Persecution of Falun Gong Practitioners at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp in Changchun City - Part 2
II. Physical torture
The policy of Jiang and his cohorts to "destroy'' Falun Gong practitioners physically," is ruthlessly carried out at Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp. Over the past few years, the guards here have used insidious and perverted methods to persecute Falun Gong practitioners. Almost all the time, they order inmates, mostly thug-types, to torture the practitioners. I used to be shocked by movies about the Japanese army invading Chinese villages. We all felt that the Japanese soldiers were cold-blooded. I also used to be horrified by stories about Nazi Germans massacring innocent people; yet, at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp I experienced an evil perpetrated by the Chinese Communist Party which I believe is unprecedented in history. In fact the human language falls short of being able to convey the true nature of the CCP, a political party that uses lies, wickedness and violence to commit crimes.
Guards personally torture practitioners
The guards at the labor camp commit crimes without fear of legal repercussions. They curse and beat people at will. They often hit and kick Falun Gong practitioners, shock them with electric batons, hit them with wooden sticks and whip them with triangular belts or wooden boards. They hit people using anything within reach.
Every practitioner that entered the room as a healthy person needed help walking out. After the beatings, the guards locked some practitioners into water dungeons and poured cold water on them until the practitioners curled into balls, suffering from severe hypothermia. The sound of the torture tools hitting the practitioners' bodies, the demonic yelling of the guards and the tragic screaming of the practitioners put together is heart wrenching to hear. When the guards get tired, they order the inmates to beat the practitioners. Some inmates, upon seeing the scene, were afraid of killing the practitioners and dared not torture them further. Even those types of inmates with tattoos on their bodies and tough looks on their faces have said, "I've never seen anything like this; this is scaring me to death."
In late March 2002, several guards wanted to make an example of two practitioners. They called the two practitioners to the instruction room and tried to force them to write "breakaway announcements" to renounce Falun Gong. The practitioners refused. The guards slapped their faces, hit them with wooden sticks, shocked them with electric batons and whipped them with leather belts and triangular belts. Each practitioner was attacked by five guards and shocked by five electric batons. They didn't stop until the practitioners were covered with injuries and could hardly walk. In November 2003, guard Zou, who had been transferred over from Division 5, beat practitioner Fu Yan until he could not walk.
Instigating Inmates to Commit Violence
The guards promised the inmates sentence reductions to encourage them to torture Falun Gong practitioners. They told the inmates to do "whatever it takes" to make the practitioners give up their beliefs. The inmates beat the practitioners nearly to death; some practitioners were crippled from the torture, and some sustained internal injuries. Practitioner Li Ou from Division 5 lost consciousness after being savagely beaten in the spring of 2002, and his legs were disabled from the torture. The guards prompted the inmates to use spade handles to hit the practitioners. When practitioner Yang Shu was whacked with a spade handle he sustained a brain concussion and could not eat for many days. The wooden board on the bed was also used as a torture tool. Inmate Zhao Changle from Division 3 said, "If you validate Dafa and follow Truth-Compassion-Tolerance, I'll punish you by making you sit on a small stool." If the inmates were in a good mood, they made the practitioners sit in bed; if they were in a bad mood, they made the practitioners sit on a small stool.
The division head didn't feel ashamed when he said to the practitioners, "Soon I'll have the inmates beat you to death!" Some inmates screamed, "I hit you, so I'm a bad person and you are a good person; so a bad person is hitting a good person. Now look if the government will back me!" Some inmates declared, "I'm making your life a living hell."
The guards ordered two inmates to monitor each practitioner, including when the practitioner eats, sleeps, goes to the restroom and takes a shower. They would not allow the practitioners to talk. They deducted points from the practitioners, and each point means one more day at the labor camp. The points accumulated because the practitioners refused to cooperate with the perpetrators. The inmates were rewarded with sentence reductions for "reforming" the practitioners.
When practitioner Dong Wenqiang from a class in Group 2 held a hunger strike, guard Wang Hexing from Group 2 said, "The class head lacks management skills, which is why trouble arises in the class." As a result, class head Hou, nicknamed "electric cannonball," savagely beat Dong Wenqiang and forced him to eat in order to prove his "management skills" and to please his supervisor, guard Wang Hexing.
The guards operated outside the law, and so did the inmates. Inmate Zhang Fuli from Division 6 said many times to practitioner Yu Donghui, "Don't be stubborn! Just write the repentance statements; if the government orders me to beat you up, I won't care about your rights - I'll beat you up. I don't care if you are a good person. I want my reward! We get rewarded for reforming each practitioner, and for each point I earn I get a one day sentence reduction. You are talking about being a good person? Gamblers and drug addicts like us are good people; otherwise, why would we be allowed to watch you guys?" The guards often used Zhang Fuli to torture the practitioners.
The inmates often did not allow the practitioners to sleep or to drink water, and cursed and beat the practitioners if they made a slight mistake doing slave labor. Some practitioners developed scabies all over their bodies and were still forced to sleep on the floor. The practitioners were forced to mop the floor several times a day, and were beaten regardless of how well they worked.
At a meeting in March 2002, the head of the labor camp, surnamed Wang, said, "Inmates who help reform a Falun Gong practitioner will receive 35 points, which translates into a 35 day sentence reduction. During the months of 'Strict Control' the class heads will receive 20 points; the cell heads get 15 points. Class heads will receive 12 points, 10 points or 7 points for reforming a practitioner." As a result, physical and verbal abuse was taking place in all of the divisions. The inmates usually bare their upper body when they savagely beat the practitioners. Many of them have tattoos in the images of snakes, tigers, wolfs or leopards. They used all kinds of cruel methods and torture tools on determined practitioners, including forcing them to sit on narrow stools from 2:00 a.m. until midnight for many days at a time until pus seeped out of the practitioners' buttocks; then they forced practitioners to sit in the chilly wind and poured cold water on them. Many practitioners developed scabies on their bodies.
Perpetrators at the labor camp exhausted vicious methods to persecute Falun Gong practitioners and they held the practitioners beyond term to further torture them. Sometimes they held the practitioners for five months past their terms, while they released some inmates before term.
Long-term corporal punishment
There are many different kinds of corporal punishment. They may forbid the practitioners from sleeping 'or using the restroom, force them to sit on the cold concrete floor with their legs double-crossed, force practitioners to sit on small stools and/or force them to do heavy labor. Inmates in each division were encouraged by their guards to invent their own torture methods. Those who came up with extremely vicious methods earned points toward their term reduction. Practitioner Wang Tianming said, "Falun Dafa is great." Inmate Zhang Yu reported this to the guard and was praised, and practitioner Wang Tianming was brutally beaten.
In 2001, the persecution escalated in scale and severity. After the abducted practitioners were taken to the labor camp they were showered with punches and kicks. Practitioners who renounced their beliefs were allowed to sit by the wall. Determined practitioners were forced to sit in the front row and were not allowed the slightest movement. If they bent their head slightly, they would be brutally beaten, or the inmates responsible for monitoring them would "discipline" them. They were not allowed to speak a word from morning to night while the guards used the vilest language to either insult them or attack Falun Dafa.
One example shows the CCP's complete disregard for the law. The CCP allocated four million yuan to build a new building. Almost all of the "arrested" male Falun Gong practitioners in Jilin Province were sent there on January 18, 2002. There were approximately a dozen practitioners held in each division when they were in the old building; after the transfer was complete, there were about as many practitioners as inmates. The perpetrators also established Division 7, run by inmates, where they sent all former practitioners who gave up their beliefs. Determined practitioners were persecuted in different divisions, and those who returned to Falun Dafa after they gave it up were also sent to different divisions to be persecuted.
The "Harsh Attack"
There were three rounds of severe persecution in 2002, which the officials call the "Forced Reform Harsh Attack." On March 5, 2002, the perpetrators grew fanatic after some practitioners broadcast Falun Gong truth clarification videos over the local cable network. Luo Gan went to Changchun and expressed his dissatisfaction with the low "reform rate," and as a result another round of brutal persecution began. Determined practitioners at the Chaoyanggou Labor Camp were taken away and tortured for one hour, several hours or days at a time. When they came back they were bruised or deformed. Some were covered in bloody injuries, some could not walk and some were in a coma. The practitioners were placed under 24-hour surveillance and were not allowed to meet with their families.
The most determined practitioners were held in Division 2, where the most blood-chilling torture tools are located. On the morning of April 6, a group of practitioners were taken to the interrogation room and asked whether they would reform. No one answered. One practitioner was taken out and tortured with a spade, a crow bar, leather belts, steel-wire locks, bamboo sticks and bamboo planks. They cuffed the practitioners' arms and legs and four perpetrators would pull the practitioners' limbs in different directions while demanding whether they would reform. If the practitioners remained determined, they would further torture the practitioners. When the practitioners were covered in blood and their bodies deformed, the perpetrators would proceed to pour salt water on the practitioners and shock them with high-voltage electric batons. Their heart wrenching screams could be heard in the hallway.
During the first few days of April 2002, an earth-blanketing sand storm hit Changchun. Many people had never seen such a large-scale sand storm in their life. This happened during the height of the persecution of Falun Gong. After the sand storm the persecution again escalated at Chaoyang Labor Camp, a place shrouded in terror. I often saw healthy practitioners being carried out of the instruction room; during lunch I would see many practitioners with bandages on their heads, their arms in a cast, their hands and feet wrapped in gauze, and so on. Four practitioners from Division 5 were carried to lunch.
This time the perpetrators used varying sizes of electric batons, police batons, white plastic tubes, wooden sticks, metal tubes, and a whip made of steel wires and bamboo planks. The bamboo planks were broken during the beating, and pieces of sharp bamboo stuck in the practitioners' bodies. The perpetrators would then rub laundry detergent and salt into the wounds and pour cold water on the practitioners. They burned the practitioners' palms with fire, hung them up with their hands cuffed behind their backs and beat them.
On April 12, we couldn't see the sun because the sky was reddish yellow from the sand. Beginning from this day, the perpetrators started the so-called "Harsh Attack." At 9:00 a.m. Wang Yanwei, head of the labor camp, held a meeting and the divisions carried out the persecution.
The meeting ended at 9:30 a.m. At 9:40 a.m., beating and screaming filled the hallway, and all perpetrators participated in the torture. They took the practitioners to the instruction room, and about seven guards surrounded each practitioner. With spade handles or electric batons in their hands, the guards tried to force the practitioners to reform. Those who agreed were immediately sent back to their cell to write guarantee statements. As for determined practitioners, they would first beat and kick them, and if the practitioner stayed firm they would grab the practitioner's hair and bang his head against the wall or the concrete floor, or they would whack the practitioner with spade handles until the handle broke.
Some practitioners lost consciousness from the torture, and the guards would pour cold water on them. When they came to, the perpetrators would continue to threaten and intimidate them. Guard Jiang Chengcai stomped on the practitioners' toes and whipped the practitioners' heads, chests and backs with rubber clubs. Encouraged by group heads Zhu Dechun and Yu Tie, inmate Yu Changjiang beat the practitioners. About eight inmates beat practitioner Li for three days until he lost consciousness and could not move; he was also incontinent and lost sight in his right eye. At this point, the perpetrators were afraid of taking responsibility, so they were a little more self-restrained when beating the practitioners. However, they still forced determined practitioners to stand with their upper body bent forward and their hands raised above their backs. They also didn't allow the practitioners to sleep.
The first "Harsh Attack" lasted two months, during which time the practitioners were physically and mentally tortured. Some people gave up Dafa practice because they could not endure the ordeal, but more practitioners remained firm.
In June, another round of "Harsh Attack" began at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp. This time they assigned Gao, an official from the Administration Section, to take charge and lead the inmates and collaborators (former practitioners who have turned against Dafa), to debate with Falun Gong practitioners. They took advantage of the practitioners' loopholes and did everything possible to destroy their belief in Dafa. In the daytime, the guards forced the practitioners to watch Dafa-slandering videos. Before playing the videos, Gao would explain the content and ordered the practitioners to discuss the video after it was shown. The practitioners refuted his warped understanding and presented the righteous principles. Gao was furious and said, "If you don't reform, I'll lock you up! After I get off work, I go to a restaurant, but you'll still eat steamed buns and drink cabbage soup!" He ordered the collaborators to attack Dafa. The second "Harsh Attack" was more damaging than the first, in that the perpetrators twisted the content of Dafa and took advantage of the practitioners' lack of understanding of Dafa to destroy their beliefs.
In order to further the brainwashing the perpetrators formed a group consisting of 12 perpetrators led by Wang. They went to the different divisions to spread their twisted theories for five days. They asked Wang Zhigang, who had written two books to attack Dafa, to give a report and to brainwash Dafa practitioners, but their attempts ended in failure overall. They could not achieve the 95% reform rate after three months. The guards were exasperated because they would each have received 400 yuan a month if they had reached the reform rate.
In September 2002, the division heads went to a labor camp meeting and said they would achieve 100% reform of the practitioners at all costs. The third "Harsh Attack" started right after the meeting. The perpetrators first went after practitioners who returned to Dafa after they wrote a repentance statement. They locked the practitioners inside an office so that people could not hear the screaming. They locked all three doors so that the room was completely insulated. First, seven perpetrators stripped the practitioners naked and threatened the practitioners with electric batons and triangular belts in their hands. If the practitioners refused to give up Dafa, they would whip the practitioners all over their bodies, except the face, while at the same time shocking the practitioners' ears, head, neck, armpits, genitals and anus with electric batons.
They poured water on the floor, forced the practitioners to stand barefoot in the water, and shocked the practitioners until they fell on the floor. They continued to shock the practitioners until they rolled on the floor in pain. Then they hit the practitioners with spade handles. They broke many belts, electric batons and spade handles during their torture of Falun Gong practitioners. One practitioner shouted, "Falun Dafa is great!" They gagged the practitioner's mouth, cuffed his hands to a heating pipe and then whipped him. Some practitioners were hung up and beaten for three days. According to one practitioner who was later released, some guards killed one practitioner by repeatedly whacking him all over the body from head to feet with a thick wooden board.
Many practitioners stepped forward to stop the persecution. The practitioners shouted, "No beating!" When judicial officials came to the labor camp to inspect the work, the practitioners shouted, "I'm innocent. I ask for unconditional release!" Some practitioners went on a hunger strike to protest.
The third round of "Harsh Attack" lasted two months, until November, followed by the fourth round of "Harsh Attack." Each practitioner held at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp was tortured during the day and not allowed to sleep at night.
The perpetrators often forced detainees to do slave labor, such as work in a brick kiln, work in the fields, fold papers for pirated books, and dig ditches. Practitioners who were held at the labor camp earlier were persecuted this way. They were forced to work in the brick kiln in the heat of summer; they often became dehydrated. Practitioners who worked in the fields had to remove grass, shuck corn and pull radishes. Those who worked slowly often did not get a break or water.
Due to malnutrition and long-term torture, the work was not easy for the practitioners. The guards insulted or beat the practitioners if they were slow. A philosophy professor from Jilin University in his 50s was forced to dig ditches when he was running a high fever, only because he is a Falun Gong practitioner.
Poor living conditions
Sometimes the practitioners had radish soup or frozen cabbage for six months straight. People could smell frozen cabbage when they walked in the dining room. It is heard that the guards embezzled the food money.
Due to chronic malnutrition and poor hygiene, many practitioners contracted tuberculosis and scabies. The perpetrators limited or did not permit the practitioners to take a shower. As a result many practitioners died from scabies or tuberculosis due to the lack of medical treatment and torture. This is part of the evidence of the inhumane persecution at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp.
In October 2004, practitioner Song Wenhua from Tonghua City ran a high fever for several months and eventually lapsed into a coma. He could not eat or drink. The labor camp authorities did nothing and simply told Song Wenhua's family to take him home when he was at the brink of death. They also extorted 5,000 yuan from his family. Song Wenhua died several days after he was taken home. A practitioner from Yushu City contracted tuberculosis but was not given access to medical treatment. He was taken home when he had but one breath left and died a day later. Practitioner Liu Ziwei died three days after he was sent to the labor camp!
18 practitioners tortured to death
The Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp is a breeding ground for crime, despite its deceptive appearance of pink walls and green meadows. Again and again the labor camp authorities sent home practitioners tortured to the brink of death, claiming, "If they die outside the gate it's not our problem."
Case 1: Mr. Zhang Quanfu, 65 years old, was an employee of Jiangyuan County Forestry Bureau, Baishan City, Jilin Province. Since December 1999, he had been detained twice because he went to Beijing to appeal to the government to stop the persecution of Falun Gong. After he was released in January 2001, local policemen always harassed him at home. On the evening of March 6, 2002, he was arrested again and sent to Group 2, Division 6, of the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp, where he was detained and tortured for one year. During detention he suffered all kinds of torture and was also brutally beaten, even when he was near death'. His body was full of boils; he was extremely skinny and could not walk due to muscle atrophy. He had blood and pus in his stool, and his body was covered in scabies. He was beaten before he passed away on January 8, 2003. His son, Zhang Qifa, 38 years old, was also illegally held at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp. He was released on January 18, 2003. His body was covered with bruises and his skin was hard and black. His body was full of hard swellings and boils, and his legs hurt so much that he couldn't walk. He had difficulty breathing and couldn't speak clearly. He suffered from pain, itching and constipation. He passed away on January 19, 2003, the day after his release.
Case 2: Mr. Bai Xiaojun, 35 years old, was a professor at the Northeast Normal University in Jilin Province, and lived in Changchun, Jilin Province. On July 18, 2000, he went to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong and was abducted and illegally sentenced to one year of forced labor. He was sent to the Fenjin Forced Labor Camp in Changchun City where he suffered arm and leg injuries from beatings and developed severe scabies. He lost the ability to take care of himself. In April 2002 he was illegally sentenced to three years of forced labor and was sent to Division 4 of the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp. In early June 2003, he could not eat due to torture and was transferred to Division 1 in late June. Guard Zhao Jianping beat him in front of other Falun Gong practitioners in the division. He died on July 18, 2003.
Case 3: Mr. Liu Ziwei, 29 years old, from Baishan City, Jilin Province, was abducted and sent to the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp on December 10, 2004. He immediately went on a hunger strike. He was subjected to various inhumane tortures such as being locked up in a small cell, being force-fed, and being hung up on a wall with handcuffs, making his wrists bleed. He was hung up 24 hours a day and not allowed to sleep. The police also gagged Liu with dirty socks to prevent him from calling out. The perpetrators saw that he was dying at 11 p.m. on December 13 and sent him to a hospital. He died on the way to the hospital. He was murdered, and his bodily injuries are proof of that.
Since July 20, 1999, hundreds and even close to 1,000 Falun Gong practitioners were often held at the Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp. In the past six years, 18 practitioners were tortured to death here. They are: Zhang Quanfu (65 years, Baishan City, Jilin Province), Zhang Qifa (Baishan City, Jilin Province), Sui Futao (30 years, Liuhe County, Jilin Province), Bai Xiaojun (35 years, Changchun City, Jilin Province), Yue Kai (29 years, Yushu City, Jilin Province), Li Qiu (41 years, Changchun City, Jilin Province), Tian Junlong (45 years, Manchurian Autonomic County, Yitong, Jilin Province), Ding Yunde (55 years, Tonghua, Jilin Province), Zhen Yongping (Baishan City, Jilin Province), Xu Xijun (29 years, Changchun City, Jilin Province), Huang Baochen (65 years, Yushu City, Jilin Province), Yu Xianjiang (51 years, Changchun City, Jilin Province), Wang Jinian (28 or 29 years, Baishan City, Jilin Province), Li Chuanwen (54 years, Meihekou City, Jilin Province), Gao Chengji (52 years, Baishan City, Jilin Province), Zhang Shengqi (35 years, Baishan City, Jilin Province), Zhen Fuxiang (35 years, Yushu City, Jilin Province), Liu Yongqi (Baishan City, Jilin Province). The youngest of the practitioners was 26 years old, and the oldest was 65 years old.