Hulan Prison: Up to Twelve People are Forced to Sleep in Each Bunk
(Clearwisdom.net) On March 9, 2005, I was taken to the "training team" in the Hulan Prison in Heilongjiang Province. The guards there not only encourage the inmates to persecute Falun Gong practitioners spiritually and physically, but even turn the sleeping spaces into persecution tools. A bed as narrow as five feet wide (about seven feet long) is used to accommodate six to seven persons, sometimes even as many as twelve. They would have some of the beds unoccupied rather than let practitioners sleep there.
People in the Hulan Prison refer to the training team as "hell on earth." On March 9, 2005, when I was sent there, the guards ordered me to put on a prison uniform in the duty office. I said, "No, I won't put it on, as I am not a criminal." After being in a deadlock for an entire afternoon, several inmates finally succeeded in putting the orange prison jacket on me, and on the back of the jacket two words were printed: "Strict Management."
The training team persecutes Falun Gong practitioners ruthlessly. They adopt the so-called "five-united-into-one" policy, which means having four inmates monitor one practitioner. Wardens of the training team order the leader of the inmates to supervise each "five-united-into-one" group, asking the four inmates to watch practitioners' words and deeds. Communication among practitioners is strictly prohibited.
Everyone in the training team must get up at 5:00 a.m. every morning, and then line up and go to the restroom together. Meals must be finished within five minutes. Then everyone is either forced into the "compressed sitting" or has to peel garlic for the entire day. "Compressed sitting" means to sit with the chest pressed tightly against the back of the next person, with the eyes looking at the back of the other person's head to form a chain. Lunch has to be finished in very short time as well. After that, everyone is again forced into "compressed sitting," or has to peel garlic or recite the prison regulations. Anyone who cannot memorize the regulations will be beaten or verbally abused. No one is allowed to sleep before 10:00 p.m. at night. If one cannot reach the work quota, he or she will be deprived of sleep. Sometimes practitioners have to work into the next morning, with only two or three hours of sleep.
When practitioners are allowed to sleep, six or seven people have to squeeze onto a bunk as narrow as five feet wide (about seven feet long), sometimes as many as nine people. Last year it was twelve people sharing the same bunk. It is almost impossible for anyone to lie down even on his or her side. Everyone's legs have to be put on top of the next person. Everyone has to smell the feet of the next person. In summer it is even worse. As soon as one lies down, one perspires all over the body.
Because of an extended period of "compressed sitting," hard labor, no rest, no time to wash clothes (no washbasin, no laundry powder, no soap, etc), body lice appear on everyone, and on our clothes and bedding. Sometimes they just drop down from the upper bunk to the lower bunk.
Every new inmate has to recite the regulations of the prison. When it was my turn, I refused to do so. Because I practice Falun Gong, I try to be a good person. I have not committed any crimes. The leader of the inmates asked three or four inmates to hold me in a "U" position with my head pushed down and back against the wall.
Every practitioner who is sent to the training team is assigned to a warden, who must ensure that the practitioner write a so-called guarantee statement to give up Falun Gong. If the practitioner refuses, the training team will use every method they can to force them. Three practitioners from Acheng City were immediately beaten upon their arrival. Then they were ordered to write the guarantee statement, which they refused. As a result, they were forced to stand motionless from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. every day, with four inmates watching each of them. Sometimes they had to stand until midnight. Except for very short breaks for meals and restroom, they had to stand still, while the four inmates took their turns monitoring them. Whenever the practitioners failed to stand straight, they were beaten mercilessly.
As a result, some practitioners could not eat, because their bodies became swollen. Some practitioners were forced to stand still for as long as one month. They could not stand up, because their legs became swollen and ulcerated. Some practitioners who refused to write the guarantee statement were beaten so severely that they rolled all over the floor with pain, and the inmates then pushed them underneath a bed and later dragged them out.
When I asked the guards why they allowed the inmates to beat practitioners, they said, "It is none of your business."