While reporting on the fire that erupted on Tiananmen Square earlier today and the self-immolations that have occurred there in recent years, several Western media outlets stationed in Beijing wrongfully stated as fact that Falun Gong practitioners had self-immolated on Tiananmen Square in January, 2001.
Ten years ago this Sunday, a deadly piece of stagecraft unfolded on Tiananmen Square in Beijing. At the behest of the Communist Party, five people set themselves on fire with cameras rolling.
On the eve of Chinese leader Hu Jintao’s arrival in the United States for a state visit, the Falun Dafa Information Center urges the media, human rights groups, the American public, and especially, U.S. officials meeting with the delegation, to keep the following ten facts about China at the forefront of their minds.
The Falun Dafa Information Center applauds Google’s initiative to challenge the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) over its Internet censorship and encourages other companies, governments, and individuals to do the same. The Center also questions some media references that this move is “risky” or “surprising,” as the human cost of Internet censorship in China could not be any clearer.
1. Within a 50-mile radius of central Beijing, hundreds of innocent Falun Gong practitioners are being held and tortured in detention centers, forced labor camps, and prison camps. 2. During Obama’s 3-day trip, an estimated 72 Falun Gong practitioners will be abducted by security forces, 15 will be sent to a forced labor or prison camp for the next 1 to 18 years, and at least one will likely be tortured to death. 3. Several Communist Party officials Obama may meet are being investigated for egregious human rights violations, including torture and genocide. 4. Tiananmen Square, a likely destination during Obama’s sightseeing tour, has been the scene of countless Chinese citizens being pummeled, beaten, and shoved into police vans by security forces for peacefully protesting against the persecution of Falun Gong. Many died after being detained there. 5. At least 97 Falun Gong practitioners from Beijing and 414 from the surrounding Hebei province have been killed due to persecution over the past decade. 6. In 1999, roughly 1 out of every 15 Chinese practiced Falun Gong. Thus, many of the people President Obama meets or sees walking down the street have a friend, relative, or colleague who has been victimized by the last decade of persecution. 7. Whatever Obama hears—or doesn’t hear—from Party officials about Falun Gong will be profoundly shaped by propaganda and censorship. 8. Despite Party leaders rhetorical commitment to the “rule of law,” judges, prosecutors, and security agents are routinely manipulated by Party officials into carrying out illegal abductions, detentions, “re-education,” torture, and murder. 9. Public interest lawyers who have represented Falun Gong practitioners have been harassed, disbarred, and tortured. 10. In Beijing and across China, Falun Gong practitioners and their supporters are engaging in a tireless grassroots effort to stop the violence.
NEW YORK -- Since the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) first launched its campaign in 1999 to "eradicate Falun Gong," it has often taken incidents of unrest or violence in China and through state-run media, framed them on Falun Gong. The violent protests in Shishou in June are a clear example where local citizens protested over an injustice having nothing to do with Falun Gong, while the state-run media aimed to portray it as Falun Gong-incited unrest. Since the Olympics last year, CCP officials have used this tactic with greater frequency.
A former university librarian in Shanghai sits at her home computer. Using proxy servers, Ms. Liu Jin breaks through China’s vast “Great Firewall” and accesses a Falun Gong-related website. She downloads accounts of rights abuses against fellow adherents and begins printing. Soon, the stack of homemade, underground leaflets finds its way into the hands and mailboxes of neighbors, local shopkeepers, and former colleagues. A “materials production site,” one of tens of thousands across China, is born, bringing into people’s hands basic facts of injustice that the Communist Party has worked tirelessly to censor.
Based on recent Chinese Communist Party tactics, the Falun Dafa Information Center expressed concern today that the Party may attempt to stage an incident, perhaps even one involving violence, and then label the actors as Falun Gong practitioners. The Center urged media workers in Beijing to question and thoroughly investigate any Chinese Communist Party (CCP) characterizations of Falun Gong, especially in light of these concerns.
1. China’s Olympic Committee President was found liable for torture 2. To prepare for the Olympics, Chinese security ordered a “strike hard” against Falun Gong. 3. Falun Gong practitioners are being killed in custody faster and more frequently than before. 4. Thousands of Falun Gong practitioners around China have been arrested “in preparation” for the games. 5. Falun Gong practitioners are officially excluded from the Games because of religious belief, in clear violation of the Olympic Charter. 6. Falun Gong has never taken a position on an Olympic boycott. 7. A “clean up” of districts hosting Olympic venues has included the arrest of local residents who practice Falun Gong. 8. Despite ostensibly freer regulations for foreign journalists, Falun Gong remains taboo. 9. Hundreds of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners will experience the Olympics from inside labor camps, where they are often tortured. 10. Most Chinese are unaware of any of the above because independent information about Falun Gong remains blocked inside China.
Several human rights-related organizations in the U.S. have filed a civil complaint against China Central Television (CCTV) for programming that aids and abets illegal arrest, prolonged detention, torture, and brainwashing of Falun Gong practitioners.