(Minghui.org) A Lanzhou City resident credits Falun Gong, a mind-body discipline, for curing her chronic kidney inflammation, migraines and anemia. Her pursuit of health landed her in police custody after the Chinese communist regime launched a nationwide campaign against Falun Gong in 1999 due to its immense popularity.
Ms. Yue Dingxiang, 61, recently recounted to a Minghui correspondent the tortures she suffered during her eight years of incarceration, including one year of forced labor and seven years of imprisonment.
I was arrested in 2003 for distributing materials about Falun Gong, hoping to clarify people's misconception about Falun Gong from the government's propaganda. I was given one year of forced labor two weeks later and taken to Gansu No.1 Forced Labor Camp (also known as Ping'antai Forced Labor Camp) in July 2003.
Every Falun Gong practitioner taken there was monitored around the clock by two inmates. The labor camp didn't allow practitioners to talk to each other. To prevent me from doing the Falun Gong exercises, the two inmates monitoring me slept in the same bed with me and sandwiched me.
Wherever I went, be it eating or using the restroom, the inmates always followed me. If the guards didn't see the three of us together, they would punish the inmates.
Because I refused to renounce Falun Gong, the guards forced me to stand under the scorching sun in a sleeveless tank top for long hours. I was so badly sunburned that there were blisters on my arms and my skin peeled. At night, they continued to beat me, verbally abuse me, and force me to stand without sleep.
After intensive tortures during the first few months, they began to force me to do farm labor. I wasn't given enough food and yet had to work non-stop until it was dark.
During the winter, there was no hot shower, and we were ordered to wipe our bodies with cold water.
To increase my suffering, the guards nailed three pieces of metal plates on the wooden bed I slept on. I often had great pain in my ribs and back after waking up.
The guards once forced me to stand for eight days straight without sleep because I refused to write the thought reports they required. I became severely swollen all over my body, and yet they continued to force me to do hard labor on the ninth day.
Not until my family visited me and saw my swelling body did the labor camp send me to the hospital for medical treatment.
But instead of treating me, the doctors forcibly withdrew my bone marrow on the second day I was taken there. No reason was given as to why such a biopsy was needed. Half a month later, I was taken back to the labor camp and forced to do all the hard labor again.
A guard surnamed Wang once said to me: “For Falun Gong people like you, we don't bear any responsibilities if we beat you to death. We can go ahead and cremate you without confirming who you are. This is the order from Jiang Zemin (the former head of the communist regime who ordered the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999).”
I was arrested again on April 14, 2008, and detained at Lanzhou No.1 Detention Center. I developed scabies due to the poor living conditions there. A few medical staff also came and took blood samples from me and several other practitioners there.
I was sentenced to seven years in prison on December 10, 2008, by judge Jin Jiyong from Chengguan District Court. They didn't send the verdict to my family until December 25, after the two-week window for me to appeal the sentence had expired.
I was taken to Gansu Women's Prison on January 6, 2009. From that day on, I was subjected to non-stop tortures for not renouncing my belief.
The guards often used sentence reduction as rewards to motivate the inmates to torture me and other imprisoned Falun Gong practitioners.
An inmate once put a stool on my feet and then had another inmate stand on the stool. Meanwhile, they kicked my lower body so hard that I was unable to walk and became incontinent. They said to me, “We will torture you to death if you don't stop practicing Falun Gong.”
They found all kinds of reasons to torture me, sometimes hitting my head and ankle with a wooden chair, sometimes beating my face with their shoes, and sometimes shocking me with electric batons all over my body.
An inmate once forced me to drink a big bottle of water and didn't allow me to use the restroom. When I couldn't hold it any longer and rushed to the restroom, she poured cold water on me, leaving all my clothes wet in the cold of winter.
Another inmate kicked my back as I bent over to pick up something. I felt extreme pain in my back and was unable to stand up or walk. It took me over two months to recover from the kicking.