Imprisoned Woman Tortured for Her Faith, Denied Family Visits and Medical Parole
(Minghui.org) A Yunnan Province resident serving 10 years for her faith has had her family visits repeatedly cut short or completely denied when she complained about how she has been tortured in prison.
Ms. He Lianchun’s family requested she be released on medical parole, as the prison had twice informed them she was in critical condition and that she now weighs only 66 pounds.
The prison, however, turned down their request, saying, “She won't qualify for medical parole as long as she refuses to admit her guilt.”
This is not the first time Ms. He has been targeted for refusing to renounce Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline being persecuted by the Chinese communist regime. She was first sentenced to 5 years in 2001 before being arrested again in 2009 and given another 10 years.
Her family is extremely concerned about her well-being.
2 Arrests, 15 Years of Jail Time
Ms. He is 46 years old and lives in Mengzi County, Yunnan Province. She was first arrested on October 1, 2001 for distributing materials to tell the public about the communist regime's persecution of Falun Gong. She was subsequently sentenced to five years in Yunnan Province Second Women's Prison.
She was arrested again on January 23, 2009 for the same reason. This time, she was secretly sentenced to 10 years in the same prison.
Torture, Brutal Force-Feeding
Because Ms. He does not believe she has done anything wrong, she refuses to admit guilt. The prison has put her under “strict control,” where she was monitored around the clock, since the first day of her second imprisonment in 2009.
She was beaten and forced to sit still on a “small stool” (used as a torture device) for 16 hours a day. She was not allowed to talk or leave her cell.
The prison restricted her toilet use, drinking water, sleep, bathing, and purchasing of items for daily use.
She held a hunger strike to protest her mistreatment. The prison responded by force-feeding her, which damaged her throat, stomach, and other organs. Her teeth became so loose that she could no longer chew anything–she even had to soften rice with water to swallow it, which made eating an ordeal. Her stomach could no longer handle any spicy food.
The Minghui website has reported Ms. He’s arrests and torture in two articles:Ms. He Lianchun Secretly Given Ten More Years of Imprisonment after Serving Five-Year Sentence (2011) and A Father's Cry: Can Our Daughter Come Out of Prison Alive? (2014).
Since 2015, Ms. He has been telling her family when they visit that she is still being mistreated.
After being routinely denied use of the toilet, she now has problems urinating. She was sometimes forced to relieve herself in her pants. Once when she urinated in a dustpan, an inmate who was assigned to monitor her pushed her head down, soaked her face and hair in the urine, and kicked her.
For ten months in 2012, she was deprived of water and unable to wash herself. Thus, she was filthy when her family visited her in September that year. However, the guards blamed her for wetting her pants and failing to bathe.
During a visit on September 22, 2015, Ms. He told her family that the forcible insertion of the plastic tube during force-feeding had caused great damage to her nose and stomach. Scar tissue in her nose even prevented guards from inserting the tube.
On June 14, 2016, her father, brother, and sister were shocked when they saw her: there were injuries on her face below her nose, and she was emaciated. Her brother was reduced to tears.
Ms. He told them, “The guards stuck a huge spoon into my mouth, all the way down my throat, to force-feed me. That spoon was specially designed and made by the prison. It tore my throat. They force-fed me three times a day, each time until I vomited blood.”
Family Visits Cut Short or Denied
The prison also denied her family's requests to visit at least eight times. Each time Ms. He’s family was allowed to visit her, guards monitored and videotaped their conversations.
Guards have cut short five family visits since 2015, when she talked about how she was tortured or when her family told her about people filing criminal complaints against Jiang Zemin, the former Chinese Communist Party leader who initiated the persecution of Falun Gong.
Ms. He told her family how much she was suffering on May 12, 2015. Guards cut off the visit.
The following month, the prison repeatedly denied her family's visitation requests.
On July 15, 2015, the guards disconnected Ms. He's phone right after she told her family that she had lost several teeth due to being force-fed.
On June 14, 2016, when Ms. He told her family about the force-feeding, guards monitoring the meeting ordered her not to speak.
Looking at the video camera, Ms. He pointed to the sky, “I swear to Heaven all I said was truth!”
A guard disconnected the phone and called in two strong inmates to drag Ms. He out of the visiting room.
On July 20, the prison turned down her sister and niece’s request to visit, claiming that Ms. He had leaked too many of the prison’s secrets during the previous visit.
The prison denied a request to visit from her sister, daughter, and niece again on July 27, quoting the same reason.
Medical Parole Denied
During a visit on June 10, 2014, Ms. He's family asked that she be released on medical parole. Prison officials denied the request.
Later, her family mailed and hand-delivered multiple medical parole applications to the prison and the prison administration bureau. They did not receive a response until May 12, 2016.
After her family's visit, a guard handed their medical parole application back to her sister, saying, “She won't meet the medical parole requirement if she doesn't admit guilt.”
“Even if she's in critical condition?” asked her sister.
“Yes!” The guard answered and left without looking at them.