Canada: Falun Gong Practitioners Hold Hunger Strike in Front of Chinese Embassy, Call for Charles Li's Immediate and Unconditional Release (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net June 2, 2003) Falun Gong practitioners from Ottawa and Montreal began continuous appeals on behalf of Dr. Charles Li at the Chinese Embassy on the afternoon of May 21. On Sunday, June 1, the hunger strike Dr. Li initiated to protest the severe violation of his human rights in China entered its fourth day. The same day, practitioners from these two areas began a hunger strike in front of the Chinese Embassy from 9am to 5pm to support Dr. Li and call for his immediate and unconditional release.
It was reported that an official of the State Department verified to a Voice of America reporter that Charles Li, who had been sentenced to three years in prison, had started a hunger strike on May 27, 2003 in Nanjing Prison.
Dr. Li was arrested upon his arrival at Guangzhou Airport from the US on January 22. The Chinese government accused him of allegedly "preparing" to tap into Chinese state-run T.V. and broadcast programs exposing the persecution of Falun Gong in China. After being ushered through a "show trial" in March, Charles was sentenced to 3 years in Nanjing Prison. Here, Dr. Li wrote a 96 page document to the U.S. Consulate in Shanghai. According to a U.S. consulate official, however, Nanjing Prison officials removed 8 pages from the document that contained specific information regarding Dr. Li's request to become a plaintiff in the genocide lawsuit against former Chinese leader, Jiang Zemin, which was filed in U.S. District Court in October 2002.
Presently, Charles Li's situation is very urgent. Officials at the Nanjing Prison where Dr. Li is being held have denied him all contact with his fiancée, Ms. Yeong-ching Foo. Chinese officials have also refused to allow U.S. consulate representatives to visit him, using the severe spread of SARS in the region where the Nanjing Prison is located as an excuse.
According to the most recent annual report of United Nations Human Rights Commission, many Falun Gong practitioners have died while on hunger strikes in China's forced labor camps and prisons due to forced feedings and brutal beatings.
During Saturday's gathering, Ottawa practitioners read several articles in both English and Chinese on the global lawsuit against Jiang Zemin, including Bring Jiang Zemin to Justice In the Court of Morality, In the Court of Conscience, and In Courts of Law All Over the World and Jiang Zemin Accused of Eight Crimes in Deceiving the World and Harming Mankind
On Sunday, a practitioner participating in the hunger strike said during an interview, "Compared to what fellow practitioners in China are experiencing, my suffering is nothing. The persecution Charles Li has experienced has showed how fearful the instigator who single-handedly started this persecution four years ago is before the righteous. Bringing Jiang to Justice, exposing the evil, and upholding justice will allow more people to know the truth about Falun Gong."