Missouri Senate Passes Resolution Condemning Forced Organ Harvesting in China
(Minghui.org) With just one hour to go before the Missouri 2018 legislative session ended on May 18, the Missouri Senate unanimously voted to pass resolution SCR 28 condemning the atrocity of forced organ extractions from Falun Gong practitioners and other prisoners of conscience in China.
As the Missouri House of Representatives passed a similar resolution last year (HCR 7), the Senate resolution sends another strong message to the communist regime, demanding an end to the atrocities on behalf of concerned Missourians.
“Here in the state of Missouri, we cannot stand for these human rights violations,” said resolution sponsor State Senator Jill Schupp. “I’m proud to stand with you, and say to the People's Republic of China: Do not continue to persecute these [Falun Gong] practitioners. It is not ok to kill people in order to harvest their organs, even when Missourians need an organ transplant. No one wants to be able to survive because someone else is being killed for their organ.”
Senator Schupp also addressed the practitioners in China, saying,“I wish you all well, and want you to know that we here in the United States, and in the state of Missouri, care about you, and we are doing what we can to continue to bring information forward, about what you are surviving, and we wish you all well and hope we can end these abuses soon.”
Organ Transplant Industry Supported by Mass Killing
According to an independent investigation by human rights lawyers David Matas, David Kilgour and journalist Ethan Gutmann published in June 2016, China is performing 60,000 to 100,000 transplants each year. The number is shockingly high compared to the 25,000-30,000 transplants per year conducted in the U.S., which has a well-established donation system.
The Chinese government claims that these organs come from death row prisoners, but in fact, many prisoners’ organs aren’t suitable for transplantation, and the number of death row prisoners isn’t near large enough to support the huge transplant industry in China. In addition, the Chinese tradition of keeping the body intact after death has prevented voluntary organ donation in China.
According to the above-mentioned investigative report, the abundant, fresh organs for sale in Chinese hospitals come from living Falun Gong practitioners. And former dictator Jiang Zemin's directive to “eradicate Falun Gong” and “destroy them physically” is what paved the way for this heinous crime.
Worldwide Condemnation of a Crime Against Humanity
In recent years, as Falun Gong practitioners and human rights advocates have continuously exposed forced organ harvesting worldwide, many governments have expressed strong concern and condemnation of this crime. In the United States, in addition to the state of Missouri, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Georgia, Minnesota, Colorado, Maine, Delaware and Arizona have passed similar resolutions.
Missouri State Representative Lynn Morris, sponsor of HCR 7 last year, said, “This resolution is so important because of the persecution and the perpetration of illegal organ harvesting. We are trying to educate not only the United States and Missourians in the United States, we are trying to educate the world about what’s going on with people who practice Falun Gong in China. And all the things I think no one in this country would allow and endorse.”
Full Text of SCR28
SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 28
Whereas, extensive and credible reports have revealed mass killing of prisoners of conscience in the People's Republic of China, primarily practitioners of the spiritual based exercises of Falun Gong, but also other religious and ethnic minority groups, in order to obtain organs for transplants; and
Whereas, the organ transplantation system in China does not comply with the World Health Organization's Guiding Principles of traceability and transparency in organ procurement pathways, and the government of the People's Republic of China has resisted independent scrutiny of the system; and
Whereas, traditional Chinese custom requires bodies to be preserved intact after death. With rare voluntary organ donation, however, China's transplantation industry significantly increased since 2000; and
Whereas, the 2017 Freedom House Report "The Battle for China's Spirit" states that "Available evidence suggests that forced extraction of organs from Falun Gong detainees for sale in transplant operations has occurred on a large scale and may be continuing"; and
Whereas, an investigative report, published in June 2016, conducted by human rights attorney David Matas, former Canadian Secretary of State for Asia-Pacific David Kilgour, and journalist Ethan Gutmann, estimated that China is performing 60,000 to 100,000 transplants per year as opposed to 10,000 transplants claimed by the Chinese government, which is "an industrial-scale, state-directed organ transplantation system, controlled through national policies and funding, and implicating both the military and civilian healthcare systems"; and
Whereas, China's Liver Transplant Registry System indicated that more than 25% of cases were emergency transplants, for which an organ was found within days or even hours. Wait times for nonemergency liver transplants were usually quoted in weeks. Most patients in other countries have to wait years for a transplant; and
Whereas, the Chinese government claims that 90% of China's organ transplant sources come from executed prisoners. However, the number of executions has dropped 10% annually since 2002 and is far less than the number of transplants taking place. The government has never acknowledged the sourcing of organs from prisoners of conscience; and
Whereas, Falun Gong, a spiritual practice involving meditative "qigong" exercises and centered on the values of truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance, became immensely popular in China in the 1990s, with multiple estimates placing the number of practitioners at upwards of 70 million; and
Whereas, in July 1999, the Chinese Communist Party launched an intensive, nationwide persecution designed to eradicate the spiritual practice of Falun Gong, including physical and mental torture, reflecting the party's long-standing intolerance of large independent civil society groups; and
Whereas, since 1999, hundreds of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners have been detained extralegally in Chinese reeducation-through-labor camps, detention centers, and prisons, where torture, abuse, and implausible medical exams and blood tests on Falun Gong practitioners are routine; and
Whereas, Freedom House reported in 2015 that Falun Gong practitioners comprise the largest portion of prisoners of conscience in China, and face an elevated risk of dying or being killed in custody; and
Whereas, the United Nations Committee Against Torture and the Special Rapporteur on Torture have expressed concern over the allegations of organ harvesting from Falun Gong prisoners, and have called on the Government of the People's Republic of China to increase accountability and transparency in the organ transplant system and punish those responsible for abuses; and
Whereas, in June 2016, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed House Resolution 343, condemning the systematic, state-sanctioned organ harvesting from Falun Gong and other prisoners of conscience; and
Whereas, the killing of religious or political prisoners for the purpose of selling their organs for transplant is an egregious and intolerable violation of the fundamental right to live; and Whereas, organ tourism to China should not be shielded by medical confidentiality, but openly monitored. No nation should allow their citizens to go to China for organs until China has allowed a full investigation into organ harvesting of prisoners of conscience, both past and present:
Now Therefore Be It Resolved that the members of the Missouri Senate, Ninety-ninth General Assembly, Second Regular Session, the House of Representatives concurring therein:
(1) Call upon the Government of the People's Republic of China to immediately end the practice of organ harvesting from all prisoners and prisoners of conscience, and explicitly from Falun Gong prisoners of conscience and members of other religious and ethnic minority groups;
(2) Call upon the Government of the People's Republic of China to immediately end the 17-year persecution of the Falun Gong, and the immediate release of all Falun Gong practitioners and other prisoners of conscience;
(3) Call upon the President of the United States to undertake a full and transparent investigation by the United States Department of State into organ transplant practices in the People's Republic of China, and calls for the prosecution of those found to have engaged in such unethical practices;
(4) Encourage the medical community of Missouri to engage in educating colleagues and residents of Missouri about the risks of travel to China for organ transplants so as to help prevent Missouri residents from unwittingly becoming involved in murder in the form of forced organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience; and
(5) Agree to take measures to ban the entry of those who have participated in illegal removal of human tissues and organs, and seek prosecution of such individuals should they be found on the soil of Missouri; and
Be It Further Resolved that the Secretary of the Missouri Senate be instructed to prepare properly inscribed copies of this resolution for the President and Vice President of the United States, the President and Secretary of the United States Senate, the Speaker and Clerk of the United States House of Representatives, the chair of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, the chair of the House Committee on Foreign Relations, and each member of Missouri's Congressional delegation.