Washington DC: Forum Speakers Recount Acts of Torture, Call for Justice

May 31, 2016 | By a Falun Gong practitioner in Washington DC

(Minghui.org) A forum on “Human Rights Atrocities in China—Bringing Perpetrators to Justice” was held at the Rayburn House Office Building on May 26, 2016. Ten Falun Gong practitioners recounted the tortures they endured, and submitted the names of over 200 perpetrators to the U.S. Government, requesting further investigations and justice.

Former dictator Jiang Zemin, the person who initiated the persecution, was one of the Chinese Communist Party officials and police officers named. All information on the perpetrators originated from the Minghui.org website.

Representatives from the U.S. Congress, State Department, and U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) attended the forum. The Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act of 2015, introduced last month, aims to strengthen religious freedom protection through increased inter-agency cooperation, and sanctions against countries and individual perpetrators.

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Speakers at the “Human Rights Atrocities in China—Bringing Perpetrators to Justice” forum, which was held in the Rayburn House Office Building on May 26, 2016.

“Death Bed” Survivor Calls for Justice

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Ms. Ma Chunmei

The “death bed” is one of the many torture devices used by the Chinese Communist Party police on prisoners of conscience, especially Falun Gong practitioners. The victim is tied to a metal bed and not allowed to move for a long period of time. Other types of torture, such as forced-feeding, are employed at the same time.

“They [guards in Heizuizi Forced Labor Camp] tied my limbs to a metal bed and inserted a rubber tube into my stomach to force-feed me. They pushed and pulled the rubber tube to inflict pain. I vomited the salty corn paste along with blood all over the place. They laughed. I noticed that one of them was taking pictures,” said Ms. Ma Chunmei from northeastern China, a “death bed” survivor who described one of the ways she was tortured in November 1999. She was a United Nations refugee, and resettled in the U.S. in September 2009.

Ms. Ma was handcuffed to an upper bunkbed in 2000 after she protested in the labor camp cafeteria that she was being tortured. She was suspended with her feet off the ground, so that her arms and handcuffed wrists bore her entire weight. She vomited and fainted.

“After I regained consciousness, I realized that the guards had cuffed my outstretched limbs onto a metal bed. I was restrained in that position for three days and nights without any food or water. I couldn’t move after being released from the death bed.”

Ms. Ma submitted a list of 79 perpetrators who were responsible for her suffering in a persecution aimed at coercing citizens to abandon their beliefs.

Surviving Sister: “Our Grief Never Ends”

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Ms. Gao Rongrong

Ms. Gao Rongrong died at the age of 37 on June 16, 2005. She suffered six to seven hours of non-stop high-voltage electric baton shocks on May 7, 2004, and was disfigured.

Ms. Gao Weiwei, her elder sister, said at the forum, “Rongrong was detained in secrecy during the final three months of her life. We don’t know how much she suffered. The grief in our family never ends.”

The 610 Office, a Party-based security agency in charge of persecuting Falun Gong, and local police continued to harass the family after Gao Rongrong’s death. Her elder brother, once a senior editor of a newspaper, has been forced to leave home and move frequently to avoid harassment.

Ms. Gao Weiwei, along with her father and another younger sister, made it to the United States in May 2014. She submitted a list of 88 names of people who were personally responsible for the death of her younger sister, Gao Rongrong.

Support from U.S. Officials

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Ms. Abiola Afolayan, representative for Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee.

“Falun Gong practitioners have long been subjected to systematic, brutal, bloody, and wholly unwarranted suppression and persecution,” said Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas in her statement.

“I will continue to work with my colleagues on various legislative initiatives, urging the government of China to end abuses perpetrated upon the Falun Gong practitioners, and embark on a path towards peace, harmony, and inclusion of all persons on China.”

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Ms. Tina Mufford, policy analyst, East Asia-Pacific, U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

“The stories of your bravery, your courage, your perseverance, and survival is truly inspiring,” said Ms. Tina Mufford, policy analyst, East Asia-Pacific at USCIRF. She called the persecution “horrific, stark, and mind-boggling.”

“Your testimonies here today are so important to let the world know what’s happening in your country, what religious violations really mean, how they have destroyed so many lives, and how you still survive in the face of all that you have experienced.”

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Ms. Wang Chunyan displays photos of her friends who were tortured to death because they refused to abandon their belief in Falun Gong.

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Ms. Yin Liping was gang-raped in the notorious Masanjia Forced Labor Camp. She submitted the names of 42 perpetrators.

Chinese version available

Category: Overview of persecution

Washington DC: Forum Explores Movement to Prosecute Former Chinese Dictator

September 18, 2015 | By Minghui correspondent in Washington D.C.

(Minghui.org) A forum held at the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill on September 15 discussed the current movement in which thousands are suing former Chinese leader Jiang Zemin for persecuting Falun Gong. Representatives of the Falun Gong group, lawyers, and human rights advocates provided historical background, personal testimony and analysis of the movement’s significance.

Frank Lee, spokesperson for Falun Dafa Association in Washington D.C., said Chinese citizens are risking their lives by filing criminal complaints against Jiang. “Facing a totalitarian regime, they did so using their real identifies, including name, address, and personal information. We admire their courage and selflessness,” he said.

Jiang launched the persecution of Falun Gong in July 1999, explained Lee. At least 178,000 criminal complaints have been filed against Jiang between late May to mid-September. Most of these complaints come from China with copies submitted to the Minghui website and some have been from plaintiffs residing in other countries including the US, Canada, Australia, and Europe.

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A forum was hosted on September 15 by the Falun Dafa Association in Washington D.C. to support lawsuits against Jiang Zemin.

An Act of Conscience

Lee said these lawsuits will not only bring Jiang to justice, but will also provide a clearer picture of the persecution of Falun Gong.

Since the persecution began in 1999, the government-controlled media in China has been spreading defamatory propaganda both in China and overseas, explained Lee. He said that when a large number of Chinese people were misled and became hostile towards practitioners, they became numb to this severe human rights violation. And this acquiescence led to even harsher mistreatment of practitioners, including organ harvesting from living practitioners, said Lee.

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Frank Lee, spokesperson for Falun Dafa Association in Washington D.C.

Criminal Responsibility and Civil Liability

Human rights lawyer Ye Ning said that more than 300,000 practitioners in China have been subjected to detention or imprisonment. Minghui has confirmed nearly 4,000 deaths of practitioners as a result of abuse in police custody.

Mr. Ye brought up the fact that the United States signed the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide in 1988 and that the first prosecution for crimes against humanity took place at the Nuremberg Trials following the World War II.

The systematic and massive suppression of Falun Gong practitioners in China, especially live organ harvesting, should be opposed by all governments and organizations, he said.

In addition to criminal responsibility, Ye said that Jiang should also be held civilly liable because tens of millions of practitioners and their families suffered as a result of the suppression.

Suing Jiang Will Bring Real Changes

Martin McMahon, a civil rights lawyer who practices in New York and Washington D.C., said he was encouraged by the movement to bring Jiang to justice.

When a communist-regime backed physical assault against Falun Gong practitioners took place in 2003 in the US, McMahon accepted the practitioners’ case. “The violence stopped within 24 hours after the lawsuit was filed,” McMahon said.

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Civil rights lawyer Martin McMahon has represented practitioners in lawsuits against Jiang.

McMahon recently submitted several lawsuits against Jiang on behalf Falun Gong practitioners. His assistant, Jameson Fox, said the peaceful and persistent efforts of practitioners to raise awareness of this issue will eventually bring real changes.

Path to a Better Future

Human rights advocate Wei Jingsheng said the downfall of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is inevitable. “The Party is vicious and it has consistently harmed Chinese people. No one with a conscience would want to side with it and share in its ill fate.”

Dr. Charles Lee, spokesperson for the Tuidang (Quit-the CCP) Center, said that the number of Chinese people who have formally renounced the CCP and affiliated organizations is now over 200 million, a movement that began in late 2004.

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Human rights advocate Wei Jingsheng

At least ten Falun Gong practitioners in Washington D.C. have filed criminal complaints against Jiang and several of them gave testimonies at the forum.

Plaintiff Wang Chunrong was arrested three times and her home was ransacked each time. She used to be the chairperson of the Board of Directors at a large accounting firm. For her belief in Falun Gong, she was first sent to Masanjia Labor Camp and then to the Liaoning Province Women’s Prison.

“In the persecution of Falun Gong, Jiang has committed genocide, torture, and crimes against humanity,” Wang said. “This has created tremendous pain and loss for practitioners and their families. Suing Jiang will help stop this tragedy.”

Chinese version available

Category: Prosecuting Jiang Zemin