(Clearwisdom.net) On the occasion of the upcoming Human Rights Torch Relay in Boston, US Senator Edward Kennedy wrote the following letter expressing concern over the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners and condemning the serious human rights abuses in China. He urged all nations to come together to meet this great challenge.

United States Senate

March 30, 2008

Dear Friends,

I wish very much that I could be with all of you in person for this important rally, and I commend you for all you're doing to raise awareness about the serious human rights abuses in China.

The United States must take a leading role in advancing the cause of human rights and in responding to basic human needs. Throughout my years in the Senate, I have strongly advocated improvements in human rights around the world. Our ideals, our international obligations, and our long-term security demand that we give high priority to human rights in our foreign policy.

In China, freedom of the press is being undermined, and freedom of religion is under attack for religious minorities. Like all of you, I am deeply concerned about continuing reports of Falun Gong practitioners in China who are suffering from restrictions on freedom of belief and expression, arbitrary detentions, and even torture and death in custody. We as a nation also have an obligation to speak out about China's recent actions in Tibet and its role in human rights abuses in other nations as well. Especially now, as China prepares to host the Summer Olympic Games this year, it is time for the United States to urge all nations to come together to meet this great challenge.

President Kennedy believed very deeply that "each of us can make a difference, and all of us should try." That principle should guide us now. Our nation and our world need your commitment, energy, and idealism to build a better future for all peoples everywhere.

Thank you for the difference you are making, and I send my warmest wishes for a wonderful rally.


Edward M. Kennedy