(Minghui.org) Since April 11, 2022, at least nine Falun Gong practitioners in Qiqihar City, Heilongjiang Province have been arrested for their faith. While all have been released on bail at the time of writing, the police are planning to submit their cases to the prosecutor and seek prison sentences against them.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.

In early 2022, the Qiqihar City Police Department held a meeting attended by all local police forces in seven districts and nine counties to ramp up arrests of Falun Gong practitioners.

Chen Dong, the deputy mayor of Qiqihar and head of the Qiqihar City Police Department, ordered the police to follow, monitor and harass local practitioners, especially those who persisted in raising awareness about the persecution during the pandemic. 

The operation gained support from Guo Xiaofeng, the head of the Qiqihar City Political and Legal Affairs Committee, an extra-judiciary agency overseeing the public security and judiciary branches and also orchestrating the persecution policy of Falun Gong. 

Dubbed “Net Closing In Operation,” the latest police sweep was carried out by the Longjiang County Domestic Security Office, the Tiefeng Police Department, the Nanpu Police Station, the Donghu Police Station, the Wulong Police Station and several other police stations in the Tiefeng District. 

According to available information, at least nine practitioners were arrested, including Zhang Wanjie, Li Dongmei and her sister Li Lamei, Zhu Xiuqing, Li Fengqin, Xia Tingting, and practitioners surnamed Yu, Weng and Zhen. The police ransacked their homes and confiscated Falun Gong-related items as well as their IDs and house registrations. Zhang Wanjie’s car was also impounded. 

It has been reported that the police have fabricated “evidence” against the practitioners, alleging that Zhang Wanjie was the ringleader of a criminal organization in which all the other practitioners were active members. Some practitioners noticed that the police already had the interrogation record ready before ever asking them questions. 

Since the pandemic broke out in 2020, the persecution of Falun Gong has remained unabated in Qiqihar. According to information collected by Minghui, at least 50 practitioners were arrested and 28 harassed in 2020. Another three practitioners were sentenced to prison and one died as a result of the persecution. In 2021, at least 15 practitioners were arrested and 24 harassed. Five were sentenced and two passed away. 

After the communist regime imposed strict surveillance of local residents as pandemic prevention measures, the authorities also used the surveillance data to target Falun Gong practitioners who stepped out to talk to people about the persecution of their faith.

Perpetrators' contact information:

Guo Xiaofeng (郭晓锋), head, Qiqihar City Political and Legal Affairs Committee: +86-13314654777, +86-452-2791601, +86-452-2796688Chen Dong (陈东), head, Qiqihar City Police DepartmentWang Qinfang (王勤芳), deputy head, Qiqihar City Police DepartmentXu Jiang (徐江), deputy secretary, Qiqihar City Political and Legal Affairs CommitteeQiao Haidong (乔海东), deputy secretary, Qiqihar City Political and Legal Affairs CommitteeYu Hongwei (于宏伟), deputy secretary, Qiqihar City Political and Legal Affairs CommitteeMeng Xing (孟醒), secretary, Tiefeng District Political and Legal Affairs Committee: +86-452-2188606Guo Shibo (郭士波), head of Tiefeng District Police Department: +86-452-2183708Sun Zhiwen (孙志文), secretary of Longsha District Political and Legal Affairs Committee: +86-452-2338855

(More perpetrators’ contact information is available in the original Chinese article.)