(Clearwisdom.net) On September 28, 2005, Ottawa practitioners held an urgent appeal to call on the Canadian government to bar Xia Deren, Dalian Mayor and Deputy Governor of Liaoning Province, from entering Canada. Xia is scheduled to hold a business visit to Canada on September 30. Practitioners also held an anti-torture exhibition with live models to expose the persecution. The event coincided with the "Hands Across the Border" charity barbecue on Parliament Hill organized by the four major Canadian parties. The practitioners' appeal and anti-torture exhibition attracted the attention of thousands.

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Practitioners appeal at Canada's Parliament Hill

Renowned human rights lawyer David Matas wrote to the relevant Canadian officials, including the Ministers of Public Safety, Immigration and Foreign Affairs on August 25 to ask the Canadian government to deny visas to perpetrators of the persecution. Mr. Matas pointed out that based on Canada's Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Program, one would be denied entry to Canada if he were found guilty of crimes against humanity. He said that if such officials were allowed to enter Canada, it's sending a message that Canada condones genocide and human rights violations. He said that Canada must act according to international human rights agreements and Canada's Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Program. Victims of such crimes should not be left to fend for themselves.

MP Kilgour said in his speech, "There can be no doubt in anyone's mind that the Chinese government persecutes Falun Gong practitioners mercilessly across China for what is perfectly legal in virtually every other country on earth. Despite its claims that there is freedom of religious conscience in China, Falun Gong practitioners continue to be victimized across the country. I urge the government to follow the letter of its own law and respect the rights of its citizens." The MP also said: "[I]...agree fully that these individuals should not be permitted to enter Canada on the basis of their complicity in the violation of the human rights of Falun Gong practitioners."

Liaoning Province and Dalian City are two of the worst offenders in the persecution. In June 2003, the Federal District Court of the Northern California found Xia responsible for torture, cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment, arbitrary detention, crimes against humanity, and interference with freedom of religion and belief.

By the end of January 2004, Canada's Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Program (CCAHWCP) established a list of 45 Chinese officials from each level of Party Committees, "610 Offices," local governments and forced labor camps that are responsible for the persecution of Falun Gong for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). Xia Deren was included in the list. According to Canadian laws, if anyone on the list attempts to enter Canada, a prompt investigation could take place, potentially resulting in refusal of visas to Canada, deportation, charges and punishment based on Canada's laws governing crimes against humanity and war crimes.

In the beginning of this September, Bo Xilai, former Governor of Liaoning Province, was scheduled to visit Canada with Chinese President Hu. Bo is also in the CCAHWCP's watch list. By the time of Hu's visit, Bo's name disappeared from the delegation's list. Analysts believed that that incident was related to the strong voice of the Canadian public, lawyers, MPs and supporters of Falun Gong.

Reportedly, on July 10, a Dalian official website announced that Xia and his delegation would hold a Dalian City Job Fair in either Vancouver or Toronto on September 30. However, that web page was recently removed.

According to 2003 data from the CCAHWCP, 581 people were denied entry to Canada from 1999 to 2000 for suspected involvement in crimes against humanity and war crimes. This figure varied to 644 for 2000-2001 and 445 for 2001-2002. An official of the CCAHWCP said that Canada doesn't need to give any explanation to such individuals for denial of entry.