Wed, 21 Nov 2001

The fiance of one of the Australians being held detention in Beijing for practising Falun Gong, has defended her actions.

Melbourne's Kate Douglas was one of 35 followers of the banned movement who unfurled banners and performed the outlawed exercies of Falun Gong in Tiananmen Square.

The Chinese Government outlawed the movement, which revolves around exercises aimed at cultivating the mind and spirit, in 1999.

The fiance of Ms Douglas, Simon Vereshaka, is imploring the Chinese Government to release her and all detained practitioners, saying his fiance's done nothing wrong,

"She wanted to raise awareness about the persecution and it is really vicious, they are killing practitioners, they are sending them into mental institutions, heavily overdosing them with drugs as well they are beating them severely," he said.

Mr Vereshaka and a number of Melbourne Fulun Gong practitioners will hold a peaceful appeal outside The Melbourne Chinese Consulate on tonight..