Toronto, Canada: Falun Gong Practitioners Raise Awareness of the Persecution at a Large Community Festival

September 16, 2016 | By a Falun Gong practitioner in Toronto

(Minghui.org) Falun Gong practitioners participated in the 40th Cabbagetown Festival in downtown Toronto on September 10-11, 2016, after being invited by festival organizers. The event included a grand parade, art performance, and handicraft product exhibition. Over 100,000 people attended the event.

The Falun Gong (also known as Falun Dafa) booth had banners with the words “Falun Dafa is Wonderful” and “Stop the Chinese Communist Party’s Live Organ Harvesting.” The Falun Gong practitioners’ yellow T-shirts, Falun Gong books, and small paper-folded lotus flowers at the booth drew the attention of many visitors. Many booth visitors also signed postcards to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, asking him to raise the issue of Falun Gong during an upcoming meeting with the Chinese Prime Minister on his visit to Canada. The postcards also requested that the Canadian Prime Minister urge his counterpart to stop the persecution of Falun Gong and the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) state-sanctioned organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners. Visitors also signed petition forms to Canadian Parliament requesting help in stopping the persecution.

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Visitors pause to talk with Falun Gong practitioners and learn more about the practice and the CCP’s persecution.

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Visitors sign the petition at the Falun Gong booth.

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People from all walks of life signed the petition.

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Visitors pause to sign the petition no matter rain or shine.

The signature collection was warm and touching. Many people signed the postcards, including a candidate for Toronto City Council, the president of a global organization, handicapped persons, and others, young and old.

The first day was windy and rainy at times. Despite the weather, many visitors paused to sign the petition at the Falun Gong booth. Some visitors were tearful after listening to practitioners explain the CCP’s live organ harvesting, and they signed the petition right away. Some visitors also asked their family members and friends to sign after signing themselves.

Candidate for Toronto City Council: Let More People Know About the Persecution

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Zuhair Syed, candidate for Toronto City Council.

Zuhair Syed, a candidate for Toronto City Council, passed by and came to the Falun Gong booth. Mr. Syed said, “The Communist Party kills people to harvest organs for profit. It is a tragedy. Many people have been killed for organs. I think it is a disgrace for the Party, as it allows the live organ harvesting in China. It is one of the most important human rights issues in the world.”

He said he would stress the issue in his campaign for the city council and let people know about the human rights violations. He thought the best way to stop the persecution was to let all people around the world know about it. If people don’t know, they can’t do anything. But people who know about the persecution will tell others about it. When all people know the facts, the CCP will have to stop the persecution. Mr. Syed commended the practitioners with a thumbs-up after signing the postcard and petition form.

President of a Global Organization: I Will Help You to Stop the Persecution

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Afewerki Dagnew, president of a global organization.

Afewerki Dagnew is president and chief executive officer of a global organization. When passing by, he saw the practitioners distributing flyers of Hard to Believe, a free documentary film about the killing of prisoners of conscience for their organs in China.

He got a stack of flyers from a practitioner and said, “I want to distribute these flyers to community leaders from each country I often meet with. I will tell them about the human rights persecution. We will work together to help you solve the issue.”

Mr. Dagnew said he signed the petition form long ago. He said, “I signed it as I want to help Falun Gong practitioners to stop the persecution and have them live peacefully and safely in this world. It is a human rights issue.”

He left his contact information with a practitioner and asked to keep in touch before departing.

Charitable Organization Head: It Is Too Horrible to Save One Person by Killing Another.

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Dennis Silva, head of a charitable organization.

Dennis Silva, the head of a charitable organization, signed the petition against the CCP’s live organ harvesting. He said, “It is a terrible thing to take organs from a living person for transplantation and leave the donor dying. The live organ harvesting is only for profit. It is too horrible to save one person by killing another.”

Ontario Merchandiser: I Hope Falun Gong Practitioners in China Will Gain Freedom.

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Ontario merchandiser Dianne Legault (right) and her friend.

Dianne Legault, a merchandiser from Azilda, attended the event with her friend after driving for over three and half hours. They stepped forward to take a look when passing by and seeing the small lotus flowers at the Falun Gong booth.

Dianne and her friend signed the postcards and petition form. She said, “Falun Gong practitioners have no freedom to do what they like, but are persecuted and victims of live organ harvesting. So I’d like to sign the petition against the persecution. I hope that Falun Gong practitioners in China gain freedom and have a better life.”

Vietnamese Visitor: I’d Like to Buy Zhuan Falun in Vietnamese

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Thu Pham and her daughter.

Near the end of the event, Thu Pham, a Vietnamese visitor with her daughter, passed by the Falun Gong booth. She signed the petition form and accepted a flyer. She asked whether Zhuan Falun, the main book of Falun Gong, was available at the booth, as she wanted to buy a copy.

She said, “I read the introduction of Falun Gong in a Vietnamese newspaper and Internet. The practice is beneficial to health. So I’d like to get a copy of the book to read.”

A practitioner advised her to buy a copy from the Tianti Bookstore as the practitioners did not have it available in the booth. Thu took a business card for the bookstore and thanked the practitioner. She said she would start practicing Falun Gong after reading the book.

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events

Over 50,000 Petition Canadian Prime Minister to Help Stop Genocide in China

August 08, 2016

(Minghui.org) Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is about to receive more than 50,000 postcards before his visit to China this September. Each card requests the Prime Minister to bring up China’s human rights violations with Chinese leaders, in the hopes that international pressure will help stop the state-sanctioned organ harvesting from persecuted Falun Gong practitioners.

Since July, Falun Gong practitioners in Toronto have been holding activities every day at tourists spots, in the downtown area, and at busy intersections, raising public awareness of the 17-year-long persecution of Falun Gong in China. The brutal persecution has resulted in over 4,000 confirmed deaths (though the number is likely much higher), and possibly more than one million deaths from forced organ harvesting. A major postcard campaign resulted in tens of thousands of signed cards that will be presented to Prime Minister Trudeau.

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Falun Gong practitioners hold banners to draw public attention to the persecution in China.

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In the Richmond Hill area on August 4, Falun Gong practitioners collected 200 signatures in just two hours.

The practitioners’ signature campaign has received strong support from all walks of life in Toronto.

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Local resident Steven was shocked by the Chinese regime’s crime of organ harvesting.

“I cannot imagine it. This is genocide,” said local resident Steven about the Chinese regime’s organ harvesting. “We must stop it immediately. We need to let the United Nations know. China is a communist country, so people outside China should help Falun Gong’s peaceful resistance. I hope PM Trudeau will help.”

“The brutality should be exposed on social media,” Steven added, “to let more people know about it.”

Johnny Wong, originally from Hong Kong, asked practitioners if he could donate food to them. “I am in the food business, and I really want to support Falun Gong,” he said.

“I heard about Falun Gong and the persecution when I was in Hong Kong. Falun Gong is a peaceful group. The persecution is unjust and anti-human. How can we let forced organ harvesting happen?” Mr. Wong said. Then he added, “I admire Falun Gong’s peaceful resistance.”

“If I broke the law, sure, you could put me in jail. But how can you kill me if I only want to be a good person?” Wong asked, incredulous that a peaceful cultivation practice would be persecuted.

Before leaving, Mr. Wong summed up his feelings. “All I want is world peace. I hope the persecution of Falun Gong will stop immediately,” he said.

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Idzamma wrote to PM Trudeau on the postcard: “Please support this group.”

Idzamma, a local student, casually signed the postcard before he listened to the practitioners. After talking to them, Idzamma asked if he could sign a new postcard. “I need to do it seriously,” he said. “I hope everybody will treat this seriously.”

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James condemned the forced organ harvesting. He hopes that the Chinese government will respect its citizens’ human rights.

Many Canadians believe that Canada needs to speak up about this issue. A number of people who signed postcards said that they would also urge their friends and family members to sign the petition online. Residents of Canada are urged to sign the petition to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau online here.

Chinese version available

Category: Organ Harvesting

Toronto Dragon Boat Festival: “I Admire Falun Gong’s Spirit”

June 24, 2016

(Minghui.org) Mr. Wang from Liaoning, China, was glad to run into Falun Gong practitioners at the 28th Dragon Boat Festival on Toronto’s Centre Island on June 18 and 19.

“I signed a petition back in China condemning the persecution,” Mr. Wang said to a practitioner at the Falun Gong booth. “I also quit the Party. A Falun Gong practitioner in China helped me.”

Mr. Wang said that the persecution of Falun Gong is really brutal. “I truly admire Falun Gong’s spirit. I respect them. I never believed the communist party’s propaganda,” he said. “Actually very few people in China nowadays still believe it. In Canada, I read more materials, and I’ve confirmed that I was right. The persecution and the state-sanctioned organ harvesting are all facts.”

Mr. Wang had come to Toronto to visit his children. He was about to bicycle around the island and watch the dragon boat games of 160 teams, which attracted more than 100 thousand people.

After his bicycle ride, Mr. Wang came back to chat with the practitioners some more.

“Do you know that the head of the communist party is about to fall soon? No dictator has a good end,” he said to practitioners. “Many Chinese should wake up now. Some people thought that the persecution of Falun Gong has nothing to do with them, and they don’t have to pay any attention to it. But I believe that everybody has a conscience and a responsibility. Only if everybody stands up against the evil, will we see justice.”

“I am rooted in China, and I believe China has hope. I also believe that Falun Gong practitioners will be able to go back to China soon,” he said before saying good-bye to the practitioners.

During the festival, practitioners demonstrated the exercises, set up a photo exhibition, offered free exercise teaching, passed out materials, helped Chinese people to quit the communist party, and collected signatures on petition.

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Young Falun Gong practitioners are demonstrating the exercises.

Many Chinese tourists quit the party with practitioners’ help. Mr. Huang, a CEO of an enterprise in Guangzhou, China, said to practitioners, “It is great that you can freely practice and distribute information so that more people will know what Falun Gong really is.”

“Many party members don’t have belief in the party, and we all know the brutality of the persecution,” Mr. Huang said, and gave his card to practitioners to stay in touch.

A Taiwanese student did not believe what practitioner Ms. Wang told him. “I’ve been to Beijing. It looks great, and my father also said China is great,” he said. Ms. Wang said: “We are not trying to tell you that China is not great. I am just telling you about the persecution. We are just against the persecution.”

Ms. Wang gave him a flyer. The Taiwanese young man sat under a tree and carefully read the flyer. After a while, he came back to Ms. Wang and asked what Falun Gong’s teaching is. Ms. Wang told him that the core principles are Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance,” and then gave him a copy of Zhuan Falun (the main book of Falun Gong), saying, “You will know what Falun Gong really is after you read this.”

The student then went back to the tree and began reading the book. A few hours later, he came back and asked to learn the five sets of exercises.

Many Western tourists also learned the exercises at the festival.

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Ashras from Iran (right) learns the exercises. She had come to Toronto to visit her son. She told her son that she really liked the exercises and wanted to join the local exercise site.

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Maryam and her mother Bhnaz learned the exercises. Maryam had signed a Falun Gong petition in London, and written to her parliament member asking for help to stop the persecution. “I love the exercises. I can feel the energy,” she said. Her mother also said she planned to keep practicing.

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Hanniel, a Toronto resident, could not believe that the persecution is still going on. “We must let more people know about it and help to stop the persecution,” he said.

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A festival organizer came to practitioners’ booth and said: “Falun Dafa is good.” She asked for Falun Gong materials in English and Chinese for her friends.

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events