Video: FGM TV News - 12/30/2002
- Falun Gong is freely practiced in more than 50 countries, but relentlessly persecuted in China.
- The peaceful courage of practitioners there has shocked their oppressors and moved the people of the world.
- While China continues to block information about the persecution, FGM TV brings you the stories you may not hear anywhere else.
Hello, and welcome to the FGM TV weekly news review on December 30, 2002
I'm Susan Mitchell. David Tompkins will be back from a well-earned vacation next week.
In this week's update from China...
- The number of Falun Gong practitioners verified to have died while in detention is 537. Reliable sources inside China, however, put the actual death count in the thousands.
- In the last 7 days, reports of persecution have come in from 12 provinces, including the cities of Beijing, Chongqing, Wuhan and Nanhai.
- 451 people declared as void all statements they had made under torture and at times when their minds were not clear. They said they intend to continue to practice Falun Gong.
Our top stories this week:
- 2002, the year in review and a few of the outcomes detailed in today's stories: from tapping into TV cable networks in China to a global campaign to rescue their relatives illegally imprisoned, Falun Gong practitioners had a busy year.
And some of our other stories:
- Christine Loftus interviews the twin sister of a young woman released from a Chinese labor camp
- Jail terms handed down to Falun Gong practitioners arrested for tapping into Chinese State TV networks
- At least 26 dead after a tornado and a killer hailstorm rip through Guangdong province
- The nature of torture in China today.
- Important things come in small packages
Canadian Government obtains release of a Falun Gong relative from a Chinese Labor Camp
Christine Loftus reports.
The year 2002, for Western Falun Gong practitioners, was a year of courage and included some forthright dealings in the courts.
- In Canada, it began in January for Montrealers with a lawsuit against Les Presses Chinoise. This was followed later in the year by Torontonians suing Sing Tao newspaper for defamatory photos and inciting hatred.
- 59 Westerners travelled to Tiananmen Square to raise a beautiful banner -- and almost immediately got shoved into police vans and overnight detention in a filthy prison cell. Their brave action generated tremendous global media coverage and awareness of the plight of Falun Gong practitioners in China. It also inspired many other practitioners to go to Tiananmen to appeal, either by themselves, or in small groups.
- One joyful highlight of the year 2002 was the return to Canada of Mr. Shenli Lin in February, after being in a labor camp for two years. His crime? He delivered a letter to the appeals office in Beijing requesting a peaceful dialogue between the Chinese government and Falun Gong. He is shown here on arrival at Montreal airport with his wife, Ms. Jinyu Li, who had campaigned tirelessly for his release.
- One not-so-happy incident: 16 peaceful practitioners in Hong Kong are brutally removed from a legal appeal outside the China Liaison Office, and taken to court.
But outside China, people resisted the persecution:
- The Canadian Broadcasting Standards Council found Chinese CCTV propaganda unfit for Canadian TV.
- When government officials in Iceland detained Falun Gong practitioners who had come to peacefully appeal during Jiang Zemin's visit to Iceland, hundreds of citizens came out to protest ... and also paid for a full page apology to practitioners in the island's main newspaper.
- Jiang Zemin is sued in a U.S. court for crimes against humanity, and Chinese Vice Premier Li Lanqing is sued in a France for the same crimes. They will eventually be tried by the International Court in The Hague for their unspeakable crimes against Falun Gong Practitioners and their defamation of the practice and its founder, Mr. Li Hongzhi.
Jail Terms for Tapping Into TV and Radio Signals
- On December 28, 2002, the official Xinhua News Agency reported that eight Falun Gong practitioners have been handed prison sentences of up to 13 years, for tapping into local television and radio signals in eastern China's Anhui province.
- For more than three and a half years, state TV and radio have broadcast a constant stream of lies about the practice of Falun Dafa.
- At the same time, reversing the trend from when the government fully supported the practice between 1992 and 1999, State media have refused to broadcast any news of the sometimes miraculous benefits experienced by practitioners and people who have defended Falun Gong.
Guangdong Province is Pounded by a Tornado and a Killer Hailstorm
- According to the official newspaper, China Daily, up to 26 people were killed and 100 injured when a tornado and severe hailstorm ripped through China's southern province of Guangdong.
- The report stated that more than 220,000 residents in Suixi County and in the cities of Leizhou, Lianjiang and Zhanjiang were affected by the tornado.
- The storm left approximately 5,200 homes wrecked and sank 50 boats. Twenty-one people are reported missing in icy waters, and officials hold little hope of finding them alive.
- In early July 2002, police in Zhanjiang city arrested more than twelve practitioners and also destroyed several centers where they were producing truth-clarifying materials such as flyers and Video CDs.
- Three months later, the practitioners were tried in a secret court hearing. It was reported that Zhuo Jiangshan was sentenced to 15 years in jail, and the others were also sentenced heavily.
- It is said that good will be rewarded and evil deeds will be punished. If this is true, then the citizens of Zhanjiang seem to be receiving retribution for their unjust treatment of innocent practitioners.
The Nature of Torture in China Today:
- Illegally detained practitioner Mr. Lulin Fu has been locked up in a 1 square meter solitary compartment in Qin Duankou Prison for two months, because he refused to follow the police's orders (in revealing information, or in signing guarantees to stop practicing Falun Gong).
- He is unable to stand up or lie down to sleep in the compartment, and he is staging a hunger
strike in protest.
After he is released from the compartment, he will be sent to the No. 1 division, where policemen claim that in order to have Mr. Fu give up his belief, they would order criminals to torture him.
- They said that if Mr. Fu refuses to write a "repentance statement," he would be tortured to the point of "no hope of living, and no chance of dying."
Article 23: still in the news
- Public consultation has now ended for comments on Hong Kong's Article 23, the section of their Basic Law dealing with sedition and treason. Details of the current draft of the legislation have prompted at least 192,000 submissions of concern from governments, unions, human rights organizations, journalists, lawyers, corporations and individuals around the world.
- Falun Gong practitioners in Hong Kong could be in grave danger of imprisonment, torture and even death if the legislation is not adjusted, simply because the Jiang regime has banned the practice on the mainland. Therefore, practitioners in many countries have come out to protest and to educate the public.
- In Tokyo, we see one of many typical parades with practitioners carrying large banners through the streets of their city. And on the other side of the world...
- In Strasbourg, France, they chose to be a little more stationery, to give the public a chance to drop by, watch the exercises, and hear first-hand accounts of the persecution in China.
Important Things Come in Small Packages
- In North America, Falun Dafa Experience-Sharing Conferences typically draw about 2,000 participants. In China, it is illegal for practitioners to speak about their practice and so, a message received this week is rather extraordinary. It said, in part:
- "On November 8, in a Northern Chinese city, fourteen practitioners sat together and had a small experience-sharing meeting. Practitioners first sent forth righteous thoughts, studied our Teacher's writings, and then shared our experiences of cultivation in this special time period. The conference lasted for over 2 hours."
- In another instance, two soldiers who were friends were recently discharged from the military. Mr. Qing went to work in a police department and Mr. Shan became a blue collar worker. One day, Mr. Qing came across Falun Dafa books and videotapes that had been confiscated by the police from practitioners' houses. He quickly took two copies of Zhuan Falun and called his friend, saying "I have got a treasured book for you. Please come over here as soon as possible." Mr. Shan came right way and took one of the books. Everyone in Mr. Shan's workplace is talking about how the friends who served together in the military are now reading Zhuan Falun at the same time.
People around the world celebrate the last two weeks of each year in various ways and Falun Dafa practitioners are no exception.
- In Vancouver, they invited friends and relatives to share good food, music and... Chinese calligraphy!
- In the Taoyuan district of Taiwan, practitioners spent half a day together, studying their Teacher's writings, and doing the exercises together.
- Toronto practitioners maintained their tradition of holding several days' study at the University of Toronto. Christine Loftus was there.
Thanks Christine, and...
Thanks for watching FGMtv...
- dedicated to breaking through China's information blockade, exposing the state terrorism, and bringing you the truth of Falun Gong.