(Clearwisdom.net) According to incomplete statistics compiled by the Minghui website, over the past ten years the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has apportioned an enormous amount of money to local governments around the country to set up brainwashing facilities to “reform” Falun Gong practitioners.
Tens of thousands of practitioners are still held in brainwashing centers. The year 2010 alone saw 2,038 practitioners arrested in 28 provinces, direct-controlled municipalities and autonomous regions. More than half of those arrested were sent to brainwashing centers. The provinces of Heilongjiang, Hebei, Hubei, Shandong, Liaoning, Jilin, Sichuan, as well as the city of Chongqing have each had more than one hundred practitioners arrested and detained. These figures only account for the cases that have been reported on the Minghui website. It is reasonable to suggest that the actual number of arrests is far higher.
Langfang City Legal Education Center in Hebei.
Acting like the Mafia
Domestic Security Divisions all over the country have the responsibility of arresting practitioners and sending them to brainwashing centers. They are also responsible for directly transferring practitioners, whose forced labor terms have just expired, to brainwashing centers.
Agents from the 610 Offices arrest practitioners without any legal procedures, and the police often arrest practitioners at will. Guards at brainwashing centers are not law enforcement professionals, yet they possess excessive powers to abuse practitioners without facing any legal consequences. None of them follow legal procedures, nor do they inform any family members of the arrest. This is how many practitioners suddenly just disappeared, with no knowledge of their whereabouts.
“Carrot and Stick” approach
Practitioners sent to brainwashing centers are first put in solitary confinement, with two “helpers” assigned to monitor each practitioner around the clock. The practitioner cannot step outside the room or practice the exercises. The helpers force him to watch or listen to materials slandering Falun Gong every day, and then they have write down their thoughts. Once in a while, specially trained people are brought in to further bombard them with lies and propaganda.
Practitioners are subjected to all kinds of physical torture. At Hubei Brainwashing Center practitioners who go on a hunger strike to protest the persecution are force-fed and shocked with electric batons.
When the guards fail to make practitioners renounce their belief through torture, they resort to softer tactics. The guards pretend to care about the practitioners’ health and family, and promise to help improve their financial conditions if they agree to stop practicing. Guards at Deyang Brainwashing Center in Sichuan filmed Mr. Hou Guangtao, an elderly practitioner, as they told him, “We’ll build you a new house, buy you new furniture and apply for social security benefits on your behalf if you cooperate with us.” Mr. Hou refused to say anything.
In order to make practitioners give up their belief, many brainwashing centers order their family members to exert pressure on them. Mr. Lu Songming, a practitioner from Huangshi City in Hubei, was taken to the Banqiao Brainwashing Center in Wuhan City on October 25, 2010. Mr. Lu was constantly tortured and deprived of food and sleep. As the guards could not get him to renounce his belief, they turned to Mr. Lu's family to help them. They first brought in his daughter, who knelt down in front of him and pleaded for him to stop practicing. His wife was then ordered to write to him, threatening a divorce. Despite all these dirty tricks, Mr. Lu was determined never to give up his belief.
Funding of brainwashing centers
The brainwashing centers are mainly financed through appropriations from the central government. Some centers also extract money from local governments, as well as practitioners' workplaces and families.
In November 2010, Zhang Junqi, head of the 610 Office and Political and Legal Committee Secretary in Fenxi County, Shanxi Province, and Tian Junping, Fenxi Police Department Political Security chief, arrested ten practitioners and took them to the Yangguang Hotel to hold a brainwashing session. The central government designated 10,000 yuan to each high level official for holding these sessions.
The 610 Office and Political and Legal Committee in Deyang City, Sichuan held a brainwashing session at the Baotancun Elementary School in June 2010. A college professor, Mr. Hu, was paid to fabricate slanderous materials. He told practitioners, “We have more than enough money to reform you. This time we brought in several million yuan.” This brainwashing center also demanded the local government pay 5,000 yuan for each practitioner who stopped practicing.
Some state-owned companies misuse designated funds to support the 610 Offices. In 2010, the Daqing Petroleum Company 610 Office paid the Heilongjiang Wuchang Brainwashing Center to have them “reform” their employees who are practitioners. Each practitioner’s family was ordered to pay 10,000 yuan.
Brainwashing centers are set up at every regional level. For instance, in Chengdu City, Sichuan, in addition to the city-level Xinjin Brainwashing Center, almost every district in Chengdu has its own brainwashing facility. Some brainwashing centers are set up temporarily to persecute a certain amount of practitioners, while others are part of a regular government department. Hubei Brainwashing Center, a.k.a. Legal Education Center, has been long-standing and belongs to the 610 Office. It is in operation all year long, and practitioners who refuse to renounce their belief are held there indefinitely.
Who is persecuted?
Those sent to brainwashing centers come from all kinds of backgrounds and cover the whole social spectrum, but have one thing in common - they all follow the teachings of Falun Gong. Below are a few examples:
Ms. Xu Yourong, a lecturer at the Jincheng Foreign Language School in Chengdu, has been detained in Jinhua Brainwashing Center in the Wuhou District since her arrest in August 2007.
Ms. Yu Xiaoyan, an associate professor at the Zhongshan Medical School in Dalian City, Liaoning, was arrested and sent to the Fushun Brainwashing Center in July 2010. She was released twenty days later.
Ms. Yuan Pingjun lived in the apartment complex for the Telecommunication Company located on Gexin Street, Xinhua District, Shijiazhuang City, Hebei. While she was at work on August 2, 2010, Huang, head of the Street Committee, and a group of officers from Ninganlu Police Station broke in and arrested her. When her husband returned home later that morning, he saw that the police were still ransacking their home. They then ordered her husband to pay 550 yuan for his wife’s living expenses at the brainwashing center, located in the 6411 Hotel on South Bailin Road. On the morning of August 12, 2010, agents from the 610 Office told him that Ms. Yuan suddenly died that morning.
Ms. Li Furong, in her 50s, was a farmer from Lilou Village, Yushan Township, Jinxiang County in Shandong. Just a few days after she was sent to Jinan Brainwashing Center in November 2010, her uterus started hemorrhaging.
Mr. Liao Yonghui, a retired employee from the Sichuan Antiques Bureau, was brutally tortured during his ten-month detention at Jinhua Brainwashing Center in Chengdu. He had frequent heart problems and died at age 70, not long after his release.