(Minghui.org) Ms. Zhou Fenglan was arrested after spending six years in hiding to avoid being persecuted for her faith in Falun Gong. She suffered a stroke days after being released on bail. Yet the police still came back to harass her from time to time. She is now struggling with the aftereffects of the stroke and has difficulty walking and maintaining her balance.

Ms. Zhou, 72, of Suihua City, Heilongjiang, began to practice Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline, in February 1998. Through the practice, not only did her severe long-term illnesses, including heart disease, high blood pressure, arthritis, and mesencephalitis (infection or inflammation of the brain) disappear, but her aggressiveness and dominating personality also improved. Her entire family benefited and enjoyed a happier life.

When the Chinese Communist Party started the persecution of Falun Gong a year later in 1999, the lives of millions of Falun Gong practitioners were changed, including Ms. Zhou’s.

Leaving Home in 2012

Ms. Zhou helped Ms. Zhao Min, a practitioner from Qing'an County, who was displaced to avoid the persecution, to settle down at her new temporary home in Suihua on September 10, 2012. Right after she left Ms. Zhao's place at around 3:00 p.m., Liu Kunpeng, a member of the Beilin District 610 Office, stopped her. Another police officer came from behind and pulled Ms. Zhou’s bike.

Liu claimed that he lost a bag, which looked the same as Ms. Zhou’s. He grabbed Ms. Zhou’s bag and searched it without her permission. When he didn’t find anything related to Falun Gong, he let her go.

Ms. Zhou later discovered that the police had monitored her phone calls with Ms. Zhao and had started to monitor her daily life as she helped Ms. Zhao settle in.

At 7:00 p.m., before Ms. Zhao returned home, a neighbor called her and asked her not to come back, since a group of officers were outside of her apartment building, possibly on the lookout for her. Ms. Zhou took the suggestion and went into hiding.

Officers from the Qing'an County 610 Office arrested Ms. Zhao and another practitioner, Ms. Liu Zhongjie, who was visiting her, that same evening.

It was later learned that Ms. Zhao, a retired teacher, was followed by the police on her way from Qing’an County to Suihua that day. Ms. Zhou picked her up at the bus station and they went to Ms. Zhao’s rental home together, without realizing they had been followed.

After failing to capture Ms. Zhou, the 610 Office agents raided her several residences. Her two boxes of Falun Gong books, informational materials, four printers, two computers, and CDs were confiscated. They also went to the sauce factory her family owned, pried open the door, smashed the glass, rummaged around, and even searched inside of large saucepans. Ms. Zhou’s in-laws, the owners of the factory, demanded compensation from the 610 Office and were paid for the replacement of the door and glass.

In order to arrest Ms. Zhou, the police stayed outside of her home for a month.

Both Ms. Zhao and Ms. Liu were taken to the Suihua Brainwashing Center and held there for over six months. Ms. Zhao’s family later paid the police 100,000 yuan, and Ms. Liu’s family paid 50,000 yuan, in exchange for their releases.

Family Harassed

To avoid being arrested, Ms. Zhou spent the next six years in hiding. The police, on the other hand, never stopped looking for her. They monitored and wiretapped her family from September 2012 to the second half of 2015, and frequently harassed them as well. Her family lived under constant pressure and anxiety.

Her husband was summoned to the police department by 610 Office agents and asked to identify through a pile of photos of practitioners who had contacts with Ms. Zhou.

The 610 Office agents also went to Ms. Zhou’s second daughter’s store and asked her about her mother’s whereabouts. Her daughter could not hold her tears and told them that her family worried about her mother badly as well, especially how she spent the freezing cold winter in northeastern China. She said she had a child with cerebral palsy at home and asked the officers not to come back, fearing the harassment would terrify her child.

Arrested in 2018

The police tracked down Ms. Zhou in Harbin City in the same Heilongjiang Province in August 2018, after three months of tailing her. They checked her rental home and her ID with the excuse of performing a fire safety inspection.

Ms. Zhou was arrested on November 8, 2018, while visiting Mr. Tang Mingyi and his wife Ms. Ma Yongbo. She often went there to give out Falun Gong informational materials to people. She had no idea that the couple had been arrested, and she was seized at the doorstep by police who were waiting there.

Before she came, over 20 police officers had raided the couple’s residence and confiscated their Falun Gong books, the book Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party, three computers, four printers, and more than 20 boxes of paper and ink. Similar to Ms. Zhou, the couple fled their home in Hegang City and came to Harbin to avoid persecution 16 years ago.

The police seized 2,300 yuan in cash that Ms. Zhou had with her and then ransacked her residence. Her computer was ransacked.

When Ms. Zhou was taken to the Harbin City Second Detention Center, she was surprised to see nearly 100 practitioners in the lobby. It turned out that over a hundred Falun Gong practitioners in Harbin were arrested on the same day in a police sweep.

In the lobby, all of the practitioners had their blood, DNA samples, and fingerprints collected. There were also doctors measuring their blood pressure and performing electrocardiograms on them.

Ms. Zhou’s blood pressure was at a dangerously high level of 280/150 mmHg. The detention center doctor was afraid that her blood vessels could burst at any time, and asked the police to take her to a hospital.

As the hospital was full and refused to admit more patients, the police contacted Ms. Zhou’s daughter and released her on bail the next evening.


Wei, a police chief from Daowai District Police Department of Harbin City, called Ms. Zhou in mid-November 2018 and summoned her to the police department a week later.

When he called the third time in early December 2018, Ms. Zhou’s daughter told him that her mother just suffered a stroke and had been hospitalized.

Not believing Ms. Zhou’s condition, Wei insisted that she report to the police department, even if she was taken there on a stretcher. He later called her doctor to confirm her condition. Despite that the doctor wasn’t optimistic about her recovery, the police still came back to harass her a few days later.

When both Ms. Zhou and her husband were hospitalized (her husband had a stroke from worrying about her condition), the police harassed and videotaped her on July 19, 2019.

The police harassed and videotaped her again in the summer of 2020.

Chinese version available

Category: Accounts of Persecution