(Minghui.org) Minghui Report: The 20-Year Persecution of Falun Gong in China, the first book from Minghui Publishing, was announced on May 14 as a winner of The Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA)’s annual Benjamin Franklin Award.

IBPA is the largest publishing trade association in the United States. The book won its Bill Fisher Silver Award that recognizes publishers’ first books in the nonfiction category.

Front and back of Minghui Report: The 20-Year Persecution of Falun Gong in China

During an interview with Sound of Hope on May 17, Mr. David Li from Minghui Publishing said this book tells a complete story of how Falun Gong practitioners have been persecuted in China since 1999. It is the first comprehensive book in the world on the story of Falun Gong practitioners.

David Li from Minghui Publishing attended the award ceremony.

A True Testimony to Practitioners’ Perseverance

Many people may have heard about Falun Gong and possibly the persecution imposed on it by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Mr. Li said this book can be helpful to any reader interested in learning more about Falun Gong. The book has detailed descriptions of how practitioners have been abused and tortured at detention centers, labor camps, or prisons simply for upholding their belief. The tortures included beating, shocking with electric batons, forced labor, and many more. The intense and long-term physical torture and mental abuse had caused many cases of death and disability.

The persecution has also penetrated society and affected people of all ages and professions. The elderly were deprived of pensions, children forced out of school, and those in the workforce out of jobs. Coming from all walks of life, their only commonality is striving to be better citizens by following Falun Gong’s principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and facing relentless persecution by the CCP.

The book is divided into 16 chapters. From high level summary to individual cases, the book reveals how the CCP mobilizes the state apparatus to defame Falun Gong and turn government officials and ordinary citizens alike into accomplices in crimes committed against innocent Falun Gong practitioners.

The first half of the book details the CCP’s persecution, while the second half focuses on practitioners’ peaceful and persistent efforts to safeguard their freedom of belief, such as writing to CCP officials and urging them to stop participating in the persecution, passing out flyers, and filing criminal complaints against key perpetrators.

Filling in the Vacuum of Information

The principles that Falun Gong practitioners stand for are universal values, and the suffering they experience is also one of the worst in the modern society, both in terms of the persecution’s scale and severity. Yet, very few news media have covered this major human rights violations since the persecution began 22 years ago.

Mr. Li said that almost everyone that he had spoken with during the award ceremony was interested in this book because they had not heard much about this topic. While the CCP suppresses Falun Gong practitioners for their belief and efforts to expose the brutality, many news media in the western world have also succumbed to pressure from the CCP and ignored its crimes against practitioners.

“The breadth and depth of the book also offer an invaluable reference for government officials, scholars, and policymakers in all countries,” said Mr. Li. Those who have read this book are often shocked by the gravity of the persecution and are considering what actions to take to end the persecution that has been going on for so long.

Sense of Responsibility

Mr. Li said he participated in this book project out of a sense of responsibility. “It had a noble cause. So many people outside of China do not know what’s going on in China – numerous families broken apart by the persecution and many children orphaned when their parents died as a result of the persecution,” he explained. He said that Minghui.org has published a vast amount of firsthand information on the persecution and he felt compelled to take part in the project and let the world know about the persecution.

Mr. Li didn’t know how the award committee chose the winners, but he believed that the book won because of its unique content and factual information. The persecution facts presented in the book were things that the award committee members had never known before. And another winning point could also be that the book is so well-organized, something the committee could not ignore.

Additionally, the book indicates that many businesses and countries who have dealings with China can no longer sweep the CCP’s human rights abuses under the rug. Mr. Li said this book is a very heavy report, which he believed has also made the award committee think carefully about the impact of exposing the CCP’s brutality.

Mr. Li was also encouraged by the positive feedback the book has generated. Peter Westmore, former president of the National Civic Council (NCC) in Australia, and some other critics have highly recommended the book.

“For those concerned about the misuse of Chinese power around the world, this book is an essential source of information. It offers over 430 pages of the most exhaustive documentation of the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China, and should be in every library and parliamentary office in Australia,” wrote Westmore in the August 8, 2020, issue of News Weekly.

Hoping the Book Reaches More People

Mr. Li said he was bittersweet upon learning of winning the award. Normally it’d be a joyful moment when winning any award. However, the theme and content of the book concerns a very heavy topic, the persecution of millions of Falun Gong practitioners that has been going on for more than two decades.

He said, “I hope more people can pick up the book and read about what kind of the persecution Falun Gong practitioners have been subjected to, what kind of people Falun Gong practitioners are, and what their values are. I hope people would start to think about what the most important thing to us is and what we should be paying attention to.”

Chinese version available

Category: Overview of persecution