Torture Methods used in the Xishanping Labor Camp: Locking Prisoners into the "Leifeng Tower," Starvation and Physical Punishment
(Report on May 9 in Clearwisdom.net)
Locking Prisoners into "Leifeng Tower"
The so-called "Leifeng Tower" in Xishanping Labor Camp is a dark place of about two square meters (about 20 square feet) that includes two rooms with no sunlight, only ghastly darkness. A stone slab in one of the rooms constitutes a bed while the other room contains no furniture at all. Human excrement is visible everywhere, since there is no toilet. In addition, because rats and snakes have infested the place, rotting animal corpses give off an unbearable stench. Rumors had it that one woman imprisoned here could not bear this kind of torture, and committed suicide by hanging herself. Although getting "locked into Leifeng Tower" was considered terrifying punishment, the police in the "Rigorously Guarded Team" used it many times to torment kind-hearted and righteous Falun Gong practitioners.
In 2000, Dafa practitioner Han Yiming was locked inside for seven days and nights, where he was forced to sleep on the stone slab without a blanket. Another practitioner, Kang Hong, was suspended from the wall for three nights and days in such a way that he was forced to balance his body on tiptoes, and was not allowed to sit or lie down. As a result, he was forced to urinate and defecate in his pants.
In November 2000, Kang Hong and Li Xiangdong reported the atrocities perpetrated by the "Rigorously Guarded Team" to the Chongqing Labor Education Bureau during a routine inspection. Team leader Du Yi locked these two Dafa disciples into the tower, as soon as the inspection team left. Since Kang Hong resisted this torture several times, he was later locked in the tower multiple times, and was punished by being forced to squat down while being handcuffed to the wall.
None of the Dafa disciples who were locked into the Tower were allowed to have a blanket or put on an overcoat. There was no exception to this rule, even in the wintertime. They were only allowed two meals a day and for each meal, they only received half their regular rations; that is to say, every day, they received only 3 to 4 liang (about 5-7oz) of food.
Torture by Starvation
Falun Gong practitioners in the "Rigorously Guarded Team" received only porridge and steamed buns for their breakfast, and for their second meal they received dry rice as the staple food. Since the buns were so small, they called them "pager-sized buns". The porridge consisted of cooked rice mixed with cold water, although it contained more water than rice. The vegetables served were boiled in water and contained little nutritional value. They were wilted and had sprouted already. In addition to the salt in which the vegetables were cooked, there were also sand, hair and worms. The guards did not allow Falun Gong practitioners to eat meat. Of course, the Dafa practitioners would not be willing to eat this kind of meat, even if they were supplied with it, as it was the cheapest cuts of pork containing fat and gristle. Very often, it was undercooked, and smelled badly. Even when this inferior meat was served, there was still too little to go around. Criminal inmates often fought over the buns, because the starvation was so severe and the guards could not drive them away even with sticks. Often, they even stole the table salt.
Every time a team was sent by the government to inspect the labor camp, somehow camp officials were able to hide their shortcomings. For example, they officially claimed that they spent one hundred Yuan per month on meals for every inmate. In reality, the monthly meal expenditure was closer to 30 Yuan per person. In most cases government officials tried to cover for each other, but on some occasions their scams were exposed. When the deception about the money for meals was discovered, camp officials restrained themselves for a while. But very soon, since the labor camp made use of the excuse that the meat was thrown away anyway, they redoubled their efforts to embezzle the meal money. Actually the meat thrown away was only the undercooked, sometimes even rotten pieces, which were inedible anyway. Some of the prisoners were so starved that they ate this kind of meat with great difficulty, but then suffered from gastrointestinal problems for several days.
Regarding this inhuman treatment, Dafa practitioner Li Chunyuan reported the situation to the mess officer Zhou Ping, and was handcuffed to a door for several days in response. Zhou Ping called out to everyone: "Our meal standard is 8 liang (about 0.88 lb) cooked food instead of 8 liang (about 0.88 lb) of rice per day." But on the blackboard, the camp officials wrote down 11 liang (about 1.2 lb) for per person. Many prisoners were angry but dared not say anything although they admired Falun Gong practitioners' courage to uphold justice.
The "Rigorously Guarded Team" was notorious for having to suffer being detained in the "Leifeng Tower," "pager-size buns" and the "frog jump" at Xishanping. According to the guards' own admission, they would first use "starvation", and then "frog jumps" and "push-ups" to allegedly "build up the prisoner's health". Imprisoned Falun Gong practitioners were forced to do 200 to 300 push-ups at a time. The push-ups had to be done when the torturer counted out "one!" The practitioner had to lower down his body, but not rest on the floor, and then he was not allowed to push up until the torturer called "two." Only by then did the torturer count it as one push-up. Another torture method used was the "frog-jump," in which the prisoners had to jump around the basketball playground 10 to 14 times. Some of them were forced to jump on shaky legs until they collapsed. In addition, prisoners were forced to run 60-100 circles around the basketball playground. Camp officials constantly invented new ways to torture people. Jailed Falun Gong practitioners were placed under "rigorous guard" for unlimited periods of time. For example, Dafa practitioner Han Yiming was kept under "rigorous guard" for a long time. In addition to the physical punishment and starvation, practitioners were forced to stand for two hours at noon or even until midnight.
In early 2001, a prison guard named Jiang lost money gambling. He took his frustration out on all Falun Gong practitioners as well as other prisoners by forcing them to squat. Dafa practitioner Tian Yicheng was placed in solitary confinement for ten days. Since Tian Yicheng was a determined practitioner, he was often badly battered. As a result, his eyesight became blurred, and he had difficulties walking.
Even in Difficult Situations, Practitioners do not Forget to Treat Others With Compassion.
Faced with this difficult situation, Dafa practitioners became more and more clear-minded about resisting the persecution, while also cultivating their own compassion. For example, they often offered some of their personal supplies to criminal inmates who never had visitors. Dafa practitioner Han Yiming bought face towels and toilet paper for those prisoners, although he himself used an old vest as a face towel. Dafa practitioner Li Chunyuan often bought toilet paper for fellow practitioners and regular prisoners while he himself used pieces of thick cardboard instead. When Dafa practitioner Li Xiangdong was placed in confinement, his meal portions were halved. The other fellow practitioners secretly passed him their own buns without letting the guards know, and he often shared with his roommates. However Dafa practitioners' compassion under such a difficult situation was persecuted by the policemen. For example, when Dafa practitioner Wang Xianlin saw an inmate without money to buy daily supplies, he gave this prisoner ten Yuan. Unexpectedly, when a policeman saw this, he accused it of being a type of bribery and punished Wang.