(Minghui.org) In June 2002 when Ms. Ding Liyan was released from Hexi Detention Center, her family took her straight to a hospital for emergency treatment.
When her family came for her, Ms. Ding had already been in a coma for weeks. Many people were sure that she was already dead, because they knew she had been brutally tortured and force-fed. Labor camp authorities would usually only allow practitioners to go home when it was obvious they would not survive – thus, the practitioner would die outside of the labor camp and they could avoid being held responsible.
However, Ms. Ding was not dead. She had been in a coma for more than a month. Through studying the Fa and doing the exercises, she was able to stand again four months later.
Ms. Ding was an excellent worker at the Tongliao Power Plant in Inner Mongolia. She started to practice Falun Gong in 1997. She followed the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and was well-regarded at the factory. However, the persecution of Falun Gong nearly ended her life.
What follows is an account of her ordeal.
When the CCP started to persecute Falun Gong in July 1999, Bao Yintu, Party head of the maintenance branch of Tongliao Power Plant, repeatedly demanded that Ms. Ding write a statement to give up practicing Falun Gong.
Ms. Ding's husband, Chen Aimin, was an official in the power plant whose job was to study communist party theory. He was deeply influenced by the CCP propaganda and was afraid that his career would be affected by his wife. He tried hard to prevent Ms. Ding from practicing Falun Gong. He even beat her. He promised the power plant leaders that he would make her give up Falun Gong. He took a long leave from his job and stayed at home to watch her and make sure she wasn't practicing. He forced her to stay home with him.
When Chen Aimin had to go back to work two weeks later, he contacted Ms. Ding's mother in her hometown in Naimanqi and told her to come and watch her daughter. He deceived his mother-in-law, saying, “You need to watch her, or she'll run away if I go back to work.” Ms. Ding's mother stayed for about three weeks and then wanted to go home. He told his mother-in-law to take her daughter with her. Ms. Ding's mother didn't want to make trouble for her daughter and refused.
However, in order to force his wife to give up Falun Gong, Chen Aimin persuaded his brother-in-law, whose mind had also been poisoned by the CCP propaganda against Falun Gong, to help him. They decided to send Ms. Ding to the Shijiazhuang Brainwashing Center in Hebei Province. On August 2, 2001, Ms. Ding was sent to this notorious brainwashing center by her husband and brother. The fee for this brainwashing center was 16,000 yuan for a local practitioner and 20,000 yuan for a non-local one. Chen paid 20,000 yuan out of his own pocket.
The brainwashing center requires that two people stay with a practitioner to assist with the process. Chen and his brother-in-law hired two people to watch Ms. Ding and make sure she wasn't doing the exercises. Two days later staff members Kong Fanyun and Yuan Shutian divided eight persons into two groups. They took turns, about two hours each, to make sure Ms. Ding did not talk or sleep for 24 hours a day. If she closed even one eye, they would wake her up and force her to stand up to prevent her from sleeping. They took turns reading books that slandered Dafa to her. For nine days and ten nights, Ms. Ding was unable to sleep. They also did not let her go to the restroom. However, all this was in vain, as Ms. Ding remained steadfast.
When the “hard” way didn't work, the brainwashing center staff started using the “soft way.” They pretended to be friendly by caring for Ms. Ding and being considerate of her. She was surrounded by at least five or six people at all times. Deprived of sleep for several days and nights, she could no longer think clearly and was deceived into signing a statement to give up Falun Gong.
Then she was sent to a “study class” for eight-hour long classes every day on the “glorious” CCP's history, laws, etc. At night, she had to write “thought reports” praising the Party and slandering Dafa. One would be punished if the writing was not up to a certain standard. Ms. Ding endured three months of brainwashing and returned home on November 2, 2001.
Her husband, Chen Aimin, sent her to her hometown after she got out of the brainwashing center. One day, Ms. Ding came across one of Master's articles and regretted losing the precious opportunity to practice. When Chen learned that she was practicing Falun Gong again, he divorced her in February 2002.
Ms. Ding stayed in her hometown after the divorce. She realized that she should not hide at home doing nothing while the CCP was persecuting Falun Gong, so she returned to Tongliao City. She stayed at Liaohe Hotel. During the day, she read Dafa books and wrote posters and banners, and at night she went out to post them.
On February 7, 2002, Ms. Ding took a train to Beijing. She had a big banner reading “Falun Dafa is great” with her, which she made herself.
Next morning, she went to Tiananmen Square. Just as she was about to unfurl the banner, five police officers jumped out of a van and pulled her into it. She was first detained in a big metal cage in Qianmen Police Station. That night, she was taken by people from Tongliao liaison office in Beijing. The next day, four officers from Ke District Domestic Division of Tongliao City, including Shao Jun, Wang Po, a female officer, and the driver, took her to the Hexi Detention Center in Tongliao.
-Placed in the “pig's cuff ” torture device for six days
On February 17, 2002, because Ms. Ding did the exercises in the cell, she had to wear a restraint known as the "pig's cuff," which weighed more than 20 lbs. This torture device involved cuffing a person's hands and legs together with chains and rings so the person has to stay in a curled over position and isn't able to stand, walk, sleep, eat, or use the toilet. Ms. Ding was restrained like this for six days.
-“Carrying a board on the back”
In mid-April 2002, two practitioners, Ms. Tian Miao and Ms. Lan Guiqi, were sentenced to prison. When the guards tried to take them to Baoanzhao Prison, the two practitioners refused to cooperate. The guards then directed more than ten prisoners to put the "pig's cuffs" on them. Ms. Ding bravely stood up for her fellow practitioners and shouted to the guards, "It's a crime to persecute Dafa practitioners! Falun Dafa is great!" The guards were very upset and used the most violent and brutal torture method, "carrying a board on the back," to punish her.
This torture uses chains to bind a person's hands and legs to a metal cross. It's worse than the "pig's cuff" because a person cannot move at all on the iron cross and is not released even to go to the bathroom. Not wanting to bother others to help her, Ms. Ding did not eat or drink. She fainted many times and was forced to soil herself. Others in the cell had to change and wash her. She lost so much weight that on the sixth day, her hand slid right out of the handcuffs that used to be very tight on her wrists. Guard Mo Rigen finally released her on the afternoon of the seventh day.
Ms. Ding had written more than 20 letters to appeal to the authorities but heard nothing back. She decided to go on a hunger strike on April 27, 2002. On the seventh day of the hunger strike, she was so weak that she couldn't get up. Guard Mo Rigen directed inmates to force-feed her. While the inmates held Ms. Ding, Mo Rigen seized her mouth with her hands and tried to squeeze a plastic water bottle into it to force the liquid in. When Ms. Ding struggled to close her mouth, Mo Rigen pried her mouth open with a screwdriver. One of Ms. Ding's front teeth was broken in half after being subjected to force-feeding several times. In the end, Mo Rigen gave up. At that time, Ms. Ding had suffered so much that she was unable to speak and lapsed into a coma.
Mo Rigen ordered the inmates to take turns watching her in case she died.
-Released only after the guards thought she was dying
Ms. Ding went on a hunger strike for 35 days, from April 27 to June 1, 2002. Her mother got a call from the detention center on June 18: “Come pick up your daughter. She is dying. If you don't come, we'll throw her corpse in the trash.” Ms. Ding's brother-in-law and her sister came to pick her up the next day and took her directly to a hospital. The doctor inserted a catheter, otherwise her bladder would have been permanently injured. She stayed in the hospital for more than 10 days and was in a coma the entire time. The doctor didn't know how to treat her and released her. She was still in a coma when they took her home.
Her family hired a nurse to care for her and she was on an IV drip every day to keep her alive. She went in and out of consciousness and sometimes talked. Twenty days later, she opened her eyes. Although she was still very weak, her mind was clear. She realized she should not stay in a coma because she came to this world to cultivate. Gradually she was able to sit up, sit in a wheelchair, walk slowly while holding onto a chair, walk using the wall. In time, she could take care of most of her basic needs by herself.
In August 2002, it was just about to rain but there were bed covers and clean clothes hanging outside. Ms. Ding was alone at home. Seeing the dark sky, she walked out the door for the first time and took all the clothes in just in time before the rain started. Her family were amazed at her improvement.
In September, her colleague, Li Yong, called her and asked for her health insurance identification card. She told him, “My ID was in the detention center. Can you help get it back?” When Li Yong went to the detention center, the guards were all surprised and said. “Is she still alive? We thought she was dead.”
Hearing she was recovering, the local police and the officers from Tongliao City 610 Office collaborated to check on her. They often called her brother-in-law to ask about her. When she was able to walk, the police came to harass her.
In January 2006, local police officer Bai Yila and four other officers from Naimanqi Police Department went to ask her, “Do you still practice Falun Gong? We want to talk about it. What do you think?” Ms. Ding told them, “Enough is enough! Haven't you done enough to me? Without Falun Gong, I would be long dead after what you did to me. What do I think? I advise you all to stop doing evil and stop persecuting good people. Falun Gong teaches people to be good and to raise society's moral standards by our good behavior. It's a righteous great law with mighty virtue. Now you go back and think about it and give it a try!” Chastised, they left.
Despite the fact that Ms. Ding was persecuted nearly to death, the authorities still won't stop harassing her. During major holidays, officer Bai Yila comes to check up on her or goes to the neighbor to ask about her.