Australian News Website Publishes 3-Part Investigation into Chinese Regime's Abuse of Falun Gong Practitioners
(Minghui.org) An Australian online news website, news.com.au, recently published a 3-part investigation into the persecution of Falun Gong. The same website earlier on published an in-depth report on forced organ harvesting from Falun Gong practitioners. The recent story was also picked up by a prominent New Zealand daily, the New Zealand Herald, giving further exposure to the human rights abuses taking place in China.
A total of five Falun Gong practitioners were interviewed for the Australian report. The two men and three women came from different backgrounds yet went through the same kind of harrowing experience. Simply for upholding their faith in Falun Gong, they were arrested, tortured, forced to go through endless brainwashing sessions, and risked having their organs removed.
They are fortunate to have escaped persecution in China and resettled in Australia. Yet the interviews also suggest that they still bear deep psychological scars from their ordeals back in China.
Profiles of Interviewees
Mr. Jintao Liu, 36, was a chemical technology student at the China University of Petroleum when he was arrested in 2006. He spent more than two years in detention without any charge or conviction.
Ms. Xiao Chen, a 43-year-old mother, was separated from her baby son when she was arrested and given a three-and-a-half-year term of forced labor.
Ms. Fengying Zhang, a 66-year-old grandmother, was sent straight to a brainwashing center and was severely tortured after being arrested in 2014.
Mr. Hongbin Lin, 43, was a naval officer in the Chinese military. He spent one and a half years in a forced labor camp. Not long after his release, he was arrested again and sentenced to six years in prison.
Ms. Chang Zhi Yue, 78, was an electro engineer in an aeronautic department and a painter. She was incarcerated for four years in Beijing Women’s Prison, where she suffered extreme torture and abuse.
Part 1: Extreme torture: Inside China’s correctional facilities
The first part of the series looks into the severe abuse inflicted on Falun Gong practitioners in Chinese detention centers, prisons and forced labor camps. Below is an excerpt from Mr. Liu’s experience as published in news.com.au.
JINTAO Liu’s body shuddered in pain as he endured yet another day of extreme torture.
He had woken to pins being pushed into his nails before he was forced to stand still in a yard for some 18 hours. If he moved, he was beaten viciously and within an inch of his life.
Each excruciating second of the gruelling punishment caused his legs to swell as his body threatened to buckle under the pressure. He was given “no toilet breaks”, and shown no mercy. Time had become his enemy — but not his worst.
That was a typical day for Mr Liu during a lengthy stint in a series of Beijing detention centres and labour camps between 2006 and 2009.
There, he was subjected to electric shocks, medical tests, forced feedings, beatings, violent sexual assaults and other barbaric forms of torture designed by prison guards to humiliate and inflict maximum pain.
But it was one particularly savage punishment that etched the deepest psychological scar on Mr Liu.
“The incident which marked me the most was when they, four of (the prison guards), stripped me of my clothes, and used the toilet brush to pierce my anus, saying that they would pierce until I turned homosexual,” Mr Liu told news.com.au.
“They pulled my pubic hairs and played with my genitals.”
His only ‘crime’ was to practice Falun Gong, a spiritual meditation based on the guiding principles of “truth, compassion and tolerance”.
But perhaps just as shocking is that the Chinese government has been carrying out these human rights atrocities — including forced organ removal for harvesting purposes — on innocent citizens and convicted criminals for the best part of the past two decades. And it’s still happening today.
Part 2: Inside China’s secret brainwashing centres
The second part of the series reports on how Falun Gong practitioners were forced to watch videos containing propaganda against their spiritual belief. Below is an excerpt.
The Chinese government has been mercilessly persecuting Falun Gong practitioners ever since by torturing, killing and locking them up in ‘black jails’ — a network of extra-legal labour camps and detention centres established by the Communist Party to detain citizens without charge or conviction.
Detainees who don’t agree upon arrest to change their beliefs are sent to brainwashing centres for “re-education” where they are immersed in propaganda and brutally tortured physically and psychologically until they sign a waiver renouncing their beliefs. It’s a government-run system so secret it doesn’t even officially exist. The goal: To wipe out Falun Gong.
Some of those who escaped persecution and resettled in Australia after being granted refugee status have shared their shocking stories with news.com.au in a bid to expose the scale and severity of the human rights abuses in China and help bring them to an end.
Falun Gong practitioner Xiao Chen, 43, was sent to a brainwashing centre during a three-and-a-half-year stint in a forced labour camp where she was tortured for refusing to renounce her beliefs. She was imprisoned without charge or conviction and torn from her baby son.
Ms Chen said officials put inmates through an intensive program of mental and physical torture that included beatings, prolonged interrogations, sleep deprivation and continuous exposure to video and audio propaganda.
“If we still refused to recant, we were sent to an isolated room,” Ms Chen said.
“In the isolation room, you could not see the sunlight outside and we were forced to watch brainwashing videos against Falun Gong.
“We would spend the whole day inside, being brainwashed, forced to watch videos, punished by squatting and being deprived of sleep, for extended periods of time.
“They would not allow us to take any showers or anything for many days.
“I felt the police were too cruel, especially to us Falun Gong practitioners, as they would torture us until we died or had a mental breakdown.”
Part 3: The reality of human organ harvesting in China
This part delves into the dark details of how Chinese detention facilities performed medical examinations on Falun Gong practitioners to check their suitability for organ harvesting. Below is an excerpt.
IMAGINE being abducted and whisked away to a cell where you spend the next several months or years without charge or conviction.
There, authorities torture you and force you to watch films designed to brainwash in a bid to align your views with those of China’s ruling Communist Party.
Every now and then you are dragged from your filthy, overcrowded cell into a room where, without warning, needles are jabbed into your arm and blood is drawn into as many vials as it can fill. Then prison authorities instruct a group of drug addicted criminals to use violence to restrain you as you are made to give a urine sample and subjected to invasive medical procedures.
No one responds to your screams or cries for help. No explanation is offered. The process is repeated regularly.
You might make it out alive after years of enduring the brutal treatment. Or you might be secretly executed.
There’s also a strong chance you might die on the operating table after surgeons sedate you and start removing organs from your body, one by one — while you’re still alive.
The government will say that you simply disappeared or that you were never there to begin with. But it’ll most likely say nothing at all.
Meanwhile, wealthy people will file into purpose-built hospitals for lifesaving organ transplants. The selection of human kidneys, livers and other organs is vast. That’s because thousands of people have been slaughtered to put them there. Organ harvesting is a lucrative business for the Chinese government.
That is the reality for thousands of Chinese citizens who have reportedly been subjected to forced medical testing for the purposes of organ harvesting for the best part of the past two decades.
China’s Communist Party continues to commit human rights atrocities on political prisoners in detention centres, labour camps and prisons across the country, according to reports.
No one is safe under the Communist Party’s regime but Falun Gong — a spiritual meditation based on the guiding principles of “truth, compassion and tolerance” — practitioners are the main targets.
The Chinese government banned the Falun Gong in 1999 and has been mercilessly persecuting, torturing, killing and locking them up in “black jails” — a network of extra-legal labour camps and detention centres established by the Communist Party to detain citizens without charge or conviction.
Falun Gong practitioner Fengying Zhang, 66, thought she was going to be killed for her organs after being repeatedly subjected to forced medical testing.
Ms Zhang was arrested and imprisoned for handing out Falun Gong leaflets outside a Beijing marketplace in 2013. She became a political prisoner in a series of detention centres and labour camps, where she, along with hundreds of other prisoners, were repeatedly examined in medical procedures, reportedly aimed at assessing the viability of their retail organs.
Ms Fengying told news.com.au she was forced to give blood samples which were taken from her arms and earlobes.
She asked the doctors why they were taking her blood but they never answered, she said.
She was also made to provide urine samples, have X-rays and EKGs. She said she was among a group of about 100 detainees who were marched to a van and forced to undergo more tests together. Ms Zhang said she thought she would die on a surgeon’s table until she was released in 2014.
Related Article in Chinese:澳洲新闻集团-中共劳教所中极端恶劣的酷刑