Prison Tortures Falun Gong Practitioners with 24-Hour Squatting, Doused with Freezing Cold Water, Sleep Deprivation and More
(Minghui.org) A Shenyang City, Liaoning Province resident was subjected to various forms of torture while serving a three-year term for her faith in Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Li Yongmei was arrested in July 2014. Police officers raided her apartment and took away her computer, printer, Falun Gong books, and other personal belongings. She was incarcerated in Liaoning Province Women's Prison from November 20, 2015 to July 16, 2017.
Because she refused to renounce her faith, the guards forced her to do extended periods of squatting and standing, poured freezing cold water on her in the winter, deprived her of sleep and food, and forced her to do unpaid labor.
Sleeping on a Bare Bed Board
Ms. Li was assigned to Team 5 in the 7th ward in the prison. The team head sent two female prisoners, Diao Lili and Li Yunxia, to monitor her for 24 hours a day. They demanded that Ms. Li admit her guilt, but she refused to comply. The two prisoners forced her to stand from morning till night for several consecutive days. They also took away her toilet paper, toothpaste, and other daily necessities, and prohibited her from changing clothes. She was made to sleep on a bare bed board at night with no blankets.
Standing and Squatting for Extended Periods of Time
The prison guards punished practitioners by forcing them to stand inside the prison warehouse all day long, and called it a “study session.”
Many Falun Gong practitioners had been made to stand there for several consecutive days, and their hands and feet were swollen. After standing for several days in a row, Ms. Li's feet were so swollen that her slippers burst apart. Then the guards forced her to squat down without shoes from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. When 12-hour squatting still would not make her give in, the guards extended the duration from 12 hours to 15 hours, and eventually to 24 hours a day without giving her any time off.
Prisoners Diao Lili and Li Yunxia opened the cell window in winter, and took Ms. Li's winter clothes away to freeze her. In addition, they poured freezing cold water on her and her coat. None of the torture could coerce Ms. Li into renouncing her faith.
Sleep and Food Deprivation
Diao Lili and Li Yunxia did not give Ms. Li all her meals, and sometimes only gave her one meal a day. They claimed that with a full stomach, Ms. Li would have more energy to resist the persecution. When the around-the-clock monitoring exhausted the two prisoners, they asked other prisoners to help them keep Ms. Li up for more than 20 hours a day while they rested.
Team 5 had a garment factory which operated an assembly line. Prisoners were each assigned a daily quota that they must finish regardless how late it was. They worked from seven in the morning till late at night, and only rested one day a week. During peak seasons, however, they were made to work 7 days a week for several weeks in a row without any day off.