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Woman Brutally Tortured at Elderly Care Center in Hunan Province, China

Jan. 5, 2022 |   By a Minghui correspondent in Hunan Province, China

(Minghui.org) “I heard that you don’t have any hair in your pubic area. I’ll now pull all your hair out as well!” said an aide at Zhongxinyi Elderly Care Center in Huaihua City, Hunan Province to Ms. Liu Yu’e, one day prior to her release. The aide proceeded to slap her in the face and smash her head against a metal bed.

Ms. Liu, a native of Huaihua City, Hunan Province, was arrested in her hometown on July 31, 2021, for talking to people about Falun Gong, a mind and body practice that has been persecuted in China since 1999. She was taken to Zhongxinyi Elderly Care Center, where she endured 3.5 months of torture, including beating, force-feeding of unknown drugs, pinching the nipples, plucking pubic hair, and jabbing with needles. She was also forced to pay 18,000 yuan for her stay at the care center.

Ms. Liu began to practice Falun Gong in January 2006 and soon recovered from sinus problems and neurasthenia. She felt compelled to tell people that Falun Gong was nothing like what is depicted by the Chinese communist regime. Her simple act, however, led to multiple arrests and detention in both Hunan Province and Guangdong Province (where she lived on and off for years). 

How an Elderly Care Center Became a Place for Persecuting Falun Gong Practitioners

Zhongxinyi Elderly Care Center is a nursing home that provides both health and personal care services. It is owned by the Zhongxinyi Nursing Home Group and the Huaihua Zhongxinyi Hospital, the former launched on August 24, 2020, and the latter on December 29 that year.

The first and second floors at Zhongxinyi Elderly Care Center are for the hospital operation and the elderly care, respectively. There is a psychiatric department located on the third floor, where Ms. Liu was tortured.

The elderly care center also works with the Huaihua No. 4 People’s Hospital (originally Huaihua Psychiatric Hospital), which is notorious for persecuting Falun Gong practitioners by injecting them with unknown substances and using violence on them during the brainwashing sessions. For practitioners who refused to take any medicine, the authorities would secretly put medicine in their food or use violence to force them to take the medicine.

Many practitioners were subjected to violent drug administration while being detained at the brainwashing sessions, prisons or the psychiatric hospital in Huaihua. The drugs caused them to drool, walk slowly, have slurred speech, tremble, feel nausea and lose consciousness. Some practitioners died as a result. 

The Many Torture Methods Used on Ms. Liu

Ms. Liu went out on the morning of July 31, 2021, to tell people about Falun Gong when she was reported to the police. Two officers from Hutian Police Station arrested her and took her to the police station. One officer found Falun Gong materials inside Ms. Liu’s bag and threatened to burn it. Another officer asked to read the material but was rejected.

After a third officer called their supervisor, Ms. Liu was transferred to a place she couldn’t recognize. A plainclothes police officer came over to ask her, while she was still inside the car, for her name and address. She didn’t respond.

Afterward, Ms. Liu was taken to Zhongxinyi Elderly Care Center. The police told Yang Xiangjun, an aide, that Ms. Liu refused to talk. Ms. Liu was then taken to the third floor of the building and given the number: “7-31,” the date she was admitted. She was either called by the number or “the unnamed person.”

Upon arrival, the psychiatric department staff members ordered Ms. Liu to shower. When she refused, a few nurses stripped her and forced her to shower. Afterward, she was given the patient uniform and taken to another room for a Covid-19 PCR test. Ms. Liu was slapped in the face several times by aide Yang when she refused to cooperate. Yang grabbed her hair and slapped her in the face again when she refused to cooperate for a CT scan on the first floor. Ms. Liu insisted that she is healthy and she shouldn’t cooperate with them in the persecution.

It was dinner time by the time she was brought to the third floor. As Ms. Liu wasn’t given any shoes to wear after the shower, she sat barefoot in the hallway. She was locked in a room about five or six square meters after dinner with only a bed but without any sink or restroom.

The next morning, Ms. Liu had her blood forcibly drawn. As she refused to cooperate, a young male aide hit her until her face and eyes became swollen.

Ms. Liu stayed in the room for about a week and didn’t sleep on the bed. She went on a hunger strike for the first three days and sat cross-legged on the ground. As she was on a hunger strike, the nurses used a metal spoon to force open her mouth and force-fed her water while hitting her. Ms. Liu decided to eat on the third day.

However, the nurses began to order Ms. Liu to take unknown medicine. She refused and was again force-fed while being beaten. This lasted nearly 20 days and each force-feeding resulted in her mouth becoming bloody, and her teeth loosened.

Torture re-enactment: Tied to the bed

Ms. Liu went on hunger strike several times and was met with humiliation and violence. She was tied to the metal bed many times, slapped until her face and eyes were swollen, and kicked on her chest until she had difficulties breathing. Sometimes the aides grabbed her hair and smashed her head against the bed. They also stripped her and pinched her nipples and pulled her pubic hair.

Torture illustration: Force-feeding

The nurses force-fed Ms. Liu by inserting a tube from the nose into her stomach until it bled and blood was all over the place. They force-fed her medicine, soup, and water. To forcefully inject Ms. Liu, they tied her up and beat her, and jabbed her everywhere. Aide Yang, who had no medical training, was even asked to poke Ms. Liu on her hands and chest with needles.

A day before her release, an aide said to Ms. Liu, “I heard that you don’t have any hair in your pubic area. I’ll now pull all your hair out as well!” She proceeded to slap her in the face and smash her head against the metal bed. Lots of hair was scattered on the ground. Ms. Liu’s hair continued to fall out after she returned home.

It is not known if the care center also treated other patients the same way as they had treated Ms. Liu.

Someone once told Ms. Liu to quickly find a way to get out of the care center or she might be tortured to death. One day, she asked a nurse to contact her family as she didn’t have her phone with her. Her request was rejected as the nurse said that this is not their responsibility. Later, she learned that the patients admitted there all had their phones confiscated and they were not allowed to keep their ID cards or wear any jewelry. They were not allowed to leave without permission. There were some patients who were sent over by their families but more were sent in by the police, including people who were drunk, lost their ID or belongings, migrant workers, or homeless people. Some were sent in after they quarreled with the police. 

There was a man from another city who was sent in by the police. His family was worried and searched for him. When they finally found him at the care center and wanted to bring him home, the care center asked for 20,000 yuan from the family. As his family couldn’t afford it, they had to return home to earn more money before coming back. This man stayed in the care center for more than six months.

When Ms. Liu was arrested, no one knew she was missing. Her friends only knew that she had gone out on the morning of July 31 to talk to people about Falun Gong and didn’t return home the following few days. After feeling that something was amiss, her friends went searching for her in the local detention centers but couldn’t find her. Some even went back to her parents’ home to search for her. A relative of her reported her disappearance to the police in early October, hoping that the police could help to find her. Afterward, the relative received a letter about Ms. Liu’s whereabouts.

On November 15, several of Ms. Liu’s relatives went to Zhongxinyi Elderly Care Center to ask for her release. The authorities refused to release her because she practiced Falun Gong and wanted confirmation from the police before they could release her. As the authorities refused to tell the relatives which police station has the authority to make the decision, the relatives went to every police station in the city, but to no avail.

Afterward, the relatives went back and insisted that the care center release Ms. Liu, arguing that one’s spiritual belief is basic human rights and they threatened to file a complaint against them if they refused to release her. The care center eventually released Ms. Liu but charged the relatives 18,000 yuan as food expenses.

Ms. Liu returned home after 3.5 months at the elderly care center.

Previous Arrests and Imprisonment

Prior to the recent arrest. Ms. Liu was given two forced labor camp terms and held many times at various brainwashing centers. She was also sentenced to four years in prison.

On the morning of May 21, 2006, Ms. Liu was distributing Falun Gong materials in Taoyuan Village, Nanshan District, Shenzhen City, Guangdong Province when she was reported to the police and arrested. She was given a three-year forced labor camp term. Shortly after her release, she was taken to the Shenzhen Brainwashing Center by the Nanshan District 610 Office, where she was persecuted for more than a month. After she was released, the local residential committee frequently harassed her at home and ordered her to sign documents slandering Falun Gong.

Ms. Liu was arrested by Nanshan District 610 Office on October 22, 2010, and taken to Shenzhen Brainwashing Center again. As she refused to be transformed and went on a hunger strike, the brainwashing center arranged many instructors to brainwash her one after another in an attempt to drain her energy and weaken her willpower. She was released after more than a month. As she was worried that she would be persecuted again, she lived away from home and only came back occasionally to visit her family.

Ms. Liu was arrested again on April 8, 2014, this time in her hometown in Huaihua City, Hunan Province, for visiting a couple who practice Falun Gong, without knowing they had been arrested. She was held in Huaihua Detention Center for 44 days.

Ms. Liu filed a criminal complaint in 2015 against Jiang Zemin, the former head of the Chinese Communist Party for initiating the persecution of Falun Gong. She was arrested in Shenzhen City, Guangdong Province on September 5 and detained her for 15 days.

Ms. Liu was talking to people about Falun Gong at Sihai Park in Shenzhen City on February 28, 2017, when police from Zhaoshang Police Station arrested her and took her to Nanshan Detention Center. The police put a black hood over her head and took her back home to ransack her house. In order to buy daily necessities in the detention center, she was told to sign a document. When she refused, the prison guards threatened to torture her and not allow her to buy any toilet paper. Ms. Liu didn’t eat for two days to avoid using the restroom and was taken to Nanshan Hospital for force-feeding. She was handcuffed to a metal chair for a long time and forced to press her thumbprints on documents.

Torture re-enactment: handcuffed to a metal chair

Ms. Liu was sentenced to four years and taken to the Guangzhou Province Women’s Prison in July 2017. Because she refused to be transformed, the inmates didn’t allow her to sleep and forced her to stand or sit on a small stool day and night. Sometimes, she was not allowed to shower or use the restroom for several days. She was also forced to clean a 700-seat cafeteria all by herself.

Appendix: Ms. Liu Yu'e's medical bills (in Chinese only)

Related report:

Abuse of Ms. Liu Yu'e Continues at Guangzhou Prison