WASHINGTON, May 2 /Christian Wire Service/ -- Group is asking that all criminal charges against Dr. Wang be dropped. (See letter sent to President Bush, text of letter is also at end of this press release.)
Dr. Wang is facing six months in jail for protesting at a White House news conference with President Bush and Chinese President Hu Jintao.
The activists were arrested while praying for religious freedom and also repeating the phrases Dr. Wang called out at a White House news conference with President Bush and Chinese President Hu.
Those phrases include, "President Bush stop him ( President Hu ) from killing." And, "President Bush stop him from persecuting Falun Gong."
Organizers say if Dr. Wang is convicted it will dramatically increase persecution of Falun Gong in China, along with other religious groups, and send a worldwide message that the United States is not committed to protecting religious freedom.
Those who were arrested comment below.
Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, states, "Our hope and prayer is that President Bush will honor religious freedom and human rights and ask the Department of Justice to drop charges against Dr. Wang. These federal charges send a horrible message to the worldwide community concerning America's commitment to protecting religious freedom and liberties. Dr. Wang has not engaged in any criminal activity.
It is the government of China that has persecuted Falun Gong, and trampled religious rights for other faiths."
Katie Mahoney, Communications Director for the Christian Defense Coalition, comments, "I am willing to stand in solidarity with Dr. Wang and peacefully risk arrest to send a clear a message that our nation must do all within its power to protect religious freedom around the world. If Dr. Wang is convicted, it will embolden the Chinese government to intensify its attacks against Falun Gong and all other religious groups in China."
Brandi Swindell, National Director of Generation Life, declares, "As a nation we must do all within our power to ensure human rights are protected here in America and around the world. Dr. Wang is facing six months in jail for simply asking President Bush to help stop the killing of Falun Gong members and bringing a halt to religious persecution in China It would be tragic for Dr. Wang to go to prison for honoring human rights while Chinese President Hu received the red carpet treatment while in America."
Letter sent to President Bush, the following is the text of the same letter
The National Clergy Council
May 1, 2006
President George W. Bush
The Office of the President
1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, D.C., 20500
Dear President Bush:
The National Clergy Council, representing thousands of Catholic, Evangelical, Orthodox and Protestant Church leaders, together with the Christian Defense Coalition and its nation-wide network of grassroots activists, and GenLife, a new and dynamic national movement of young adults, urge you to intervene and drop charges against Falun Gong member Dr. Wenyi Wang.
Mr. President, with all due respect, this case calls for leniency. Dr. Wang had proper credentials to be located with media representatives; she is herself a member of this religious minority severely persecuted in China; and, her only offense was to interrupt a despot who embodies a repressive and even murderously corrupt regime.
Mr. President, surely you agree that the PRC regime has one of the worst track records of human rights violations of any government. Please take this into consideration and direct your counsel to drop the charges against Dr.
It is widely known that in most nonviolent demonstrations at the White House, protesters are simply detained by the Secret Service and released.
This situation is no different.
Mr. President, should Dr. Wang be convicted, even if the penalty is time-served, it will be exploited by the Beijing regime and lives will be lost in China, more innocent persons will suffer irreparably and the United States will be seen as bolstering the morally bankrupt leaders of the PRC and not the inalienable rights given every human being by the Creator.
Mr. President, this is a moral imperative. Please act swiftly to have the charges against Dr. Wang withdrawn.
We thank you in advance for your prayerful response.
On behalf of all good people on conscience, I am,
Very truly yours,
Rev. Rob Schenck