[Minghui Net, March 19, 2001] On the morning of March 19, over 1000 Falun Gong practitioners from more than 20 countries all over the world held a large-scale group exercise practice in front of the United Nations in Geneva.

At the same time, practitioners successfully held a press conference near the United Nations.

The media attending the press conference included several local newspapers, a Swiss Television Station, and over ten media organizations from Japan and Germany.

At the beginning of the press conference, Falun Gong spokesperson Mr. Erping Zhang read a media announcement and gave a brief update on the ongoing persecution of Falun Gong in China. He pointed out that the persecution of Falun Gong has been extended to the family and relatives of Falun Gong practitioners, other traditional religious groups, and various other groups in society.

The announcement says, "For justice, all Falun Gong practitioners, regardless of gender or age, have chosen to stand up against the evil persecution and make a peaceful appeal." The announcement expressed appreciation for the strong support given to Falun Gong by the United States, Canada, and the European Union. It appealed to the international community for broader support in various aspects to help end the crackdown on Falun Gong in China that has lasted for 19 months.

During the press conference, Professor Qunlun Zhang from Canada and Ms. Cuiying Zhan from Australia spoke of their suffering when they were detained in China. Following that, Mr. Sunny Lu, an expert in psychology and psychiatry who teaches at the University of Cincinnati, disclosed the fact that China abuses mental hospitals and drugs to persecute Falun Gong practitionersto the point of torturing normal practitioners to brain damage or even death in some cases. As an expert, Mr. Sunny Lu pointed out that these actions are completely unethical and immoral. He appeals to international institutions and all concerned organizations to pay close attention to this matter and help stop such brutal persecution at an early date.

After the practitioners' speeches, reporters present at the conference raised some questions related to the persecution of Falun Gong. Falun Gong spokesperson Erping Zhang and local Western practitioners answered their questions.

At the end, a newly released videotape on the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in

China and a six-minute videotape analyzing the suspicious scenes of the self-immolation incident in Tiananmen Square were played.

The entire press conference lasted for one hour and thirty minutes. After the conference was over, reporters interviewed some individual Falun Gong practitioners.

Written by a Minghui reporter on March 19, 2001