82-Year-Old Mother Denied the Right to Visit Her Daughter Imprisoned in Liaoning Province Women's Prison
(Clearwisdom.net) Ms. Ding Zhengfang, a practitioner from Dalian City, Liaoning Province, is being detained in the Liaoning Province Women's Prison and suffering severe illness. When her 82-year-old mother came to visit her after an overnight journey, the prison officials refused to let her meet her daughter with various excuses. She had to return home.
On August 16, 2007, the police from the Kuiying Police Station in Zhongshan District, Dalian City, illegally arrested Ms. Ding. After being detained in the Yaojia Detention Center for 11 months, she was sentenced to 8 years in prison. In mid July 2008, she was transferred to the Ninth Division of the Liaoning Province Women's Prison in Shenyang City, Liaoning Province.
In September 2008, Ms. Ding's two sisters went to the prison to visit her. They brought their identification cards. However, the prison officials refused to let them meet Ms. Ding with the excuse that their IDs were not sufficient to prove their relationship with Ding Zhengfang. They told the two sisters to get proof from the local police station. They also told them that Ms. Ding was suffering from high blood pressure, heart disease and cerebral thrombus and was being attended to by two people. They warned the family to be mentally prepared.
Ms. Ding's younger sister said to the prison officials, "Ms. Ding was in a very healthy condition after practicing Falun Gong, without any illnesses. How could she be suffering from so many illnesses suddenly? Has she been confined in a tiny cell?" The two female officials, surnamed Li and Zhang, denied this immediately. The two sisters insisted on seeing Ms. Ding but were refused. They had to go back home.
When Ms. Ding's mother heard the news, she was shocked and became ill. She was admitted to the hospital for over a month for treatment. After she left the hospital on February 24, 2009, she went to visit Ms. Ding with four relatives. They took an overnight train since she was anxious to see her daughter.
However, the prison officials refused to let any relatives meet Ms. Ding, using various excuses. First, they mentioned that they needed the residential certificate to prove their relationship with Ms. Ding. When Ms. Ding's relatives showed the proof, they said that her mother had written a letter to the prison guards and therefore she was not permitted to see Ms. Ding. She insisted on seeing her daughter but the prison officials refused. She became angry, "Today, not only I will meet my daughter, but I will also take her home. I will check whether she was beaten. You are afraid; that's why you refused to let us see her."
Right after these words, three male and three female guards surrounded them. They declared that they would call the police to have them arrested. One of the male guard pointed his finger at Ms. Ding's mother and said, "Your attitude is bad, we definitely won't let you see your daughter." Ms. Ding's relatives were not afraid. They told the other visitors about Ms. Ding's innocence and her practicing Falun Gong. They insisted on seeing Ms. Ding. Both sides refused to compromise for two hours. The prison guard even refused to let Ms. Ding's husband see her. Ms. Ding's relatives arrived at the prison early at 9:00 a.m. in order to deal with the prison guards. However, during the lunch break, the prison guards still refused to let them see Ms. Ding. Without any choice, Ms. Ding's relatives found a hotel to stay at and planned to deal with the prison officials the next day.
The next morning, Ms. Ding's relatives went to the prison again. Ms. Ding's husband met with the prison officials first about visiting his wife. However, they refused him and said, "You'd better leave and you won't be able to meet her this month." Ms. Ding's mother had traveled around the clock and was really weak. She had to hold on to others to walk in the cold snow of Shenyang City. She had been through so much suffering in an effort to see her daughter, but she could not see her.
Ms. Ding's relatives decided to visit the office of the Liaoning Province Judicial Department. At about 1:00 p.m., they ran into the Bureau Chief at the door as he passed by. The Chief told Ms. Ding's relatives that he would get someone who was familiar with the issue to meet with them.
After an hour of waiting, a female staff member in her 30s finally came. After she heard the story, she went back in without saying anything. At 3:00 p.m., as the end of the work day was approaching, Ms. Ding's relatives asked the security guard to check again. After a while, the female staff member came out again and said, "I have to know everything regarding your issue. You don't need to say anything more since it is the prison rules. They won't let you meet Ding."
With more delay, Ms. Ding's relatives argued with her, "Aren't Falun Gong practitioners citizens? Shouldn't they have the right to be visited by their relatives?" After listening to these words, she called the prison to deal with the issue. Finally, the prison officials agreed to let only the husband visit Ms. Ding but not the other relatives. Ms. Ding's husband stayed another day in Shenyang City and finally got to see her on the third day. Ms. Ding's mother suffered a lot along the way and felt very angry and exhausted. She sadly left for home.