(Clearwisdom.net) City Council of Fairfield, Australia held the last regular meeting of this year on the evening of December 10, 2002. Falun Gong practitioners were specially invited to attend the meeting. The mayor was pleased to accept the banner that Falun Gong practitioners presented to the city council. The city council temporarily decided to discuss the issue that the Chinese Consulate refused to return the passport of a Chinese Falun Gong practitioner and unanimously passed a resolution to ask the Australia Foreign Ministry to help getting back the passport. During the meeting, many council members expressed their support of Falun Gong and the motion of setting up a stele on which the words "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" are written.

High Resolution Picture

From left to right: The Mayor, Organizers Ms. Wei Huang and Ms. Jiazhen Huang, and Councilman Watkins

In the scheduled agenda of the council meeting, there was no arrangement to discuss the issue of Falun Gong and it was only arranged for the Falun Gong practitioners to present the banner to the city council to express their appreciation to the long-term support of the city council. Under the suggestion of councilman Mr. Robert Watkins, the mayor temporarily decided to make the banner presentation as the first agenda.

Councilman Watkins introduced Falun Gong first. He said, "Cabramatta was the first Falun Gong practice site in Australia and then Falun Gong spread throughout Australia. Currently, Falun Gong has spread to over 50 countries in the world. But only in China is Falun Gong being persecuted." He said that he attended the activity of "World Needs Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" held on November 30 as a representative of the city mayor, who did not attend due to health reasons. So he asked Falun Gong practitioners to present the banner on which "We support Falun Dafa - Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" is written to the city council.

Mr. Watkins said that he received an anonymous email slandering Falun Gong and asking him to stay away from Falun Gong. He believed it is someone's intentional slander and the person did not dare to sign the message. He deleted the email right away. He said that he would continue to support Falun Gong and the establishment of a stele in Cabramatta on which the words of "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" are written.

Before the end of the meeting, Mr. Watkins proposed to discuss the issue that the Chinese Consulate withheld the passport of a local resident, Chinese citizen Ms. Jiazhen Huang. The mayor and another councilman agreed immediately.

Ms. Huang is from China and has a working visa. She has her own business. She went to the Chinese Consulate to apply for an extension of her passport, but the consulate withheld her passport for no reason. Mr. Watkins said that only because Ms. Huang is a Falun Gong practitioner, China [Jiang's regime] deprived her basic rights of a Chinese citizen.

After discussion, the mayor proposed to write to the minister of the Foreign Ministry and ask him to get back Ms. Huang's passport through diplomatic channel. At the same time, the mayor will write letters to the minister of the immigration department and ask him to issue an Australian passport to Ms. Huang if she cannot get back her Chinese passport. The mayor will also write to Chinese consulate to condemn its actions of ignoring law and human rights.

The resolution was passed unanimously and the meeting ended peacefully. After the meeting, over half of the council members asked more details about Ms. Huang's current situation. Many council members said in humor, "The regular meetings of city council have never been so peaceful as today."