(Clearwisdom.net) The Australian Senate passed motion No. 170 on June 20, 2005, reaffirming its commitment to freedom of belief within Australia, and recognizing the freedom of Australians to practice Falun Gong without fear of harassment. The motion called on the Australian government to thoroughly investigate the recent alleged harassment of Falun Gong practitioners in Australia.

Chen Yonglin, Chinese Communist Party (CCP) diplomat, Hao Fengjun, former officer with China's Public Security Bureau, and several other Chinese officers, defected in succession, and exposed the inside story of the CCP's use of a spy network to monitor and harass Falun Gong practitioners and dissidents overseas. Their claims make Falun Gong a hot topic of the Australian media and Australia community.

The following is the script of motion No. 170 passed at Australian Senate:

"That the Senate:

(1) notes that the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights applies to the treatment of Falun Gong practitioners worldwide;

(2) reaffirms its commitment to freedom of belief within Australia and recognizes the freedom of Australians to practice Falun Gong without fear of harassment;

(3) expresses its concern regarding recent allegations that the Chinese Government is closely monitoring the activities of Falun Gong practitioners in Australia; and,

(4) calls on the Government to thoroughly investigate those allegations."

The motion was initiated by Senator Natasha Stott Despoja, representing the Democratic Party, and backed up by the largest opposition party- the Labor Party.

Australian Senator Despoja speaks at the rally, and calls for protecting Falun Gong practitioners from harassment

Despoja said at a rally, "As a government, when an incident of human rights abuse occurs, we should bring it up so as to ensure that they stop their act of human rights abuse. We cannot place trade interests above human rights and people's dignity.

But our government is taking such a risk to do so, and it is also what the Democratic Party has been opposing by various means.

I initiated today's motion representing the Democratic Party, the purpose is to see clearly the situation of the CCP's human rights abuses, especially its violation of Falun Gong practitioners' human rights."