(Clearwisdom.net) On March 28, 2007, Falun Gong practitioner Ma Hui and her 8-year-old daughter Ma Jingjing, who had earlier been granted UN Refugee Status in St. Petersburg, Russia, were taken away from their home by six officers from the Deportation Department of the Immigration Bureau in St. Petersburg, Russia. On the night of March 28, one Russian policewoman and several Chinese government officers forced Ma Hui and Ma Jingjing to board Flight FV-215 from St. Petersburg to Beijing, and deported them to China. The plane took off at 19:50 from St. Petersburg.

Falun Gong practitioner Ma Hui and her 8-year-old daughter Ma Jingjing

On March 29, Ma Hui's family members, who went to the International Airport in Beijing to meet them, did not see Ma Hui and her daughter. Later, they learned that Ma Jingjing has been sent to Ma Hui's sister, but they didn't have any information about Ma Hui. Ma Hui's family members received a phone call from a man who told them that Ma Hui and her daughter arrived in Harbin, and that Ma Jingjing was at Ma Hui's sister's house. The man also told them that it was unclear if Ma Hui can go home or not. Ma Hui's family believes that Ma Hui is being held by China's National Security Bureau. Ma Hui and Ma Jingjing's situation have drawn international attention.

Well Planed Arrest

On the morning of March, after Ma Hui and Ma Jingjing had breakfast, six officers from the Deportation Department of Immigration Bureau in St. Petersburg came to their house. They turned off Ma Hui's phone and asked Ma Hui to go with them. Ma Hui was allowed to bring a purse with her passport in it.

After hearing of Ma Hui's arrest, the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) immediately acted to rescue them. Officers from UNHCR, The International Red Cross, lawyers, Ma Hui's husband and several Falun Gong practitioners went to the airport and tried to rescue Ma Hui and her daughter. At the beginning, the officers of the airport denied that Ma Hui and her daughter were there. Later, it was verified that they were there, then the airport refused to allow the lawyer and Ma Hui's family to meet them. The officers from UNHCR kept calling the Immigration Bureau of Russia and the branch in St. Petersburg. The Immigration Bureau lied that they already dropped the order of deportation. But when the officers from UNHCR and Ma Hui's family talked to the immigration officers at the airport, the airport said that they cannot find any officers to help them. They used this excuse to buy time for themselves. They didn't give any direct answer to Ma Hui's family even after the plane took off. During the whole process, several unidentified Chinese people were seen in the police department and airport.

Mr. Li, Ma Hui's husband, expressed that deportation is a complex procedure, but the deportation of Ma Hui was executed so fast. He believed that the whole deportation was well planned in advance. Every step of this deportation was unusual. There was a flight from St. Petersburg to China on March 28, so they took action on that day. They even bought the airplane ticket before it, but Ma Hui and her family didn't know anything before they were arrested. The Chinese Communist Party's fingerprint can be seen in every step of the whole deportation.

International Society Condemns the Russian Government Assisting the CCP in Persecuting Falun Gong

Both Ma Hui and her husband are Falun Gong practitioners. They have been living in Russia for many years. After the CCP launched the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999, they could not go back to China. Ma Hui applied for UN Refugee Status and it was granted three years ago. However, the Immigration Bureau in Russia refuses to grant refugee status to Falun Gong practitioners, so her case was pending for a long time. She was supposed to have a trial of her case on March 30. According to the laws in Russia, she can stay in Russia legally before the trial.

The deportation of Ma Hui and her daughter has drawn attention from international society. A member of European Parliament who is also former president of the European Union-Duma Cooperation Committee wrote to the Russian government, requesting cancellation of the deportation. He was very worried that Mrs. Ma Hui would be arrested as soon as she got off the plane in China. He expressed that he cannot imagine what would happen because Falun Gong practitioners are persecuted every day, including being tortured and organs being harvested.

A representative of the International Red Cross expressed that the deportation violates not only the laws in Russia but also the European Convention on Human Rights and relevant international laws of deportation. Moreover, before the deportation, the Russian government should inform the representatives of the Red Cross and lawyers and obtain the signature of the deportee's family.

Six Russian media reported the deportation. They pointed out that deporting a woman and a child who have UN refugee status while their Russian refugee case is pending is both immoral and violates the law.

Mr. Li, Ma Hui's husband, pointed out that the CCP is behind the whole deportation, and this is another case of the CCP persecuting Falun Gong overseas. The CCP gets the Russian government involved in the persecution of Falun Gong by promising economic partnership, and the Russian government unreasonably accepted the CCP's instigation. Mr. Li expressed that succumbing to the CCP's pressure badly tarnishes the international image of Russia and brings danger to the whole country.