David Matas and David Kilgour Request the Office of the Chief Executive of Hong Kong to Reverse Shen Yun Visa Decision
(Clearwisdom.net) On January 26, the authors of Bloody Harvest - The killing of Falun Gong for their organs, Mr. David Matas and Mr. David Kilgour wrote to the Office of the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, asking him to reverse the decision to deny entry visas to key production staff for Shen Yun Performing Arts. The following is the letter:
Mr Donald Tsang
Office of the Chief Executive
Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
People's Republic of China
Government House, Hong Kong
We request that you reverse the decision to deny entry visas to key production staff for the Shen Yun Performing Arts. I, David Matas, am an international human rights lawyer based in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada. I, David Kilgour, am a retired Parliamentarian and a former Minister of State for Asia and the Pacific.
The Shen Yun shows were scheduled to play at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts Lyric Theatre January 27-31. On January 21, the Hong Kong Immigration Department refused to give seven of the company's production team members entry visas. The reason given by Hong Kong immigration was that these production jobs could be filled locally.
The production members denied visas were an integral part of the production. The production staff were trained in Shen Yun's technical, detailed artistic requirements. They could not be replaced and the show could not go on without them.
Although the visas were applied for on October 13, 2009, the denials came only three days before departure. The company was forced to cancel the shows.
We are aware that the Chinese communist regime has been seeking to interfere with performances of the company for years by trying to pressure officials and theatres to cancel their shows. The visa denials were, in our view, the result of an attempt to cater to the wishes of this regime.
The Hong Kong people have been denied their right to see Shen Yun Performing Arts. This incident constitutes a violation of Hong Kong people's freedom in an attempt to please the Communist regime of China. The visa denials throw into question the promise of one country two systems, which in principle forms the basis of the Hong Kong status in China.
Even though the shows have been cancelled, the reversal of the visa office decisions would allow their rescheduling. In order to reassert the promise of one country two systems, which these visa denials flout, and respect the freedom of the people of Hong Kong, which these visa denials violate, you should reverse these denials.