(Minghui.org) A 65-year-old woman was tortured to death on December 12, 2020, 17 months after she was imprisoned for her faith in Falun Gong, a mind-body discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Zhang Yaqin from Xiangtan City, Hunan Province, was arrested on December 30, 2018, for talking to people about Falun Gong and sentenced to three years in prison on August 13, 2019.
When she was admitted to Hunan Province Women’s Prison in September 2019, Ms. Zhang was held in the High-Security Division and subjected to intensive brainwashing aimed at forcing her to renounce Falun Gong. Her family was never allowed to visit her during that time to punish her for her refusing to give up her faith. At the same time, the authorities monitored and intimidated her family, trying to prevent them from seeking justice for Ms. Zhang.
It’s been reported that, since 2017, all Falun Gong practitioners newly admitted to the prison have to spend the first two months in the High-Security Division and be subjected to brainwashing and coercion designed to force them to give up Falun Gong.
During this time, they are forced to stand for long hours each day and not allowed to use the restroom. When they end up relieving themselves in their pants, the guards only allow them to wash their pants quickly but not their bodies. They also force the practitioners to wear the soiled pants, even in the winter. After a while, their lower bodies become infected and fester.
A guard once instigated an inmate to torture Falun Gong practitioners like this: “We'll let them eat but not use the restroom.”
As a result of the torture, Ms. Xiao Meijun suffered a stroke and became incapacitated. She couldn’t walk on her own, her hands shook involuntarily, and most of her teeth fell out during the punitive force-feedings. She was released on May 18, 2018, and passed away on March 2, 2020.
Other practitioners who have been tortured like this include Ms. Jin Fuwan, Ms. Li Jumei, and a practitioner in her 30s. Ms. Liu Fuchun developed a heart condition and bile duct stones six months into her term.
Ms. Zhang developed high blood pressure and became emaciated after being tortured. She passed away in the prison on December 12, 2020, at the age of 65.
This was the second time Ms. Zhang had been incarcerated in the same prison for her faith. During her first term of three and a half years between 2008 and 2011, she was shocked with electric batons, deprived of sleep, forced to stand for long hours, tied up on a tiger bench, and subjected to a handcuffing torture in which she had one hand pulled over her shoulder and cuffed to the other hand pulled up behind her back. She was also forced to do intensive labor and injected with unknown drugs.