Over 1,000 Falun Gong Practitioners Gather in Chicago For Peaceful Protest Against Jiang's Brutality (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) October 22, 2002, U.S. Central Time 11:30 a.m. Comprehensive News Report: This morning, China's head of state, Jiang, arrived at Chicago O'Hare Airport and more than 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners, wearing blue or yellow T shirts, stood along the way from the airport to the hotel. They held banners that read, "Falun Dafa is good," "Stop the persecution," "Truth, Compassion, Tolerance."
Jiang was the original schemer who began and escalated the persecution against Falun Gong. Beginning on July 20th, 1999, he used the policy "ruin their reputation, destroy them financially and annihilate them physically." During the past three years, hundreds of thousands of practitioners' homes were illegally ransacked; the practitioners were illegally detained, sent to forced labor camps or jails where they were brutally tortured; some female practitioners were raped; thousands of practitioners were sent into mental institutions. Up until the end of October 2001, according to internal data from the Chinese government, more than 1,600 practitioners were tortured to death in Mainland China. Up until October 2002, 503 torture deaths were reported abroad.
Falun Gong,also called Falun Dafa, is a cultivation way of the Buddha School based on the principles of Truth, Compassion, Tolerance. It teaches people to be virtuous and helps them to be physically and mentally healthy. Ever since its public introduction back in May of 1992, millions of people around the world have embraced this system. In 1999, out of fear and feeling threatened, Jiang began the public persecution of Dafa, because more people were practicing this peaceful, spiritual system than were members in his Party.
Around Airport and Hotel
Jiang is staying at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. Five to six hundred Falun Gong practitioners held up banners in both Chinese and English that read, "Falun Dafa is good," "Stop the persecution," "Truth, Compassion, Tolerance."
Outside the front door of the Ritz Carlton Hotel, five hundred practitioners sat in groups; they erected their palms and sent forth righteous thoughts; the strains of "Pu Du" music could be heard in the air. Outside the east side door of the hotel, about two hundred practitioners sat peacefully in a solemn, yet harmonious manner. Inside the park, outside the hotel's back door to the north, Dafa banners that hung on the trees shone brilliantly in the sunlight. Dozens of practitioners sat on the ground and their faces were peaceful and harmonious. Outside a side door, the police arranged the "welcoming group" brought by Chinese consulate envoys. Behind them were the Tibetan and Taiwanese groups, both of whom were shouting and protesting.
A Journalist interviewed Falun Gong practitioner Mr. Zhou who is the voluntary group coordinator. Mr. Zhou said, "We are not against the government nor against U.S. - China relations. But we firmly protest Mr. Jiang's persecution of Falun Gong."
Before Jiang's car convoy arrived at the hotel, the practitioners sat quietly amidst Dafa music, performed the meditation exercise and sent forth righteous thoughts. Many students in the "welcoming group" were very surprised to see quite a few Westerners in the Falun Gong group.
Jiang's car convoy arrived at the Ritz Carlton Hotel a little after 11:00 a.m. Falun Gong practitioners unfurled banners showing blue words on yellow background that read, "Falun Dafa is good" facing of the line of cars. They told the journalist, "Jiang is sitting in the last row of the first car. Both hands rested on his protruding stomach and he has an upset look on his face."
Practitioners who had gathered in Houston held a press conference outside City Hall and demonstrated the Falun Gong exercises. According to an overseas media report, Jiang will visit Chicago, Illinois, Houston and Crawford, Texas from October 22, 2002 to October 25, 2002. Falun Gong practitioners will hold a series of peaceful protest activities aimed at Jiang's visits.
"Jiang Sold His Country"
After Jiang entered the hotel through the back door, a box-shaped truck appeared near the hotel, which silenced the "welcome group." The front of the truck displayed these words, "Jiang sold the country." On all four sides of the truck, large yellow banners that read, "Jiang, return my motherland! Traitor of the people! Criminal of history!" "344 square hectares of Chinese soil officially given to Russia!" "Criminal of history, you can't escape punishment!"
According to a Chicago resident, this truck has been driven around Chinatown since October 19.