(name and address omitted)
Houston, TX

Dear (name omitted):

Thank you very much for contacting me regarding the treatment of Falun Gong practitioners in China. I appreciate knowing of your concerns.

As you may know, Falun Gong combines meditation and breathing exercises with a doctrine loosely rooted in Buddhist and Taoist teachings. Recently, practitioners in China, nearly 50,000 followers, have been detained and many sent labour camps without a trial. A recent example is the imprisonment of Mrs. Teng Chunyan, a U.S. Resident Alien who taught at the New York Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

I oppose the persecution of individuals based upon their religious beliefs. I voted for Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) with China because it establishes a special commission to monitor human rights in China. The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) at the Department of State authorizes the President to impose sanctions upon countries that violate religious freedom. On the basis of their findings, the Department of State has identified China as a "country of particular concern". The Department of State has made a strong objection to Ms. Teng's imprisonment and continues to pressure the Chinese government for Mrs. Teng's release.

I appreciate your bringing this matter to my attention. I will continue to monitor the situation. Please do not hesitate to contact me again on this or any other issue.


Kay Bailey Hutchison
United States Senator