People from All Circles Condemn Deportation of Falun Gong Practitioners from South Korea (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) The Korean government recently deported three Chinese Falun Gong practitioners who had applied for asylum in Korea, and these incidents have drawn worldwide criticism. Mr. Willy Fautre, director of Human Rights without Borders, commented that the Korean government failed to fulfill its responsibility to protect refugee applicants, and that such deportations violate international laws and are not acceptable.
Mr. Willy Fautre, director of Human Rights without Borders
Mr. Fautre said that such deportations, similar to deporting North Korean refugees back to North Korea, are unacceptable as they send people back to China where they will face relentless persecution. In such cases, we know that they face brutal persecution, imprisonment, torture, and even death. For this reason, these people have the right to seek protection from the Korean government. Unfortunately, the government failed to fulfill its responsibility to protect them.
Reportedly, the Korean Justice Department rejected these Chinese Falun Gong practitioners' applications for asylum, claiming that they were not coordinators and thus would not be persecuted when they returned to China. Responding to this statement, Mr. Fautre said that one doesn't have to be a renowned rights activist or leader to obtain asylum status. The Seoul government used a bad excuse because any persecuted individual has the right to be protected by foreign governments if they are facing the risk of arbitrary arrest and imprisonment.
Reportedly, the deportation was the result of pressure from the Chinese Communist regime. Mr. Fautre was not surprised by this allegation and said that Chinese Embassies always call organizers and pressure them to cancel events for the Dalai Lama when he visits European countries.
David Kilgour, former Canadian Member of Parliament and Secretary of State, was shocked to learn about the deportations.
David Kilgour, former Canadian Member of Parliament and Secretary of State
Mr. Kilgour said that the deportations are a serious issue as he believes that the Korean Government had seen his report on organ harvesting and he had briefed Korean media and parliament members about the atrocities. "They should know very well that these practitioners should not be deported back to China as they could be persecuted."
Mr. Kilgour is concerned about all religious persecution and he hopes that Korean people will not go to China for organ transplants, as organs in China are often taken from detained Falun Gong practitioners.
In 2007, David Kilgour and renowned human rights lawyer David Matas published an independent report entitled "Bloody Harvest." http://organharvestinvestigation.net/
After a thorough investigation, the report concluded that organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners is happening in China.
Mr. Ping-de Zhou, former Taiwanese presidential adviser, urged the Korean Government to respect human rights and international laws and grant Chinese Falun Gong practitioners in Korea asylum status. He also urged the international community and human rights organizations to launch immediate efforts to rescue other practitioners in Korea who are facing deportation.
Mr. Ping-de Zhou (left), former presidential adviser
In July, Korean Authorities deported three Chinese Falun Gong practitioners in two separate actions. Currently, two more practitioners face immediate deportation. In addition, 31 other practitioners are on a deportation list and over 100 other practitioners could soon face the same danger.
After learning about this news, Mr. Zhou said that he was very sad and puzzled. "The Korean government used to advocate for freedom and democracy and respect human rights. I cannot believe that it could deport Falun Gong practitioners. The whole world knows about the poor human rights record of the Chinese Communist regime and the brutal persecution of Falun Gong. Practitioners fled to democratic Korea to escape persecution and seek international protection."
Mr. Zhou has many friends and relatives who are Falun Gong practitioners. "They are very good people and I respect them. The persecution is inhumane and I hope the international community and human rights groups will take immediate action to rescue them. I also hope the Korean government will protect Chinese practitioners in Korea.
Falun Gong practitioners around the world have been holding activities outside Korean embassies and consulates to appeal for the Chinese practitioners in Korea.