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A Non-Practitioner's Eyewitness Account of the Persecution of Falun Gong Practitioners at the Jiutai Yinmahe Forced Labor Camp

April 22, 2004 |  

(Clearwisom.net) The following is an eyewitness account by a non-practitioner at a forced labor camp in China, describing the persecution of steadfast Falun Gong practitioners.

Because of my wrongdoing, in 2003 I was sent to the Jilin Province Jiutai Yinmahe Forced Labor Camp. When I first arrived, due to the deceptive propaganda I had received while out in the world, I held a biased view and had a bad impression of the Falun Gong practitioners detained at the camp. Later, however, through frequent contact with the practitioners, my viewpoint gradually changed. I found out that they were not like what the TV stations, radio stations, or the newspapers had broadcast. Falun Gong practitioners were actually good people in the society -- they were sincere to others, trustworthy, and did not care for their own gain or loss. I became happy to be acquainted with them. Through their clarifying the truth to me, I realized what was going on with Falun Gong and started to be sympathetic to their suffering. I wanted to provide them as much help as possible. Therefore, below is my own experience, told to let others know what has been happening inside the forced labor camp. I hope that more people may offer understanding and sympathy to those being so unjustly persecuted.

At my arrival at the Education Brigade, I came to know several practitioners including Mr. Li Yutong, Mr. Zhang Yong, Mr. Luo Guang, Mr. Zhang Hongjiu, Mr. Jing Zhixin, and others. They were detained in the Strictly Monitored Group and each was handcuffed to the bed and bore more suffering than all the rest in the other sections of the forced labor camp.

After a period of time, I was transferred to the No. 3 Brigade. Soon after, Mr. Li Yutong, Mr. Zhang Hongjiu, and Mr. Jing Zhixin were sent to this dorm too. Due to their persistence in resisting evil, they continued to be kept in the Strictly Monitored Group. They were watched closely, not allowed to contact other practitioners and not allowed to talk among themselves. Mr. Li Yutong constantly went on hunger strikes. Each time, during his hunger strike, Mr. Li was put into solitary confinement for up to half a month. Thus, Mr. Li Yutong spent most of his time in solitary confinement. Also every time after his hunger strike, the labor camp would force-feed him in order to torture him and make him suffer. Eventually, the forced feeding caused severe damage to his bronchial tubes and esophagus. I remember one day as they released him from the isolation chamber, Mr. Li had already been tortured almost to death. Seeing his condition, the forced labor camp put Mr. Li into a car and claimed that they were taking him out of the camp for medical care. He never came back. Upon questioning about Mr. Li's whereabouts, the camp discipline instructor lied and said, "He was sent out to recuperate at home." At the time I took this as the truth, but later, I heard from a private conversation with the discipline instructor, that Mr. Li Yutong had died from the injuries he received while in the forced labor camp.

From this event you can see that the camp discipline instructor fabricated lies to deceive us, and others who did not know the truth. The camp personnel do dirty things, and then hide it from the public. On the surface they put up pretence of false kindness, all the while they are trying to deceive us. For a while I could not comprehend practitioners' going on hunger strikes. Later, the practitioners explained to me that hunger strikes were taken to resist the persecution and to demand personal freedom as well as unconditional release (because practitioners were innocent). Their human rights and freedom of belief were trampled and deprived, thus the persecution needed stop immediately.

Meanwhile, other practitioners went on hunger strikes. Each of them was also confined in solitary confinement for two weeks.

In the Fall of 2003, the forced labor camp was constructing a shed so they transferred a few masons from the Education Brigade. One mason was a Falun Gong practitioner by the name of Chen Yuguo. Arriving at the No. 3 Brigade, Mr. Chen refused to do the forced labor. Camp discipline instructors, Zhao Jiusheng and Wang Zhaopeng, beat and kicked Mr. Chen, leaving bruises and welts on his face. They then forced him to do the labor and also punished him physically at the construction site. Several detained practitioners went to complain about this incident to the brigade officer but the brigade officer blew it off and took no action. Later, Mr. Chen Yuguo brought it up to Director Guo, demanding a serious investigation of this case of physical abuse. But it ended with no action and the perpetrators remained unpunished and free to commit crimes at will.

Another practitioner, Mr. Jiang Lin, was also detained in the Strictly Monitored Group. After his hunger strike, the camp instructor ordered someone to administer forced feeding but Mr. Jiang refused to cooperate. So the camp instructor told others to handcuff him and then carry him to the force-feeding area. When I saw this situation I felt bad. Soon, due to the hunger strikes, Mr. Jiang Lin had difficulty urinating. Without regular urine discharges, his abdomen became swollen, which then became life threatening. The forced labor camp became afraid of bearing responsibility, so they hurriedly sent him out for hospital care. At that time, I saw the camp doctor Liang put handcuffs on Mr. Jiang Lin without any concern for his near-death situation. They took him downstairs to the police car. The camp discipline instructor Guan opened up the trunk and threw Mr. Jiang Lin on top of the dusty spare tire in the trunk.

There was another practitioner named Mr. Song Lijun. One day at the work site he suddenly could not move his hands or legs and could not talk. The camp sent him out to a hospital but they could not find out what was wrong with him. This was a critical situation so the camp notified his family members to come. But the camp would not allow his relatives to take Mr. Song home for medical treatment. The camp also asked the family for a medical fee of a few thousand yuan [Chinese currency, the monthly salary for an average Chinese urban worker is about 500 yuan]. All medical expenses were to be paid by the detained practitioner's family.

I mention all the above to make people aware of the camp conditions and to help more people know the truth of the current situation of Falun Gong practitioners. It is important to no longer to be deceived by all the lies. I also hope that kind-hearted people can extend a helping hand to give support to the suffering practitioners. Together, let's stop the persecution and uphold justice and the freedom of belief!