Zhengzhou City Prison Uses Isolation to Try to Force Falun Gong Practitioners to Renounce Their Faith
(Minghui.org) Since the persecution of Falun Gong began in 1999, Zhengzhou City Prison in Henan Province has been using various torture techniques on imprisoned Falun Gong practitioners. Isolation has been used as a major torture method in the prison's attempts to force practitioners to renounce their faith.
Strict Isolation Upon Arrival
Once practitioners arrived at the prison, they were first assigned to the Transformation Team, where practitioners were isolated in separate cells with three monitors watching them around the clock, be it during meal times, washing times or restroom breaks. The practitioners were warned against even exchanging glances with other practitioners.
After the initial pressure and intimidation, some monitors and prison guards would then play the “nice guy” and offer care to the practitioners. After they earned the practitioners' trust, they would then use soft tactics to coerce the practitioners into giving up their faith.
If the above tactics did not work, the guards would then escalate their “transformation” efforts to the next level. The practitioners would be forced to watch videos defaming Falun Gong, deprived of sleep or forced to sit on small stools for long periods of time, while being mocked and sworn at by other inmates.
To further shake practitioners' faith, the guards would then stir up the practitioners' families' misunderstanding of and resentment toward them. Some families members wanted to cut ties with them and some practitioners' spouses threatened to divorce them.
Even though it was difficult for practitioners, most of them withstood the pressure and held fast to their belief in Falun Gong.
Long-Term Strict Monitoring
For those who remained firm in their faith, the prison often put them under strict monitoring throughout their terms, even after they left the Transformation Team. They were only allowed to talk to the inmates assigned to monitor them, and their activities were limited.
Practitioner Hu Jianhua in the Second Division, sentenced to 10 years, was under strict monitoring all the time. The inmates who talked to him were punished, sometimes even beaten up.
Practitioners Bai Hongmin, Li Junqi, Zheng Jiaxin, Li Yuhang, Fu Kangchun were all placed under strict monitoring in the Ninth Division throughout their terms. There were more practitioners put under Strict Monitoring rooms for months.
Solitary confinement in a small cell was the most severe isolation torture in the prison. The cell was less than 100 square feet, with only a tiny stool in it. The door was made of iron bars, so the room was very cold in winter and full of mosquitoes and bugs in the summer.
Practitioners were only given a small steamed bun for each meal. The solitary confinement usually lasted from 7 to 15 days, but sometimes much longer. Mr. Mei Shengxin was kept in solitary confinement for a few years during his nine-year term. He was beaten up and brutally tortured. He was persecuted to death two days before his term expired.
Practitioners who gave up their belief under pressure and against their will were placed among other inmates, but were still monitored by inmates around them.
On the surface, these practitioners had the same routine as other inmates. But the inmates limited their contact with other practitioners and did not let them stay in the cells alone to prevent them from doing any Falun Gong exercises.