(Clearwisdom.net) Ten years ago in April, Falun Gong practitioners peacefully went to the Office of Appeals in Beijing to request a legal, free environment to practice. This was the first time that the world heard about Falun Gong. Ten years have gone by, and the persecution continues. Falun Gong practitioners the world over have not changed their peaceful and rational means to try to stop the Chinese Communist Party's brutal persecution. The have gained widespread respect and support from non-practitioners.

Over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered in Liberty Plaza in Taipei to remember the April 25 anniversary

Over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered in Liberty Plaza in Taipei to remember the April 25 anniversary

Over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered in Liberty Plaza in Taipei to remember the April 25 anniversary

Over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered in Liberty Plaza in Taipei to remember the April 25 anniversary

Tourists from Mainland China were attracted to information about the persecution

Tourists from Mainland China took photos to remember this grand occasion

A tourist from Guizhou said with delight, "This is the best! This is the most worthy of keeping."

Ten years after the persecution began, on the afternoon of April 25, 2009, over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners from Taipei and nearby cities and counties gathered at Liberty Plaza in Taipei. They held a press conference and practiced the exercises together to memorialize the occasion. Reporters from the Associated Press, AFP, Central News Agency, Liberty Times, Japan's NHK Television, and other media were present.

Moved by the practitioners' peacefulness

Mr. Yuan Hongbing, who was formerly a law professor from Peking University, happened to be in Taiwan. Mr. Yuan said, "I remember the April 25 event from 10 years ago. I happened to have witnessed the appeal. When I saw so many Falun Gong practitioners there being peaceful, I was very touched."

Photo caption: Former law professor at Peking University, Mr. Yuan Hongbing, spoke at the press conference

Mr. Yuan said, "The Chinese Communist Party's dictatorship uses state terrorism to suppress the freedom of thought, speech, and belief. Despite this extremely brutal 'red terror,' a group of cultivators who followed Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance emerged. Of course the dictatorship of the CCP cannot tolerate this. That was why it used propaganda machines tightly under its control to defame Falun Gong and its practitioners. The defamatory articles were published to lay the foundation of further persecution. That was why the practitioners went to Beijing to appeal."

He said, "Ten years have passed. I believe in the near future, the dictatorship will receive retribution for the crimes it committed against Falun Gong practitioners."

Mr. You Benyu became a Falun Gong practitioner after hearing about the April 25 appeal

Mr. You Benyu is a practitioner from Yilan area. He started practicing after hearing about the April 25 appeal. He said, "Today is also my ten year anniversary of becoming a practitioner. I remember first hearing about the appeal. They didn't shout slogans, bring protest materials, or throw eggs. Instead, they waited in line, and some did the exercises. I thought that was amusing and wondered how effective the appeal was. I also thought that under the communist system, even protesters acted strange." "However, I also heard that when they left, they did not leave any trash at all. Even cigarette ends thrown by the police were picked up. I was very surprised, so I thought I should find out what Falun Gong was really about."

Out of curiosity, Mr. You went to a bookstore and bought a set of videotapes of the Guangzhou lectures. He finished it within a few days. He said, "That was how I became a practitioner. I stopped drinking alcohol and my temper became much milder. My health also improved. I feel very energetic." He came as a beneficiary of Falun Gong, wanting to share with others what he gained.

Those who know the facts are telling others

The Liberty Plaza in Taipei is a prime location for public gatherings and a variety of organized activities. Whenever there is an event, police from Zhongzheng First Branch are dispatched. They have seen all kinds of groups and behavior. This time they were also here to keep order. However, their focus this time was to protect Falun Gong practitioners' peaceful environment.

Five or six policemen stood at the corners of the plaza, looking with ease at the practitioners doing the exercises. When a practitioner who wasn't wearing a yellow exercise outfit went to chat with the police, at first they were a little nervous. They asked, "Where are you from?" As the practitioner was about to answer, they suddenly said, "Yes, I know. You are also a practitioner." Then they started chatting with the practitioner. Another branch officer also joined the chat.

An elderly man walked by the group practice site and asked, "Why does the Chinese Communist Party persecute Falun Gong? They all look like good people, very comfortable and peaceful. Why is the practice banned? I don't understand." Two police officers said, "Before, Falun Gong was really popular in Mainland China. More and more people were learning it. The Chinese Communist Party was afraid of Falun Gong. The more popular the practice, the more scared they became."

The elderly man said, "If it was a good practice, the government should promote it. Why did it ban it?" The police officers said, "The Chinese Communist Party doesn't allow people to gather. Everyone knows this. They not only defame Falun Gong, but also beat people to death. Some practitioners' organs were harvested. They were very brutal." These officers are clarifying the facts to others. The elderly man said, "Look at how peaceful they are when doing the exercises. Even I want to join them."

The Most Peaceful Group

When asked of his impression of the Falun Gong gathering, a policeman surnamed Hong said, "Falun Gong practitioners have hosted many activities at Liberty Plaza. There are often a lot of practitioners. But they follow our orders and are very peaceful. They have left a good impression. Today, just like usual, they have five or six practitioners whose job is to keep order."

Mr. Chen, a passer-by who frequents Liberty Plaza, lamented that even such a peaceful group exercise would be brutally persecuted. He said he could not comprehend why. On the other hand, he believes that anything persecuted by the Chinese Communist Party is good. That's why he supports Falun Gong and wants to know more about it.

A plainclothes policeman surnamed Lai sat on some steps and tried to imitate the exercises with his arms. He comes into contact with Falun Gong often due to his job. He said that every practitioner he has ever dealt with has been kind. The shifts during Falun Gong activities are the easiest, because the practitioners are the most peaceful group.

Mainland Chinese Tourist: This is the most worthy of keeping

During the event, five or six big buses came by and carried tourists from Guangdong, Zhejiang, Guizhou, and other places in Mainland China. When they saw the banners that read, "Falun Dafa Is Great," and Truth-Compassion-Forbearance, as well as the over 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners in yellow exercise outfits, they were shocked. Many took pictures and walked away.

The tourists on one bus were especially brave. They not only took pictures with Falun Gong practitioners in the background, but also took truth-clarification materials. They only went back to the bus after repeated urging by the tour guide. A man from Mainland China said, "This is the first time I've seen something of such a grand scale. It's too bad that my camera is not very good and cannot capture the whole picture."

A tourist from Guizhou said with delight, "This is the best. This is the most worthy of keeping."

A tourist from Guangdong praised freedom in Taiwan. He recounted the persecution against Falun Gong in Mainland China since 1999. He said that although he was an atheist, he would not be opposed to others practicing Falun Gong.

Fulfilled the Pursuit of a Lifetime

Mr. Lin is an elderly man from Taoyuan. He traveled nearly two hours just to participate in this event. He sat quietly on some steps near the street, and read materials about the persecution that he just received. He pointed to the photos of Falun Gong practitioners being tortured, and said that these photos made him sad. He thinks that these crimes should be exposed so that the people in Taiwan can see the evil nature of the Chinese Communist Party.

In pursuit of the truth of the universe, Mr. Lin has traveled all over the world. His lifelong search ended two weeks ago when he received a copy of Zhuan Falun from a friend. He was moved to read the teachings, as many questions he had for a long time were answered. On this trip to Taipei, he also planned to buy a few copies of Zhuan Falun for his friends back home. He mentioned that he was trying to sit in the lotus position despite his age, which is approaching 70. When he observed the practitioners doing the five exercises in perfect harmony, he also wanted to find a practice site back home which he can join to learn the exercises.