(Minghui.org) On December 19, a senate hearing was held in the Italian Parliament on the issue of forced organ harvesting of prisoners of conscience in China. David Matas, well-known Canadian human rights lawyer, made a presentation at the hearing, urging Italy to revise its laws in order to keep the country from becoming an accomplice to the crimes of forced organ harvesting in China.
Adnkronos Salute , a major Italian news outlet, published three articles covering the story.
According to the Adnkronos Salute report, the European Parliament passed a resolution on December 12 condemning the Chinese regime's organ harvesting of prisoners of conscience, the majority of whom are Falun Gong practitioners. The publication also reported on the petition bearing 1.5 million signatures collected from all over the world, calling for an end of the organ harvesting atrocities. The petition was submitted to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
On the same day of Matas' address in Parliament, the documentary film, Free China: The Courage to Believe , about Falun Gong practitioners' peaceful resistance to the persecution in China, was screened in the Sala delle Colonne di Palazzo Marini, in the Parliament building.
Working with David Kilgour, former Canadian Secretary of State (Asia-Pacific), David Matas has collected numerous pieces of evidence verifying the allegations of forced organ harvesting in China, especially the state-sanctioned harvesting from persecuted Falun Gong practitioners. The evidence has been written up in two books: Bloody Harvest: The Killing of Falun Gong for Their Organs , and State Organs: Transplant Abuse in China .
At the parliamentary hearing, Mr. Matas stated that the purpose of his trip to Italy is to push Italian lawmakers to revise laws against “transplant tourism,” to discourage Italian citizens from going overseas for illegal organ transplant surgeries.
Matas believes that this is a global issue, involving the international community. He said that patients who travel to China for organ transplants need to be monitored by their governments, and the sources of organs need to be made openly known to the public.
Mr. Matas called upon doctors not to encourage their patients to go abroad for organ transplants, and not to offer training to doctors affiliated with organizations or individuals involved in the illegal organ market.
Mr. Matas believes that a number of thing can be done to help. For example, the medical community should not allow the publication of papers from professionals involved in the illegal organ business, and Chinese doctors should not be allowed to participate in international science conferences, if they cannot explain where and how they conducted their research in organ transplantation surgeries.
Adnkronos Salute 's interview with Mr. Matas will be aired on the program “Doctors' Life” on Sky TV station in January 2014.