Germany: Falun Gong at Augsburg Cultural Festival (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) The annual Multi-Cultural Festival in Augsburg, Germany was held on July 12th, 2008. Various political, cultural, charity and human rights organizations and groups from more than ten countries attended the festival, among which were Falun Gong practitioners from Germany and Austria. Falun Gong is no stranger to the people of Augsburg, as it was the fifth time that Falun Gong has been invited to attend the festival. Practitioners demonstrated the Falun Gong exercises and participated in the parade, and received a warm welcome from the people of Augsburg. The festival organizers expressed great satisfaction about Falun Gong's participation, and said they hoped that the Falun Gong group would be seen again at the next event.
A secondary school student wearing a Reporters Without Borders t-shirt signed his name on the petition form calling for an end to the persecution of Falun Gong by the Chinese Communist Party
The Falun Gong procession at the Multi-Cultural Festival in Augsburg
Many people were drawn by the Falun Gong exercise demonstration. Many were happy to see the Falun Gong group in the parade and they came to the Falun Gong information desk to watch the exercise demonstration and ask about the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) persecution of Falun Gong.
A group of secondary school students wearing T-shirts designed by Reporters Without Borders protesting the human rights abuses by the CCP related to the Olympic Games came to the information desk, and they asked to sign the petition for the Global Million Signatures Calling For an End to the Persecution of Falun Gong Before the Beijing Olympic Games. Many people signed the petition that day.
A Falun Gong practitioner who had just come to Germany from mainland China said that he was very happy to see Falun Gong practitioners in a foreign country, taking part in local events. He told a reporter, "I have only seen these activities via the Internet, but now I am very excited that I am here and can see the Falun Gong activities for myself. As I am a practitioner, too, I feel very excited and inspired after seeing this for the first time." He added, "I'd also like to say that I think the parades that Falun Gong practitioners take part in are very much helping to expose the persecution. I can see that Falun Gong receives great support overseas, which makes me feel happy and confident about the future of Falun Gong. I think activities of this kind will help end the CCP's persecution of Falun Gong sooner. In China, people cannot see any activities like this and Falun Gong practitioners are basically in a situation where they cannot openly and freely express their opinions. There are still a large number of people in China who don't really understand Falun Gong. Sometimes, when I talked to my friends and colleagues, I found that they had strong misunderstandings about Falun Gong. This is all because they have been deceived by the propaganda and lies of the CCP media. In mainland China, there is no free environment as in overseas countries. As a Falun Gong practitioner in mainland China, I am so moved to see so many practitioners here participating in this activity in spite of the rain. I think I should do more to raise awareness among the people and make more contact with fellow practitioners, so as to put an early end to the persecution and to save more people along with our practitioners overseas.