Update on Lawsuit Filed Against Jiang: The Conference Between the Attorney for the Plaintiffs and the Judge Concludes Smoothly
(Clearwisdom.net Special Report) On January 13, 2003, a scheduling conference and notice of motion hearing was held in the United States District Court of the Northern District of Illinois in the lawsuit filed against Jiang Zemin by persecuted Falun Gong practitioners. Both the conference and the hearing went well and concluded well before noon. Counsel for the plaintiffs requested 60 days to prepare materials for trial. This and other requests by plaintiffs were granted.
The lawsuit against Jiang Zemin and Office 6/10 was filed in October of 2002, by seven named Falun Gong practitioners, on behalf of themselves and on behalf of a larger class, for crimes against humanity, torture, improper execution and death, and genocide. The lawsuit encapsulates the systematic persecution of all persons who embrace the spiritual tenets of Falun Gong in China. The Plaintiffs have jurisdiction over Jiang Zemin, notwithstanding his status as head of state because international law, and especially the Convention Against Genocide exempt from head of state immunity those acts that constitute genocide.
The People's Republic of China ratified the Genocide Convention on April 18, 1983. As a signatory to the Convention, they are obliged to abide by its tenets. Notwithstanding their ratification of the Genocide Convention, their President, the Office 6/10 and other high ranking government and Communist party officials have been committing acts of genocide and substantial violations of the Convention in connection with the campaign of persecution and repression they have waged against practitioners of Falun Gong since 1999. The death toll is exceedingly high, and probably higher than even the reports of improper death on the Falun Gong websites since many the reports of many deaths have been blocked by the government of China's Internet blockade. Brutal torture is also commonplace, including subjecting practitioners to electric shocks, water dungeons and sleep deprivation; branding and burning them; exposing them to the heat and cold for long periods of time; forcing them to perform heavy physical labor; and other forms of torture such as the tiger bench, where practitioners are forced to sit motionless on a tiny stool just inches off the ground. There have been countless such victims. Furthermore, the Jiang regime has sent large numbers of perfectly healthy practitioners to mental hospitals, injecting them with mind-altering drugs and causing severe psychological damage. The above acts clearly violate the Convention Against Genocide's prohibitions.
As defined by the Convention Against Genocide, "genocide includes, but is not limited to, the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: Killing members of the group; Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part."
Reliable third party reports substantiate these claims. The United States Department of State Annual Report on International Religious Freedom for 2001 confirms that over 200 deaths of Falun Gong practitioners have occurred as a result of torture inflicted while in detention and subject to the authority of government officials. In the United States Government Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, and most especially in its Annual Reports on International Religious Freedom, as well as in reports issued by non-government human rights monitoring groups such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, we are told that the major human rights abuses and violations being committed against Falun Gong practitioners is an effort to eliminate them and totally eradicate the presence of Falun Gong in China. Most recently, Dangerous Minds: Political Psychiatry in China Today, a report issued by Human Rights Watch and the Geneva Institute on Psychiatry in August 2002, found that "large numbers of the group's detained practitioners were forcibly sent to mental hospitals by the security authorities," and documents their treatment as including being subjected to use of inappropriate drugs, being physically restrained for long periods in hospital beds and in dark hospital rooms, and being subjected to electroconvulsive, brainwashing, and other painful forms of treatment.
All of these actions and other similar types of highly abusive treatment have been conducted since 1999 as part of a systematic campaign, instituted by President Jiang and the Office 6/10, to suppress and eliminate Falun Gong as a spiritual practice in China; and to punish and intimidate practitioners of Falun Gong specifically for their spiritual practices and beliefs
In so doing, the Jiang regime has exhausted huge resources and spared no means in strictly blockading information both in and out of China. While doing everything possible to keep information about the persecution from being exposed, the Jiang regime is claiming now to be the "best period for human rights in China," putting up a facade deceive the public. The regime has intensified its efforts to arrest, torture, defame, and imprison those Falun Gong practitioners who have courageously exposed and publicized the truth about the persecution.