Falun Gong practitioner Ms. Zhang Zhenmin in Gansu Province brutally tortured

During the morning of May 3, 2002, four or five officers from the Chengguan Police Department in Lanzhou City deceived Ms. Zhang Zhenmin into opening the door to her home by claiming the need to inspect her gas burner. After she opened the door, the police immediately handcuffed her and another Falun Gong practitioner who was in Zhang Zhenmin's home at the time. Without any search warrant, the police proceeded to ransack the home. They took a computer, a clock, a bankbook with about 4,000 yuan in it, Zhang Zhenmin's salary card worth about 200 yuan, and her husband Niu Manjiang's salary card worth about 2,000 yuan. They didn't write any receipts and haven't returned anything they took.

Zhang Zhenmin was first held at the Xiguoyuan Detention Center and was transferred to the Hualinshan No. 2 Detention Center, where she was forced to do slave labor. She held a hunger strike, and a male guard tortured her with a method called "backward bending." He put shackles on her feet and handcuffed her hands behind her back, and then he used a metal wire about 16" long and ?quot; in diameter to wire the handcuffs and shackles together. This torture method forced Zhang Zhemin to kneel in an arched backward position for a very long time. Because the guards refused to unlock her, she had to rely on inmates to help her eat, drink and relieve herself. Zhang Zhemin was tortured with "backward bending" for 39 days until her whole body became swollen. The handcuffs cut her flesh and embedded into her wrists and could not be removed when they were unlocked. Ms. Zhang could not straighten her back, move her legs or raise her arms for several days. The inmates applied hot towels on her arms to prevent the muscles from stiffening.

Several months after Zhang Zhenmin's arrest, her husband Niu Manjiang, also a Falun Gong practitioner, was also arrested. He was illegally sentenced to three years of forced labor and is currently being held at the Dashaping Prison in Lanzhou City. Because he persisted in Falun Gong practice, he was detained in solitary confinement, and the authorities didn't allow his family to visit him. The couple's 11-year-old son is staying with his grandparents.

Zhang Zhemin refused to give up her belief, and was illegally sentenced to eight years of forced labor. She is being held at the Women's Prison in Jiuzhou Developing Zone, Lanzhou City, where she is forced to do slave labor.

Persecution at the Hualinshan No. 2 Detention Center in Gansu Province

Another six or seven practitioners were also persecuted. Practitioner Li Qiuxiang was tortured with "backward bending" for 40 days. She had to be carried to the restroom by inmates who climbed foot-high steps, and she had to be fed and helped to the toilet. Once, several inmates held her up and threw her on a sack of watermelon seeds, which left her with a dislocated arm that hasn't recovered a year later.

Practitioner Han Yuping from Minle County, Zhangye was tortured with "backward bending" for about a month. After the shackles were removed, she couldn't straighten her back and legs, so she had to walk hunched over and with bent knees. The muscles in her arms are as stiff as wood.

Persecution at the Gongjiawan Brainwashing Center

Gongjiawan Brainwashing Center is the persecution headquarters of the Lanzhou City "610 Office," now called Division 27 of the Lanzhou City Police Department. From late 2001 until now, more than 100 Falun Gong practitioners have been held here; their ages range from 12 to 70. In order to force the practitioners to give up their belief, the guards detained them in solitary confinement cells with one of their hands shackled to the upper rim of the door, so the practitioner's feet barely touch the ground. The practitioner is tortured this way for days and nights during which he is not allowed to go to the toilet or sleep. The perpetrators check the practitioners every five minutes. Some practitioners lost consciousness, some practitioners' entire body became extremely swollen, and some became incontinent. Usually people wear heavy coats to keep warm in October, but the guards at the brainwashing center don't allow the practitioners to wear the warm clothes sent by their families. They also lock determined practitioners in basements and cellars and beat them. Once, practitioner Niu Manqiu was handcuffed for more than a month and the flesh on his wrists festered. He was handcuffed several times, and was weak and emaciated from this mistreatment.