(Clearwisdom.net) On December 12, 1986, China signed the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, which was passed by the UN in 1984, and affirmed by the Convention on October 4, 1988.

On November 7, 2008, the United Nations Committee Against Torture questioned China on their adherence to the UN Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. China's ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, Li Baodong, made his reply clear by saying, "China has zero tolerance for torture." On November 22, Qin Gang, spokesperson for China's Foreign Ministry, claimed while being questioned at a press conference, "China respects and protects human rights, has always opposed torture and has conscientiously carried out her obligations under the Anti-Torture Convention. China has made great efforts against torture and achieved remarkable progress on human rights."

After reading the two representatives' elegant remarks, in my mind I could once again hear the heart-wrenching screams. I was vividly able to recall two incidents I witnessed a few years ago, that clearly demonstrated that the Communist regime hadn't made these "great efforts" against torture and hadn't achieved this "remarkable progress" on human rights. On the contrary, the regime's great and remarkable efforts have been focused on using torture, and it has striven to make remarkable achievements in this area.

Around 2000, I was unlawfully arrested by the local police for clarifying the facts about the persecution of Falun Gong and was locked up in a room. At around midnight, everything became quiet, and there was only myself and a guard left in the room. When I was just about to fall asleep, suddenly I heard a heated argument taking place in a distant office. I heard a middle-aged male voice shouting, "I did not come to gamble! I did not come to gamble! You've made a mistake arresting me..." Then I heard a cold voice shouting back at him, "Stop shouting! What are you shouting about?!" The argument went on for a few minutes. The first male voice became even louder and more emotional, and the voice that was reprehending him remained surprisingly cold. However, a little while later, this voice became fierce and I heard him threatening, "So you are still shouting? Let's hear you shout then." Then I heard sounds of struggling, and then there were sounds of beating and whipping, mixed with heart-wrenching screams that became louder and shriller. I heard the perpetrators yelling out viciously, "Come on, now shout, let's see if you can still shout!" The sounds of beating and screaming sent shivers down my spine, in the otherwise quiet night. Gradually, the screams became weaker and weaker, until finally there was no sound left and at last all became quiet again.

The next day, the guard told me what happened. It turned out that the night before, the police had raided a hotel to arrest gamblers. One of them was the manager of a local real estate company. When the arrest was taking place, the man who shouted was innocent and had simply knocked at the door, but he was arrested as well. In fact, he had not come to gamble at all, but had come to pay for the property he purchased from the real estate company. But because he was there, he was mistaken as a gambler and arrested. Of course he had to shout that he was innocent. But the police paid no attention to what he was saying, and in the end they hung him up and brutally whipped him with leather belts.

Not long after that, the 610 Office sent me to Fangqiang Forced Labor Camp in Jiangsu Province. This labor camp was praised as a "civilized labor camp," when in fact it was an evil place for the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners. Division 2 of the labor camp in particular was a base for persecution. A practitioner named Zhang Qihu was detained there at that time. I heard that he had a PhD degree and was a lecturer at the Xuzhou Normal University. Because he was an intellectual, he was listed by the labor camp authorities as a key person to be "transformed."

In order to force Dr. Zhang to give up practicing Falun Gong, the vicious guards used all kinds of techniques on him, including sleep deprivation, excessive slave labor, and implicating his family members. But all these failed to bend Dr. Zhang's will.

One morning, most of the Falun Gong practitioners in Division 2 were taken out to do forced labor, and there was only myself and a few other practitioners left in the cell. It was very quiet. Earlier that morning, I had seen a guard calling Dr. Zhang to the office. I thought at the time, "I wonder what they will do to him today?" At around 10:00 am, we heard heart-wrenching screams coming from the office. We were startled and stood up at the same time, "What's happening?" "Who is that?" At that moment, the very air seemed to have frozen in the cell. We all had the same feeling, that it must be the sounds of the guards torturing Dr. Zhang.

Then, suddenly everything went quiet again.

About ten minutes later, we heard another burst of screams coming from the office. I felt as if my heart had been pierced through, and it was beating very fast. It felt like I was being suffocated. Then, off in the distance, I could hear other practitioners shouting out, "Stop beating people! Stop beating people!" Then we heard a few more bursts of screams.

Two days later, I heard from a drug addict inmate who was assigned to monitor Dr. Zhang that it had been Dr. Zhang who was screaming that day.

As it turned out, the guards got angry and frustrated over Dr. Zhang's refusal to give up practicing Falun Gong, and they decided to torture him that morning. They called Dr. Zhang to the office, and five or six guards pushed him into a chair and cuffed his hands and feet to two other chairs so that he couldn't move, thus immobilizing him.

Team leader Xu sat behind a table opposite Dr. Zhang and put one foot on the table. After they had immobilized Dr. Zhang, he switched on the electric baton and played with it in his hand. The baton showed blue sparkling flashes and gave off a frightening crackling sound. Then he said to Dr. Zhang, "So, have you thought things over?" Dr. Zhang said calmly, "I have told you what I wanted to say. Nothing will change." Then Xu said, "Then don't blame us for what we're going to do. I don't believe that I cannot tame you." With that he pointed to the other guards, who immediately started shocking the sensitive parts of Dr. Zhang's body with electric batons.

A few minutes later, Xu asked Dr. Zhang, with a smirk on his face, "So, how was that? You must have gained some new understanding now." But Dr. Zhang did not give in and sternly told them that they were knowingly violating the law.

The police then attacked him again with their electric batons. At one point they used four electric batons to shock him at the same time, until he lost consciousness.

The following paragraph is from the UN "Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment,"

"The term 'torture' means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity." (quoted from http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/h_cat39.htm)

Clearly, measured by this definition, whether considering the man who was wrongly arrested and beaten by the police or Dr. Zhang, who was cruelly tortured with electric batons, they are both victims of torture.

As far as I know, at Fangqiang Forced Labor Camp, Dr. Zhang was not the only Falun Gong practitioner who had been subjected to torture by electric shocking, and at least several dozen others had also been subjected to the same form of torture. As time went on, I also found that the guards not only routinely tortured Falun Gong practitioners, they also often shocked other inmates as well. In the police departments in China, many people have routinely been subjected to beatings similar to that middle-aged man who shouted out, protesting his innocence.

In short, abundant evidence indicates that for a long time, under the dictatorship of the Chinese Communist Party, torture has been commonplace in China's police departments, prisons and labor camps. It always existed in the past, and it still exists today. It happens to prisoners of conscience on a large scale, and it also happens to other people, including ordinary citizens. It is only due to the regime's information blockade, that such reprehensible conduct has never been fully exposed.

In public, the hallmark of the Communist regime is covering up facts by using lofty-sounding words. The truth, however, is that its behavior is just the opposite of this "zero tolerance for torture," and its actions and policies instigate and encourage the use of torture. China has not "made remarkable progress on human rights" at all. It is not that the report on China by the UN Panel on Torture is "slanderous, in defiance of facts, and fabricated evidence" as the Chinese regime charged. Instead it is the official representatives of the Communist regime, in defiance of the facts, who openly tell lies and do everything they can to cover up the facts.