2-france-falun-gong
Wishing Master Li Hongzhi a Happy New Year

“Practicing Falun Dafa has changed my life and my view of the world,” said Helenne, a French woman who started practicing Falun Dafa in 1999.

“I’ve become more optimistic,” she said. “When encountering difficulties, I have confidence that I can overcome, because the principles that I follow in daily life, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, give me strength. I know, as long as I follow the principles, I can conquer all difficulties.”

Helenne continued, “We are assembled here and wish Master Li Hongzhi a Happy New Year. This is our way to express our appreciation. I wish to thank Master Li Hongzhi and Falun Dafa for renewing my life.”

Isabelle, from Marseille, said she had received a Falun Dafa flyer a long time ago, but back then she just casually put it away and didn’t give it another thought until 2009. One day, she suddenly recalled the flyer, and went to find it. From the flyer, she found the Falun Dafa website. She downloaded the main book, Zhuan Falun, and finished reading it in three days.

“I believe in everything Master Li said in this book,” said Isabelle. “This is what I had always been looking for.”

Isabelle said that practicing Falun Dafa healed her knee problem, and helped her become a happy, efficient, and confident person.

A Chinese practitioner at the event, Ms. Gao, said: “We take photos and send the New Year greeting to Master Li every year in front of the Eiffel Tower. I am grateful that Master Li taught us the Great Law. I found the answers to many questions deep in my heart. Words cannot express my gratitude to Master Li.”

Chinese version available

Category: Greetings