HRW Urges China Do Not Host War Criminal Sudanese President Al-Bashir


(New York) – The Chinese government’s invitation to Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir is an affront to victims of heinous crimes committed in Darfur, Human Rights Watch said today. Media reports indicated that al-Bashir will travel to China on June 27, 2011, at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Hu Jintao, to discuss Sudan’s relationship with China and promoting peace in Sudan.

In 2009 and 2010, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants for al-Bashir on charges of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide. Sudan has persistently obstructed the ICC’s efforts to ensure that the alleged perpetrators answer the charges against them for crimes in Darfur. Continue reading

Teaching the Chinese about the Holocaust


Rafael Medoff, via The Jewish Tribune, Tuesday, 12 October 2010 -

The problem for the Beijing government is that these Chinese heroes of the Holocaust were nationalists, not Communists like the current regime.

Twenty Chinese educators who took part in a Yad Vashem seminar in Jerusalem last week may be surprised to learn about the little-known role of several Chinese citizens in the rescue of Jews from the Nazis.

One of these little-known Chinese rescuers was Pan Jun-Shun, who moved to Russia in 1916 to find work. He was living in the city of Kharkov, in the Soviet Ukraine, when the Germans invaded the area in 1941. Pan saved a Jewish girl named Ludmilla Genrichovna from the Nazi roundups by hiding her in his home. Pan was the first Chinese citizen to be named one of the ‘Righteous Among the Nations’ by Yad Vashem. Continue reading

Annual Human Rights Report release at U.S. Capitol brings together scholars, activists and victims of persecution in China


WASHINGTON DC- The Falun Dafa Information Center marked the release of its 2010 Annual Report on Monday with a press conference and panel discussion at the U.S. Capitol Building.

Levi Browde, executive director of the Falun Dafa Information Center, introduced the key findings of the report, including the observation that tens of millions of Falun Gong practitioners continue to face “lawlessness and brutality” in Mainland China, and that they constitute “the largest group of prisoners of conscience” in the world. (read the executive summary)

“In the persecution of Falun Gong, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is developing more effective and comprehensive mechanisms for brutal suppression and censorship,” explained Browde. “We’re already seeing the CCP unleashing these mechanisms onto other targets…using them against Tibetans, Christians and other persecuted groups, as well as for hiding incidents like SARS and poisonous products, the effects of which reach far beyond China’s borders.”

“In this sense, the persecution of Falun Gong is serving as the CCP’s test lab for tyranny, and the longer it continues, the greater the threat to us all.”

The annual report (full report) includes details of 109 Falun Gong practitioner who died in 2009 as a result of torture and abuse in China, in addition to over 2,000 more who were sentenced arbitrarily to reeducation through labor or prison camps.  Due to the difficulties associated with obtaining information from inside China, the actual numbers are believed to be significantly higher. The report also includes analysis of the origins, motivations, and tactics behind Falun Gong’s peaceful resistance to persecution.

The presentation of the annual report’s key findings  were followed by a panel discussion moderated by Nina Shea, director of the Hudson Institution’s Center for Religious Freedom and commissioner with the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.  It brought together human rights scholars and authors David Matas, a Canadian human rights and immigration attorney and 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Nominee, and Ethan Gutmann, author of a forthcoming book on Falun Gong.

Among the findings cited by Gutmann was his estimate, based on extensive surveys with former Chinese detainees, that there are between 450,000 – 1,000,000 Falun Gong prisoners of conscience in China at any given time. Gutmann also explored the history of China’s online censorship, surveillance and denial of service attack capabilities, which he found originated as tools to be used against Falun Gong.

These findings, noted Ms. Shea, highlighted the intersection between human rights or religious freedom issues and U.S. national security concerns.

The panel also featured Dr. Shiyu Zhou, a leading Falun Gong activist for the cause of internet freedom in China, and Ms. Pang Jin, a young Washington DC resident whose mother and aunt were both sentenced in sham trials to long prison terms in 2009 for their belief in Falun Gong.

Ms. Pang referred in her speech to House Resolution 605 (news), which passed in March 2010 and which expresses “sympathy to Falun Gong practitioners and their family members who have suffered persecution, intimidation, imprisonment, torture, and even death” for their belief in Falun Gong.

“This kind of support from kind-hearted Americans really gives hope and light to all the people suffering in China,” said Ms. Pang, who lost contact with her mother after she was sent in a show trial to 10 years in prison. (The Falun Dafa Information Center)

Speeches in Support of U.S. House Resolution 605 on Falun Gong (5)- by Representative GUS BILIRAKIS


From the The Falun Dafa Information Center -

[The U.S. House of Representatives passed House Resolution 605 on March 16, 2010 (news). The voting was preceded by a 13-minute-long floor debate during which Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), the resolution's author and Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs spoke, as did Representatives Diane Watson (D-CA) and Lynn Woolsey (D-CA), all in support of the declaration. Representatives Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), who could not attend the debate in person, submitted statements for the record. Below is the Congressional members' full remarks.]

GUS BILIRAKIS (R-FL)

“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of H. Res. 605, which condemns the Chinese government’s targeted, persistent and egregious persecution of Falun Gong practitioners. This resolution was introduced last year to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party’s campaign to suppress the Falun Gong spiritual movement. Sadly, the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners and anyone associated with them, including lawyers who try to defend their human rights, continues today.

Since 1999, 6,000 Falun Gong practitioners have been sentenced to prison, over 100,000 were sentenced to re-education through labor camps, and at least 3,000 died while in police custody. They have been sent to special high security psychiatric hospitals for the “criminally insane” against their will where torture has been widely reported. Lawyers trying to defend their rights have been harassed, beaten and attacked by police officers in order to intimidate them. One of China’s most prominent human rights advocates, Gao Zhiseng, who has defended the rights of many individuals attacked for their religious beliefs, was detained by police in February 2009 and his whereabouts are still unknown. The government continues to deny any involvement in his case.

The Government of China censors all media in China and actively opposes any information exposing its brutality and injustice. But the truth is clear to us today. This resolution is a testament to the millions of victims of the Chinese Communist Party that the Chinese government cannot hide the truth, and its victims will not be forgotten.

This resolution also stands as a statement of the U.S. Congress’s continued support for the inalienable right to freedom of religion and expression recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that applies to all people everywhere. To be taken seriously as a participant in the twenty-first century global economy, China must take the rights of their citizens seriously. Egregious injustices, such as those suffered by the Falun Gong practitioners and others targeted by the Chinese Communist Party, are unacceptable in a civilized world and must end today.”

- From The Falun Dafa Information Center

Related:
- The complete text of U.S. House resolution 605: calling for an immediate end to the campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison, and torture Falun Gong practitioners in China
- Speeches in Support of U.S. House Resolution 605 on Falun Gong (1)- by Representative Diane Watson
- Speeches in Support of U.S. House Resolution 605 on Falun Gong (2)- by Representative ILEANA ROS-LEHTINEN (video)
- Speeches in Support of U.S. House Resolution 605 on Falun Gong (3)- by Representative LYNN WOOLSEY
- Speeches in Support of U.S. House Resolution 605 on Falun Gong (4)- by Representative CHRIS SMITH

Baidu Resumes Censorship of Genocide Lawsuits Against Former China President Jiang Zemin


After 10 hours in which Chinese search engines Baidu and Sogou had stopped filtering information related to lawsuits filed against former regime leader Jiang Zemin, the filtering has been resumed.

On March 31, for the first time, information regarding international lawsuits filed by overseas Falun Gong practitioners against Jiang Zemin was accessible to netizens in China by using the search engine Baidu and keywords related to the lawsuits for genocide, such as “Jiang Zemin Genocide Case.”

They were able to read that Jiang stands accused of torture and genocide in 50 lawsuits that have been filed in 17 different countries by Falun Gong practitioners.

Analyst Lu Gaping (Lu Jiaping), a history scholar who has written online commentaries regarding Jiang’s secretive life and misconduct, had remarked that the change suggested Jiang had lost his political influence in China, though the regime is not ready to reveal the fact to the public.

Soon after the Chinese Epoch Times (Dajiyuan) published two articles on the sudden move made by the two search engines, the Chinese Epoch Times showed up in the first page of search results of Baidu.

At around 7 p.m. when The Epoch Times reporter used Baidu and Sogou to search the same keyword, the Chinese Epoch Times’ name continued to appear and even moved up in the list shown in the first page of search results.

However, at around 11 p.m. EST using Baidu and Sogou to search the same keyword, the situation had suddenly changed. An error message read: “Search result probably does not conform with related laws and regulations; Cannot display results.” (The Epochtimes)

Lawyer Nominated for Nobel Over His Work On China Organ Harvesting


By Geoff Kirbyson, The Lawyers Weekly, Canada, March 19 2010 issue -

David Matas might be the only lawyer in Canada trying to follow in the footsteps of Barack Obama.

While the Winnipeg-based human rights crusader and immigration and refugee lawyer has run for political office in the past, it’s his nomination for the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize that has drawn a link with the most powerful man in the world.

Matas and his research partner, David Kilgour, a federal Alberta MP between 1976 and 2006, have been nominated for their investigation into allegations that Falun Gong followers in China are being murdered for their hearts, kidneys, corneas, livers and other organs.

Matas, 66, says he’s honoured by the nomination but not because of the man who precedes them.

‘If you look at the history of the Nobel Peace Prize award, there’s a wide variety of nominees and backgrounds,’ he says. ‘(The nomination) helps highlight the work that David and I have been doing. It becomes another means of advocacy and promotion to bring attention to the problem and to end the abuse.’

The award’s winner will be announced in October and the presentation ceremony will be held in December.

Matas says he estimates China does about 10,000 organ transplants annually, with roughly one-quarter of the organs coming from prisoners on death row and the balance coming from Falun Gong followers. Initially, virtually all of the organ recipients were foreigners, primarily people from Korea, Hong Kong and Indonesia, but China subsequently began giving its own people preferential treatment for the procedures.

Falun Gong is a religious movement based on the teachings of its founder, Li Hongzhi, which uses aspects of Buddhism, Taoism and modern science. The movement, which began in 1992, became immensely popular in China but the Chinese government considered it a cult and cracked down on it more than a decade ago, persecuting, jailing and executing its followers.

Matas says the Chinese government uses the organ transplants to generate revenue. At one point, prices were listed on an official government website while Chinese hospitals promoted the ‘business’ on their own websites. A kidney, for example, will set somebody back $62,000 while a liver ranges from $98,000 to $130,000, a heart will run you $130,000 to $160,000 and a lung can cost anywhere from $150,000 to $170,000. If you’re into volume discounts, a liver-kidney combination can be had for between $160,000 and $180,000.

‘(The discount) is an indication that people are being killed for their organs rather than everywhere else in the world where people wait for somebody else to die. Why would you get a discount for a combination transplant except that the organs are coming from the same donor?’ he says.

Matas says the most common transplanted organ around the world is the kidney because a donor can donate one and still survive. Except in China, it seems.

‘Our conclusion is multiple organs are being harvested (per donor). We’ve never met or heard of a surviving kidney donor. If there were survivors, you’d think you’d hear about them,’ he says. Continue reading

US House presses China on Falun Gong


AFP, Mar. 17, 2010 -

WASHINGTON — The US House of Representatives on Tuesday urged China to end its “persecution” of the Falungong and rejected Beijing’s charge that the banned spiritual movement is an “evil cult.”

In a nearly unanimous vote, the House called on China to free thousands of practitioners who are said to be imprisoned and to abolish an office tasked with fighting the Falungong.

The House expressed “sympathy to Falungong practitioners and their family members who have suffered persecution, intimidation, imprisonment, torture and even death for the past decade solely because of adherence to their personal beliefs.”

The resolution asked China to “immediately cease and desist from its campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison and torture Falungong practitioners.” Continue reading

The complete text of U.S. House resolution 605: calling for an immediate end to the campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison, and torture Falun Gong practitioners in China


Via The Epochtimes, Mar 16, 2010 -

HRES 605 IH
111th CONGRESS 1st Session
H. RES. 605

Recognizing the continued persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China on the 11th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party campaign to suppress the Falun Gong spiritual movement and calling for an immediate end to the campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison, and torture Falun Gong practitioners.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Ms. ROS-LEHTINEN (for herself, Mr. POE of Texas, Mr. BILIRAKIS, Mr. BURTON of Indiana, Mr. ROHRABACHER, Mr. MARIO DIAZ-BALART of Florida, Mr. MINNICK, and Ms. WATERS) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs

RESOLUTION

Recognizing the continued persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China on the 11th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party campaign to suppress the Falun Gong spiritual movement and calling for an immediate end to the campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison, and torture Falun Gong practitioners.

Whereas Falun Gong is a traditional Chinese spiritual discipline founded by Li Hongzhi in 1992, which consists of spiritual, religious, and moral teachings for daily life, meditation, and exercise, based upon the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance;

Whereas according to the 2008 Annual Report of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, “tens of millions of Chinese citizens practiced Falun Gong in the 1990s and adherents to the spiritual movement inside of China are estimated to still number in the hundreds of thousands despite the government’s ongoing crackdown,” and other estimates published in Western press place the number of Falun Gong adherents currently in China at the tens of millions;

Whereas in 1996, Falun Gong books were banned in China and state media began a campaign criticizing Falun Gong;

Whereas in 1999, Chinese police began disrupting Falun Gong morning exercises in public parks and began searching the homes of Falun Gong practitioners;

Whereas on April 25, 1999, over 10,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered outside the State Council Office of Petitions in Beijing, next to the Communist Party leadership compound, to request that arrested Falun Gong practitioners be released, the ban on publication of Falun Gong books be lifted, and that Falun Gong practitioners be allowed to resume their activities without government interference;

Whereas on the same day, immediately after then-Premier Zhu Rongji met with Falun Gong representatives in his office and agreed to the release of arrested practitioners, Communist Party Chairman Jiang Zemin criticized Zhu’s actions and ordered a crackdown on Falun Gong;

Whereas in June 1999, Jiang Zemin ordered the creation of the 6-10 office, an extrajudicial security apparatus, given the mandate to ‘‘eradicate’’ Falun Gong;

Whereas in July 1999, Chinese police began arresting leading Falun Gong practitioners;

Whereas on July 22, 1999, Chinese state media began a major propaganda campaign to ban Falun Gong for ‘‘disturbing social order’’ and warning Chinese citizens that the practice of Falun Gong was forbidden;

Whereas in October 1999, Party Chairman Jiang Zemin, according to western press articles, ‘‘ordered that Falun Gong be branded as a ‘cult’, and then demanded that a law be passed banning cults’’;

Whereas Chinese authorities have devoted extensive time and resources over the past decade worldwide to distributing false propaganda claiming that Falun Gong is a suicidal and militant ‘‘evil cult’’ rather than a spiritual movement which draws upon traditional Chinese concepts of meditation
and exercise;

Whereas on October 10, 2004, the House of Representatives adopted by voice vote House Concurrent Resolution 304, which had 75 bipartisan co-sponsors, titled ‘‘Expressing the sense of Congress regarding oppression by the Government of the People’s Republic of China of Falun Gong in the United States and in China,’’ and that the text of this resolution noted that ‘‘the Chinese Government has also attempted to silence the Falun Gong movement and Chinese prodemocracy groups inside the United States’’;

Whereas, on October 18, 2005, highly respected human rights attorney Gao Zhisheng wrote a letter to Chinese Communist Party Chairman Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao calling for an end to the persecution of Falun Gong and Chinese authorities, in response, closed his law office and took away his law license, with Chinese security forces suspected of being directly involved in Mr. Gao’s disappearance on February 4, 2009;

Whereas Gao Zhisheng’s family has subsequently been granted political asylum in the United States; Whereas the United Nations Committee Against Torture in its fourth periodic report of China, issued on December 12, 2008, stated that ‘‘The State party should immediately conduct or commission an independent investigation of the claims that some Falun Gong practitioners have been subjected to torture and used for organ transplants and take measures, as appropriate, to ensure that those responsible for such abuses are prosecuted and punished.’’;

Whereas the Amnesty International 2008 annual report states that ‘‘Falun Gong practitioners were at particularly high risk of torture and other ill-treatment in detention . . . during the year 2007 over 100 Falun Gong practitioners were reported to have died in detention or shortly after release as a result of torture, denial of food or medical treatment, and other forms of ill-treatment.’’;

Whereas according to the 2008 Department of State’s Human Rights Report on China, ‘‘Some foreign observers estimated that Falun Gong adherents constituted at least half of the 250,000 officially recorded inmates in re-education through labor (RTL) camps, while Falun Gong sources overseas placed the number even higher.’’;

Whereas according to the 2008 Annual Report of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, ‘‘The (Chinese) central government intensified its nine-year campaign of persecution against Falun Gong practitioners in
the months leading up to the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games.’’;

Whereas Falun Gong-related websites remain among the most systematically and hermetically blocked by China’s Internet firewall; and

Whereas, according to an April 2009 New York Times report, ‘‘In the past year, as many as 8,000 (Falun Gong) practitioners have been detained, according to experts on human rights, and at least 100 have died in custody’’:

Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

(1) expresses sympathy to Falun Gong practitioners and their family members who have suffered persecution, intimidation, imprisonment, torture, and even death for the past decade solely because of adherence to their personal beliefs;

(2) calls upon the Government of the People’s Republic of China to immediately cease and desist from its campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison, and torture Falun Gong practitioners, to immediately abolish the 6-10 office, an extrajudicial security apparatus given the mandate to ‘‘eradicate’’ Falun Gong, and to immediately release Falun Gong practitioners, detained solely for their beliefs, from prisons and re-education through labor (RTL) camps, including those practitioners who are the relatives of United States citizens and permanent residents; and

(3) calls upon the President and Members of Congress to mark the 11th anniversary of Chinese official repression of the Falun Gong spiritual movement appropriately and effectively by publicly expressing solidarity with those practitioners in China persecuted solely because of their personal beliefs, and by meeting with Falun Gong practitioners whenever and wherever possible to indicate that support for freedom of conscience remains a fundamental principle of the United States Government.

- Via the Epochtimes

U.S. House Resolution Calls for End to Falun Gong Persecution in China


WASHINGTON— In a landslide vote, the U.S. House of Representatives

LENDING A VOICE: In this file photo, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) speaks at a July 20, 2007 rally to memorialize the eighth anniversary of the beginning of the Chinese Communist regime's persecution of Falun Gong. The House of Representatives voted 412-1 on March 16 to call for an end to this persecution in China. (Jan Jekielek/The Epoch Times)

voted 412–1 on Tuesday to call for an end to the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China.

House Resolution 605 calls upon the Chinese regime “to immediately cease and desist from its campaign to persecute, intimidate, imprison, and torture Falun Gong practitioners, to immediately abolish the 6-10 office, an extrajudicial security apparatus given the mandate to ‘eradicate’ Falun Gong.”

U.S. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), Ranking member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, authored the legislation.

“The Falun Gong spiritual discipline is based on truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance. Yet these innocents are brutally targeted by the Chinese regime, whose heinous tactics include harvesting the organs of Falun Gong practitioners and violently harassing even those practitioners living in the United States,” she said in a statement.

Nobel Peace Prize nominees, lawyers, and human rights advocates David Kilgour and David Matas document forced organ removal from Falun Gong prisoners of conscience in their book, Bloody Harvest: The killing of Falun Gong for their organs.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that was introduced to the public in 1992 in mainland China. On July 20, 1999, the then-head of the Chinese Communist Party Jiang Zemin initiated the persecution of the spiritual practice.

House Resolution 605, “expresses sympathy to Falun Gong practitioners and their family members who have suffered persecution, intimidation, imprisonment, torture, and even death for the past decade solely because of adherence to their personal beliefs.”

All but one of the 413 members of congress that voted on the resolution recognized the persecution and called for it to end, with 17 abstaining. The lone dissenter was U.S. Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas), known for his opposition to legislation that he perceives to interfere in another country’s affairs.

“The passage and specific text of this resolution [605] is especially significant for it demonstrates that the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China is as urgent today as it ever was,” said Levi Browde, executive director of the Falun Dafa Information Center. “As it recognizes, the reality remains that millions of innocent people in China who practice Falun Gong are at constant risk of arbitrary detention, torture, and death.”

The Falun Dafa Information Center is the official press office for Falun Gong, and also specializes in documenting the human rights abuses Falun Gong practitioners face in China.

Following the resolution’s passage, Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.) said, “In 2002, I was the author of a resolution expressing the sense of the Congress regarding the Chinese government’s oppression of Falun Gong in the United States and in the People’s Republic of China. Sadly, eight years later, the persecution continues.”

In October 2003, the House passed Concurrent Resolution 304, which, in addition to calling for an end to the persecution in China, raised concerns over numerous incidents of physical and other harassment of Falun Gong practitioners and their supporters in the United States. Two other resolutions were passed in the early years of the persecution expressing Congressional condemnation of the Chinese regime’s persecution of Falun Gong.

“The [605] resolution’s content also highlights that attaining genuine freedom and human rights protection for all Chinese people is predicated on ending the persecution of Falun Gong. For how can a civil, healthy society develop when tens of millions are targeted in such a fashion?” said Browde.

Over the past 11 years, Falun Gong practitioners in China have been tortured, killed, sent to labor camps, sent to forced brainwashing centers, and endured other forms of suppression, according to numerous government and NGO reports, including those cited in the resolution.

According to the State Department’s latest human rights report on China, the Falun Gong’s core leadership was “‘singled out for particularly harsh treatment,’ and simply believing in the discipline—without publicly practicing any of its tenets—was enough for practitioners to be punished or imprisoned,” said Congresswoman Diane Watson (D-Calif.).

“It is important not to underestimate the real world impact that this resolution will have. First, by articulating the official position of the U.S. Congress, a leader in the free world, it sets an example for policymakers around the globe to follow. Second, as the resolution’s text is translated into Chinese and circulated among grassroots networks throughout China, it will bring meaningful hope to millions suffering persecution and encourage further nonviolent efforts to end abuses. Moreover, its exposure of Communist Party fabrications and assertion of solidarity with the victims will give pause to would-be persecutors,” said Browde……. (more details from The Epochtimes)

Authors of “Bloody Harvest” on the nomination list of 2010 Nobel Peace Prize


MONTREAL – March 8, 2010 – David Matas, a member of Rights & Democracy‘s Board of Directors, is on the longlist for the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize for his work investigating the alleged killings of Falun Gong followers for their organs in China.

Mr. Matas was nominated along with former Member of Parliament David Kilgour by federal MP Boris Wrzesneskyi and Balfour Hakak, Chair of the Hebrew Writers Association. Mr. Matas and Mr. Kilgour have issued three reports together on the alleged harvesting of organs from imprisoned Falun Gong practitioners. Their latest report, « Bloody Harvest : The Killing of Falun Gong for their organs,»  is available online at http://organharvestinvestigation.net/ .

“David Matas’ work reminds us that the road to peace and human rights for all is one that is pitted with incredible cruelty and injustice,” said Aurel Braun, Chair of Rights & Democracy’s Board of Directors. “We are indeed fortunate to have his talents and experience at the service of the Board. “

Each year, around 200 candidates are submitted to the Norwegian Nobel Committee by individuals qualified to nominate, including members of government, past Laureates and university professors in related fields. The names are normally kept secret for 50 years. A shortlist will be determined over the course of March and the winner will be announced in October. The official presentation of the prize takes place on December 10, International Human Rights Day, in Oslo, Norway.

Rights & Democracy also welcomes the nomination of Chinese human rights defender, Liu Xiaobo, author of the call for democratic reforms in China known as Charter 08. Mr. Xiaobo, who was condemned last December to 11 years in prison on charges of subversion, was nominated by 90 Parliamentarians from the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The nomination is further supported by two former Peace Prize laureates, the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu, as well as former Czech President, Vaclav Havel, and Nobel Prize for Literature laureate, Herta Muller.

- from Rights & Democracy, Canada

10 Forbidden Stories of 2009 in China (2)


Epoch Times Staff, updated: Jan 7, 2010 – (Cont’d)

<< previous

Arrest warrants issued for crimes against humanity

In two breakthrough cases, one in Spain, one in Argentina, top Chinese officials were indicted for crimes against humanity for their roles in the persecution of the Falun Gong spiritual practice.

The Spanish case was against five Chinese officials, the Argentina case against two: Jiang Zemin and Luo Gan. It was the first time that a court recognized the campaign against the group as legally fitting the definition of genocide. In both cases the officials were called before the court to face the charges.

In the Spanish case, the judge sent the accused officials a series of questions about their roles in the persecution of Falun Gong; their failure to respond could result in arrest warrants being issued. The Argentine judge directly issued arrest warrants in his decision, valid for any country with which Argentina has an extradition treaty. The rulings were hailed for bringing justice closer to the victims of the persecution of Falun Gong. (to be cont’d)

Lawyer Speaks on China’s Former Communist Head’s Genocide Case in Argentine (1)


By Lin Lin, Epoch Times Staff, Dec. 25, 2009-

Attorney Dr. Alejandro Cowes. (The Epoch Times)

BUENOS AIRES— A recent landmark ruling was made by Dr. Octavio Aráoz de Lamadrid, the judge of the Argentine Federal and Criminal Corrective Court No. 9. The ruling ordered the indictment and international arrests of former Chinese communist leader Jiang Zemin and his right hand man Luo Gan, on charges of genocide and torture against Falun Gong practitioners in China.

The Epoch Times interviewed one of the plaintiff’s attorneys, Dr. Alejandro Cowes.

Can you tell us briefly about this case and the ruling?

In short, in 2006, Judge Araoz de Lamadrid courageously accepted a complaint from the Association of the Study of Falun Dafa in Argentina, which lead to the investigation and substantiation of the terrible crimes of genocide and torture being committed in Mainland China by the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) against Falun Gong practitioners.

The judge has been faithful to the current trend of international law, in effect, to provide access to the pursuit of justice for victims of crimes against humanity, which is impossible in the country where the victims live and where they suffer such extreme persecution.

Last Friday, after four years of arduous investigation, Judge de Lamadrid ordered the indictments of, and issued arrest warrants for Jiang Zemin and Luo Gan, former leader and former Secretary of the Political and Legal Affairs of the Central Committee of the CCP respectively.

What are the immediate consequences of the resolution?

It was taken into account that both of the accused parties can neither be detained or extradited from China, because the same political apparatus which instigated the persecution persists in enforcing it.

However, when either of the two travel abroad, they can immediately be detained and put in solitary confinement: this order is already set in place with Interpol.

Actual extradition depends on the existence of a treaty with each individual country or, in the absence of such, the willingness of the country to cooperate, where either of these two would happen to be at the time.

And what then: once they would be extradited?

The judge would effect a signed declaration and then would decide on their trial.

(to be cont’d……)

Media Coverage Overlooking the Crime Evidence in Argentine’s Seeking Arrest of Two High-ranking China Officials Case


Statement from the Falun Dafa Information Center, Dec. 25, 2009-

Last week, an Argentine judge indicted and ordered the local Interpol department to seek the arrest of two high-ranking Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials, Jiang Zemin and Luo Gan, for their role in crimes against humanity committed against Falun Gong practitioners. Subsequent media coverage of the decision has exhibited a tendency to frame the lawsuit, the judge’s decision, and the CCP’s response in relativistic terms. That is, framing the story as one of allegations being thrown back and forth between Falun Gong (or the judge) and the CCP with little evaluation of the credibility of the source or the evidence presented to support either position. Such coverage is unfortunate and inaccurate.

The Argentinean judge, Octavio Araoz de Lamadrid, conducted extensive and detailed research over a span of four years before reaching his conclusion that crimes against humanity have taken place with Jiang and Luo counted among those responsible. In fact, of the 140+ page decision he issued, over one hundred pages are an account of the evidence he found of such crimes. This includes first-hand accounts from Falun Gong victims whom he personally interviewed and found to be credible, as well as Amnesty International and United Nations reports.

His final conclusion, cited in the decision was: “The genocidal strategy … comprised a broad range of actions arranged in total contempt for life and human dignity. The designated purpose – the eradication of Falun Gong – was used to justify any means used. Therefore, torment, torture, disappearances, deaths, brainwashing, psychological torture were everyday occurrences in the persecution of its practitioners.” Yet this statement fundamental to the understanding of the case has been missing from most news reports.

Judge Lamadrid clearly took his investigative task seriously and has made an independent assessment of the situation – therein lies the importance of what he has done. It is far from spurious ‘false charges’ as a recent Reuters article unquestioningly cites a Chinese government spokesperson stating. It is therefore disappointing that this aspect of the story has been overlooked or even dismissed in coverage of the case, while vilifying and inaccurate CCP propaganda has been given significant attention.

Falun Gong practitioners have not filed this and other lawsuits as a political or public relations effort to make the Chinese authorities lose face. The suffering that is happening in China is very real, well-documented, and ensconced in a climate of impunity. The use of universal jurisdiction to file overseas lawsuits is a last resort. Falun Gong practitioners who tried suing Jiang inside China were themselves arrested, imprisoned, and tortured.

The Falun Dafa Information Center encourages reporters covering this story to examine the decision itself. The Center has also assembled a brief report that cites third-party confirmation of the brutality and scale of the persecution Falun Gong practitioners face: http://faluninfo.net/article/908/?cid=162.

There is little doubt that what the Chinese regime has done—and continues to do—to Falun Gong fits the Rome Statute’s definition of crimes against humanity. The question lies in what the international community should do about it. Judge’s Lamadrid decision is a solid first step and deserves to be covered as such.

- The Falun Dafa Information Center

Argentine Judge Issues Arrest Warrants for 2 Top China Officials, Jiang Zemin and Luo Gan, for Genocide


By Matthew Robertson, Epoch Times Staff, Dec. 18, 2009 -

In a historic genocide case, an Argentine judge has issued arrest warrants for top Chinese officials for their role in the persecution of the spiritual practice Falun Gong.

Judge Octavio Araoz de Lamadrid’s decision on Dec. 17 is a precedent for Argentina, and is the first time that extraterritoriality has been used in the country to pursue crimes against humanity.

The case follows a similar decision in Spain last month, where five top communist leaders were indicted for their roles in the persecution of Falun Gong by the Spanish National Court.

Lamadrid has issued arrest warrants for former leader of the Chinese Communist Party Jiang Zemin, who in July 1999 began the campaign to “eradicate Falun Gong,” and Luo Gan, former head of the 610 Office, an extra-constitutional agency that carries out the persecution.

Over 3000 are confirmed tortured to death, according to Falun Gong sources, and the persecution against the group is commonly cited as among the most severe human rights abuses in China.

“This is the true reality of the creation of a Chinese Gestapo with the objective of exterminating thousands of innocent people [including women, the elderly, and children] under the control, direction, supervision, and coordination of Luo Gan, the accused … .” Judge Lamadrid wrote of the 610 Office in his decision.

As in the case of the Spanish National Court’s decision, if the officials travel to a country that has an extradition treaty with Argentina, both officials may be detained, transferred to Argentina, and brought before the court.

From the evidence gathered in four years of investigation, Judge Araoz de Lamadrid expounded in his decision that “the strategy of genocide that has been designed encompassed all range of actions with a total contempt for life and human dignity. The end devised—the eradication of Falun Gong—justified all utilized means. In this way, torment, torture, disappearances, deaths, brainwashing, psychological torture, were the currency of the persecution of its practitioners.”

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a traditional Chinese spiritual discipline that emerged in the early nineties in China. After seven years of rapid growth and popularity it was banned and persecuted by the Communist Party, which does not allow independent social groups outside its control.

- The Epochtimes

Visiting China Official Facing Genocide Charges in Taiwan


NTDTV, Dec. 17, 2009-

A member of the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee is being sued for genocide in Taiwan.

Xu Guangchun, the former Provincial Party Secretary of Henan province, arrived in Taiwan on Monday. He was there to foster cultural and economic exchange between Taiwan and the Mainland. But just a day after he arrived, Xu was personally handed a court complaint by the Taiwan Falun Dafa Association.

Spokesman of the Association, Chang Ching-hsi, says Xu was heavily involved in devising the persecution of Falun Gong adherents by the Chinese communist regime. In 2004, Xu was the head of China’s State Administration of Radio Film and Television when propaganda was produced to incite hatred towards Falun Gong.

Falun Gong, or Falun Dafa, is a mind and body spiritual practice with teachings based on truth, compassion and tolerance. But the Chinese Communist Party has been brutally persecuting adherents since 1999.

[Chang Ching-hsi, Spokesperson of the Taiwan Falun Dafa Association]:
“In the decade-long persecution of Falun Gong by the Chinese Communist Party, Xu Guangchun has participated in nearly all of the major events, including the staged self immolation incident at Tiananmen Square on January 23, 2001. He was the chief of the administration at the time. This is critical evidence showing his smearing of Falun Gong.”

In 2001, five people set themselves on fire in Tiananmen Square. State controlled CCTV widely publicized the incident, claiming the five people were Falun Gong adherents, and used the event to demonize the practice. The footage shown by CCTV has been independently investigated and is widely understood to have been a staged event.

This is not the first time Xu has faced a lawsuit like this. In July 2005, he was sued for torture and genocide while visiting San Francisco in the United States. One of the plaintiffs in that case was a Falun gong adherent who was tortured at a Henan Labor Camp.

- NTDTV

Organ Pillaging and Falun Gong in China (2): Speech by David Kilgour


By Hon. David Kilgour, J.D., Subcommittee on Human Rights, European Parliament- Brussels, Via MWC News, Dec. 2, 2009 - (cont’d)

<< previous

Our conclusion is that many of the disappeared were killed for their organs, which were sold to transplant tourists.  It would take too much time to set out how we came to that conclusion.  We invite you to read our report, which is on the internet (accessible at http://www.david-kilgour.com), or our book. Briefly, three of the dozens of evidentiary trails we followed which led to our conclusion are these:

1) Only Falun Gong practitioners in work camps and prisons are systematically blood tested and physically examined. This testing cannot be motivated by concerns over the health of practitioners, because they are also systematically tortured.  Testing is necessary for organ transplants because of the need for blood type compatibility between the organ source and the recipient. Crystal Chen, for example, during three years in a camp was medically tested several times, including two blood tests.

2) Traditional sources of transplants-prisoners sentenced to death and then executed, voluntary donors, the brain dead/cardiac alive-come nowhere near to explaining the total number of transplants in China. There is no organized system of organ donations. There is a cultural aversion to organ donation. There is no national organ matching or distribution system in China.

The only significant source in China of organs for transplants before the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners began was prisoners sentenced to death and then executed.  The volume of organ transplants in China went up dramatically shortly after the banning of the practice of Falun Gong. Yet, the numbers of those sentenced to death and then executed did not increase.

We estimate that 41,500 organs transplanted over the period of persecution up to 2005 came from Falun Gong practitioners. How we reached this conclusion is explained on page 96 of our book.

3) We had callers phoning hospitals throughout China posing as family members of persons who needed organ transplants. In a wide variety of locations, those who were called asserted that Falun Gong practitioners (known to be healthy because of their exercise regime) were the source of the organs.

Since our report came out, laws and practices in China have changed. A law on transplants in May 2007 required that transplants be performed only in registered hospitals. The Ministry of Health announced that from June 26, 2007 Chinese patients would be given priority access to organ transplants over foreigners.  The announcement also banned all medical institutions from transplanting organs into foreign transplant tourists. The government announced in August 2009 that it was launching an organ donation system as a pilot project.

With these changes, however, the crime against humanity continues. The recipients have changed from foreign to local, but the sources remain substantially the same. The government denies that organs for transplants are being sourced from prisoners who are Falun Gong practitioners. Yet, it accepts that organs for transplants are being sourced from prisoners. The only debate we have with the Government is which group of prisoners is the source of organs.

“Non consenting parties”

Sourcing of organs from prisoners is done without consent.  Deputy Health Minister Huang Joyful at a conference of surgeons in Guangzhou in November 2006 said in a speech, “too often organs come from non consenting parties”. The government of China accepts that sourcing of organs from prisoners is wrong. Huang at the time of the announcement of an organ donor pilot project stated that executed prisoners “are definitely not a proper source for organ transplants”.  This principle, that prisoners are not an acceptable source for organs, is followed by the Transplantation Society and the World Medical Association.

So what is the rule of law world going to do about the Chinese party-state’s abuse of global transplant ethics?  Our report and book have a long list of recommendations.  Given the shortness of time, I mention here only two.

One possibility is extraterritorial legislation.  The 2007 policy giving priority to Chinese patients has cut down on transplant tourism to China, but such legislation would be a useful statement of universal principle. The sorts of transplants in which the Chinese medical system engages are illegal everywhere else in the world. But it is not illegal for a foreigner from any country to go to China, obtain a transplant which would be illegal at home, and then return home.  Foreign transplant legislation everywhere is territorial; it has no extraterritorial reach. Many other laws are global in their sweep. For instance, child sex tourists can be prosecuted not just in the country where they abuse children, but often at home as well. This sort of legislation does not exist for transplant tourists who pay for organ transplants without bothering to determine whether the organ donor has consented.

A second recommendation is that any person known to be involved in trafficking in the organs of prisoners in China should be barred entry by all foreign countries.

Conclusion

The attempted crushing of Falun Gong, Buddhist, Christian, Muslim and other independent faith groups, human rights lawyers and other civil society and democracy communities in recent years indicates that China’s party-state must still be engaged with great caution despite the severe ongoing world economic problems. If it stops the systematic and gross abuses of human rights and takes major steps to indicate that it wishes to treat its trade partners in a mutually-beneficial way, the new century will bring harmony for China, its trading partners and neighbours. Its people have the numbers, perseverance, self-discipline, intelligence and other qualities to help make this new century better and more peaceful for the entire human family. (END)

- By Hon. David Kilgour, J.D., Subcommittee on Human Rights, European Parliament- Brussels. Published via MWC News

Organ Pillaging and Falun Gong in China (1): Speech by David Kilgour


By Hon. David Kilgour, J.D., Subcommittee on Human Rights, European Parliament- Brussels, Via MWC News, Dec. 2, 2009 -

Thank you for the opportunity to speak about organ pillaging from Falun Gong practitioners in China as a new crime against humanity.

The earlier witness, Gao Wenqian from Human Rights In China (HRIC) in New York, told us in part that the overall human rights situation in China today is worsening. The experiences of another Gao (no relative), Gao Zhisheng, illustrates this phenomenon well.

In 2004, Gao Zhisheng, then one of China’s top lawyers and since nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, defended a Falun Gong practitioner who had been sent to a labour camp without any form of hearing. Gao learned that the court refused to hear the case because of “orders from above”, so he courageously wrote to the National People’s Congress and later sent three letters to the top leadership in Beijing. One of them referred to the “indescribable violence done to kind (Falun Gong) practitioners”.

Gao’s permit to practise law was subsequently removed and his office was closed by the government. His wife and daughter were harassed by police. He was imprisoned and tortured during a horrific five-week period and is now being “held incommunicado at an unknown location”, according to Amnesty International.

Forced Labour Camps

In doing our final report on organ pillaging from Falun Gong, David Matas and I visited about a dozen countries to interview practitioners sent to forced labour camps since 1999, who managed later to leave the camps and the country itself. They told us of working in appalling conditions for up to sixteen hours daily with no pay, little food, being cramped together on the floor for sleeping, and being tortured. They made export products, ranging from garments to chopsticks to Christmas decorations at times as subcontractors to multinational companies.

The camps, which were created in the Mao era and modeled closely on those in Stalin’s Russia and Hitler’s Third Reich, allow the party to send anyone to them for up to four years with neither any form of hearing nor appeal. One estimate of the number of the camps across China as of 2005 was 340, having a capacity of about 300,000 inmates. In 2007, a US government report estimated that at least half of the inmates in the camps were Falun Gong. It is the combination of totalitarian governance and ‘anything is permitted’ economics that allows such inhuman practices to persist.

Take Falun Gong practitioner Crystal Chen, a former assistant to the president of a leading import export corporation in Guangzhou and an amateur actor, for example, who spent three years in a camp. She experienced beatings, being shackled and stretched, and prolonged sleep deprivation. In a detention centre, she was thrown on the floor of her cell and four large men held her down. A water bottle was cut in half to be used as a funnel. A one-pound bag of salt was poured inside the bottle, a small amount of water added. Guards shoved the opening of the bottle against Chen’s teeth and tried to pry her mouth open with a dirty toothbrush.

She resisted, knowing the salt could kill her. Chen: “The salt went everywhere into my mouth and up my nose… I vomited salt and blood for days and could not eat. My gums were full of blood, I could hardly talk. They still handcuffed me.” A male practitioner, university teacher Gao Xian in, died after being subjected to the same salt torture in the same detention centre.

Chen, now a refugee living outside China, stresses that Falun Gong practitioners, while understandably unsympathetic towards the Party, seek no role in Chinese politics: “only to stop the persecution which has continued for more than ten years… I love China. I’m proud of thousands of years of Chinese civilization and proud of being Chinese… I look forward to the renaissance of genuine Chinese values and dignity, including truthfulness, compassion and tolerance.”

Killing of Falun Gong practitioners for their organs

David Matas and I came to the dismaying conclusion that Falun Gong practitioners in China have been and are being killed for their organs on a large scale. We wrote a report that came to this conclusion, which came out in July 2006. There was a second version in 2007. A third in book form was published last month as Bloody Harvest.

Falun Gong is essentially a traditional Chinese spiritual discipline, consisting of principles for living, meditation and exercises which began in China in 1992.  Initially the government encouraged the practice as beneficial for health. By 1999, it had grown so popular that the Party became afraid that its own ideological and numerical supremacy were being threatened. The numbers of persons practising Falun Gong across China had grown from virtually none in 1992, according to a government estimate, to 70-100 million. The practice was accordingly banned.

Practitioners were asked to recant. Those who refused and continued the practice and those who protested the banning were arrested.  If they recanted after arrest, they were released.  If they did not, they were tortured.  If they recanted after torture, they were then released.  If they did not recant after torture, they disappeared into the Chinese detention and forced labor system. (To be cont’d……)

China’s ex-president sought in Spanish probe: lawyer


The Expatica, Nov. 20, 2009 -

Madrid – A Spanish judge wants to question former Chinese president Jiang Zemin and four other Chinese Communist Party officials over allegations of torture and genocide against the Falun Gong, a lawyer for the spiritual movement said Thursday.

Judge Ismael Moreno of the National Court made the decision after concluding a preliminary inquiry, Falun Gong lawyer Carlos Iglesias said.

The Supreme Court in 2006 ordered Moreno to probe a complaint for genocide filed two years earlier by the Falun Gong and which had initially been rejected.

Iglesias said the Chinese officials will receive a letter requesting information about their alleged involvement in the persecution of the Falun Gong.

If they fail to reply within six weeks, the judge could issue arrest warrants against them, Iglesias said.

Chinese authorities banned Falun Gong, whose Buddhist-inspired teachings focus on exercises and which claims 70 million followers in China, in 1999. Beijing has since branded Falun Gong an “evil cult” and sometimes brutally suppressed its practitioners.

The Spanish case was accepted under the principle of “universal jurisdiction” which Spain has observed since 2005 and which allows judges to open probes into genocide and human rights abuses wherever they occur.

But it has also caused diplomatic headaches for the government, and Spain’s parliament voted in June to limit its scope.

In May, a Spanish judge also issued rogatory letters to China to request information on eight leaders targetted by a suit by a Tibetan rights groups accusing them of repression in Tibet.

- AFP / Expatica

China’s former Communist head Jiang Zemin Indicted for Torture and Genocide of Falun Gong


NTDTV, 2009-11-20 -

Five high-ranking Chinese Communist Party Officials have been indicted in a Spanish court for crimes of torture and genocide against Falun Gong practitioners.

Among them is former head of the Communist Party, Jiang Zemin. He’s responsible for launching the brutal campaign in 1999 to “eradicate” the Falun Gong meditation practice.

The court decision means Jiang and the others have 4 to 6 weeks to reply to the judge’s request for their testimony. Otherwise they could face extradition. They could be arrested if they travel to any of the dozens of countries that have extradition treaties with Spain, including the United States. Theoretically they would then be sent to Spain, where they would stand trial and could face up to 20 years in prison.

Aside from Jiang Zemin, the four other indicted officials are:

- Luo Gan who lead the “610 Office,” a nationwide secret police task force;
- Bo Xilai, current Party Secretary for Chongqing and former Minister of Commerce;
- Jia Qinglin, the fourth-highest member of the Party hierarchy; and
- Wu Guanzheng, head of an internal Party disciplinary committee.

On November 13th, Spanish National Court Judge Ismael Moreno notified attorney Carlos Iglesias of the Human Rights Law Foundation that the court had granted a petition to indict the defendants.

[Carlos Iglesias, Attorney, Human Rights Law Foundation]:

“This decision of the Spanish Judge, I sincerely think will open the door for other countries around the world to also start to investigate these crimes—and for justice to be served in the genocide that the Chinese Communist Party is committing against Falun Gong.”

Iglesias says evidence of the genocide is abundant and has been accepted by the judge. That includes oral testimonies of seven Chinese victims of the persecution as well as reports by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the U.N. Human Rights Commission.

[Carlos Iglesias, Attorney, Human Rights Law Foundation]:

“The Spanish court has made a historic step forward to stop and bring to justice those responsible of those terrible crimes that the Chinese Communist Party is committing against millions of Falun Gong practitioners. The [five] accused—Jiang Zemin, Luo Gan, Bo Xilai, Jia Qinglin, Wu Guanzheng—and all the other CCP officials who are responsible for the persecution, they should be brought to justice, and before history, appear before the court, and put in jail—for being directly responsible for the millions of Falun Gong practitioners that have been persecuted for their beliefs of simply trying to be good people.”

- NTDTV

China Officials Indicted for Genocide and Torture by Spanish Court


By John Nania, Epoch Times Staff, Nov 18, 2009 -

Five high-ranking Chinese officials have been indicted in Spain for genocide and torture of Falun Gong practitioners.

As reported by The Epoch Times online and in Monday’s print edition, the five officials of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) include Jiang Zemin, the former top man in the Party, and Luo Gan, head of the notorious 610 Office, a nationwide secret police task force that has led the violent campaign against Falun Gong.

Additional details were announced Wednesday in a press release by the Falun Dafa Information Center, on behalf of the Human Rights Law Foundation (HRLF), which is heading the legal effort in Spain. Carlos Iglesias is the HRLF attorney on the case in Spain.

“When one carries out the crime of genocide or torture, it is a crime against the international community as a whole and not only against Chinese citizens,” Iglesias said.

For committing the crime of genocide, the defendants face imprisonment for up to 20 years and may be economically liable to the victims for damages. Based on the magnitude of the crimes committed by the defendants, they are likely to face the maximum 20-year penalty for their crimes.

According to the press release, the defendants have 4-6 weeks to reply and could subsequently face extradition if they travel to a country that has an extradition treaty with Spain. The decision was taken under the legal principle of universal jurisdiction, which allows domestic courts to hear cases of genocide and crimes against humanity regardless of where they occur.

Falun Gong is a traditional Chinese spiritual discipline that was practiced by 100 million people in China before it was banned in July 1999 by the CCP. It was initially supported by the CCP as promoting health and social harmony, but was suddenly declared illegal and subsequently violently persecuted, largely on the decision of Jiang Zemin, one of the defendants in the case in Spain.

The court also took a historic step in being the first to legally recognize the persecution against Falun Gong as amounting to genocide.

- The Epoch Times

Spanish Court Indicts 5 Top Communist Party Officials for Torture, Genocide of Falun Gong


Falun Dafa Information Center, 18 Nov 2009 -

NEW YORK – In an unprecedented decision, a Spanish judge has indicted five high-ranking Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials for their role in crimes of torture and genocide committed against Falun Gong practitioners. Among the defendants is former CCP head Jiang Zemin, widely acknowledged as the chief instigator of the campaign to “eradicate” the spiritual practice.

Following a two-year investigation, Spanish National Court Judge Ismael Moreno last week notified attorney Carlos Iglesias of the Human Rights Law Foundation (HRLF) that the court had granted a petition to indict the defendants on charges of torture and genocide. According to the notice, for committing the crime of genocide, the defendants face imprisonment for up to 20 years and may be economically liable to the victims for damages.

The Judge’s notification also stated that the court had granted a petition to send rogatory letters (letter of request) to the five defendants in China with questions relating to each individual’s involvement in the persecution of Falun Gong. The decisions followed a series of submissions to the court by Iglesias and other HRLF staff.

The defendants have 4-6 weeks to reply and could subsequently face extradition if they travel to a country that has an extradition treaty with Spain. The decision was taken under the legal principle of universal jurisdiction, which allows domestic courts to hear cases of genocide and crimes against humanity regardless of where they occur.

“This historic decision by a Spanish judge means that Chinese Communist Party leaders responsible for brutal crimes are now one step closer to being brought to justice,” said Iglesias. “When one carries out the crime of genocide or torture, it is a crime against the international community as a whole and not only against Chinese citizens. Spain is emerging as a defender of human rights and universal justice.”

Among the accused are former CCP leader Jiang Zemin, widely acknowledged as the primary instigator of the campaign launched in 1999 to “eradicate” Falun Gong. Also facing charges is Luo Gan, who oversaw the 610 Office, a nationwide secret police task force that has led the violent campaign. Chinese lawyers have compared the 6-10 Office to Nazi Germany’s Gestapo in its brutality and extra-legal authority.

The other three accused are Bo Xilai, current Party Secretary for Chongqing and former Minister of Commerce; Jia Qinglin, the fourth-highest member of the Party hierarchy; and Wu Guanzheng, head of an internal Party disciplinary committee. The charges against them are based on their proactive advancement of the persecution against Falun Gong when they served as top officials in Liaoning, Beijing, and Shandong respectively. In a Pulitzer prize-winning article, The Wall Street Journal’s Ian Johnson describes how Wu imposed fines on his subordinates if they did not sufficiently crackdown on Falun Gong, leading officials to torture local residents, in some cases, to death. (news)

Other evidence considered by the judge during his investigation included written testimonies from fifteen Falun Gong practitioners and oral testimonies from seven practitioners, including torture victims and relatives of individuals who had been killed in Chinese custody. The judge also relied on reports by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the U.N. Human Rights Commission to reach his decision, HRLF attorney Iglesias said.

To arrange for an interview with attorney Iglesias or one of the witnesses, please contact the Falun Dafa Information Center or the Human Rights Law Foundation.

- Falun Dafa Information Center

China’s Labor Camp Director Sued for Torture During New York Visit


By Charlotte Cuthbertson, Epoch Times Staff, Oct 24, 2009 -

Shi Honghui, center, was served court papers after being sued by a group of Falun Gong practitioners for torture and genocide

NEW YORK—In a bittersweet moment for Crystal Chen, the man who signed away five years of her life to a forced labor camp was served with a lawsuit in Manhattan on Oct. 22.

Shi Honghui, director of forced labor camps in China’s Guangdong province, is responsible for torture, genocide, and other gross human rights violations, according to the complaint. He was approached by a professional process server while visiting Pier 16 in lower Manhattan.

Upon being served, Shi threw the documents to the ground. He later fled the scene in a chartered bus, leaving other members of his party stranded at the pier, according to Wang Zhiyuan, spokesperson for the World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong and witness to the scene.

Wang was part of the team that tracked Shi to New York and ensured the papers were served.

“All those criminals who actively participate in the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners have been documented, and in the end they will find it hard to escape the dragnet of the law,” Wang said.

Beginning in August 2000, Chen was sent without trial twice to Chatou Women’s “Re-education Through Labor” Camp in Guangdong’s capital city of Guangzhou for her belief in Falun Gong, where she spent a total of over five years. Among the documents committing her to the camp were ones signed personally by Shi, according to the Falun Dafa Information Center.

For 36-year-old Chen, a Queens resident since May and United Nations refugee, the lawsuit is significant, but cold comfort when she knows countless other Falun Gong practitioners are still being detained and tortured in Guangdong.

“It was an opportunistic moment,” she said of Shi being served. “It’s a good chance for him to know that the international community will hold him responsible for all the bad things he has done.”

Her own experience of severe beatings, forced-feeding, and prolonged sleep deprivation included one incident that remains stark in her memory.

Room 212 in the Tianhe District Detention Center, Guangzhou City, China, was the scene of Chen’s first experience of torture. She was thrown on the floor of her cell and four large males from China’s notorious 610 Office held her limbs down.

A water bottle was cut in half to be used as a funnel. A one-pound bag of salt was poured inside the bottle, a small amount of water added. Chen’s eyes were covered with a dirty towel. Guards shoved the opening of the bottle against Chen’s teeth and tried to pry her mouth open with a used toothbrush. She was obstinate—she knew the salt could kill her.

“The salt went everywhere into my mouth and up my nose,” Chen said in a previous interview. “I vomited salt and blood for the following days and could not eat. My gums were full of blood, I could hardly talk. They still handcuffed me.”

Six days after her release from this detention center, a male practitioner, Gao Xianmin, died after being subjected to the same high-density salt torture……. (more details from The Epochtimes)

Unsolved- Organ Harvesting in China: Interview with UN Special Rapporteur on Torture


By Charlotte Cuthbertson, Epoch Times Staff,  Aug 5, 2009 -

The U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture, Dr. Manfred Nowak (Via The Epochtimes)

The U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture, Dr. Manfred Nowak (Via The Epochtimes)

No straight answers have been produced by the Chinese regime over the allegations of state-sanctioned organ harvesting of Falun Gong practitioners, says Manfred Nowak, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture.

“The Chinese government has yet to come clean and be transparent,” said Nowak in an interview with The Epoch Times. “It remains to be seen how it could be possible that organ transplant surgeries in Chinese hospitals have risen massively since 1999, while there are never that many voluntary donors available.”

The Chinese Communist Party has denied the allegations for three years despite several compelling investigative reports and several probes by the United Nations. Falun Gong is a spiritual practice based on truth, compassion, tolerance, and includes five sets of meditative exercises. In July 1999, the communist regime in China began persecuting people who practice it.

Investigative Reports

International human rights lawyer David Matas, and former crown prosecutor and member of parliament, David Kilgour, published their first report in July 2006, following up with a second in January 2007.

Their report, “Bloody Harvest: Revised Report Into Allegations of Organ Harvesting of Falun Gong Practitioners in China,” concludes: “We believe that there has been and continues today to be large-scale organ seizures from unwilling Falun Gong practitioners … The very horror made us reel back in disbelief.”

Major findings include 41,500 organs in transplants unaccounted for between 2001 and 2005. Transplants increased in parallel with the persecution of Falun Gong. In 2001 the amount of liver transplants in China numbered seven. By 2005 it had reached 2,168 for one hospital. The Chinese military is heavily involved in the transplant system in China, and the regime has admitted that the vast majority of organs for transplant come from executed prisoners.

“The explanation that most of these organs come from death row inmates is inconclusive,” said Nowak. “If so, the number of executed felons must then be much higher as so far assumed. I have asked the Chinese government to provide clarity and asked for precise data.”

The accusations remain, said Nowak. “They were denied, but the Chinese government has not invalidated them, but on the other hand they haven´t been proven either. This makes for a difficult dilemma—one that only be resolved if China is willing to cooperate. And that is what is lacking.”

United Nations Requests Ignored

Nowak has submitted two reports to the U.N. Human Rights Council formally requesting the Chinese regime respond to the allegations. The report states, in part, that, “The [Falun Gong] practitioners were given injections to induce heart failure, and therefore were killed in the course of the organ harvesting operations or immediately thereafter.”

“Nothing seems to have changed for the better,” said Nowak. “We lack exact statistics. I cannot say if the situation has changed since I left China. But I have no reason to assume anything has turned for the better, because I have not had any such hints. The majority of the inmates in these [forced labor] camps were Falun Gong members. And that is so frightening, because none of these people were ever given the benefit of a trial. They were never charged.”

“Bloody Harvest” outlines extraordinarily short wait times for organs in China—one to two weeks for a liver compared with 32.5 months in Canada (median wait for 2003) as a further incriminating factor. Kilgour and Matas also present self-accusatory material from Chinese transplant centre Web sites that advertise the immediate availability of large numbers of organs from living donors. Organ price lists were available on Chinese hospital Web sites.

The Kilgour-Matas report includes evidence from a hospital Web site (now removed), that claims, from “January 2005 to now, we have done 647 liver transplants—12 of them done this week. The average waiting time is two weeks.”

A chart also removed about the same time indicates that in 1998 the hospital completed only nine liver transplants—by 2005 it had completed fully 2248.

No Trials, Forced Labor Camps

In a 2005 trip to China that took Nowak 10 years of requests to the regime, he discovered that two-thirds of the torture cases reported in labor camps were Falun Gong practitioners.

Falun Gong practitioners are put into forced labor camps, said Nowak. “In the same way the officials deal with prostitutes or with those that exhibit ‘other socially damaging behavior.’ One can say that a relatively big part of the inmates in these camps are Falun Gong persons. It definitely is one of the largest groups.”

Nowak said the number of practitioners in China is huge. “In spite of the persecution [it] has not diminished, but increased,” he said.

“Genocide has a specific background—ethnic, racist, or religious discrimination; in this case it could be religious discrimination. “[What the regime is doing] amounts to a systematic repression of a specific group of people for religious/political reasons, although the Chinese leadership has always denied this to be a religious movement.”…… (more details from The Epochtimes)