The Persecution: a Brief History
On June 7, 1999, about a month before the suppression of Falun Gong began, Chinese President Jiang Zemin circulated a letter entitled "Comrade Jiang Zemin's Speech at a Meeting of the Politburo of the Central Committee Regarding Handling and Resolving the 'Falun Gong' Issue Without Delay."
In this letter, Jiang initiated the suppression policy to be used against Falun Gong. He ordered the establishment of what he called "a leadership group that will specialize in handling the 'Falun Gong' issue," and appointed the three chiefs to the group including the head of the Political and Judiciary Committee, Luo Gan.
Under Jiang's direct order, on June 10, 1999, the Chinese Communist Party Central Committee officially set up an office for the "leadership group" and named it "the Head Office for Handling the Falun Gong Issue," also called the "610 Office." In nature, the "610 Office" is very similar to the Cultural Revolution Group of the Chinese Communist Party Central Committee, a product of the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s and 70s, which led the horrifying persecution and murder of numerous innocent citizens during the "Cultural Revolution."
Documentation from the testimonials of multiple, sometimes hundreds, of witnesses shows that for the past four years, Jiang Zemin's regime has constantly issued various secret orders against Falun Gong through the "610 Office," from the directive "Physically destroy Falun Gong practitioners" to "Falun Gong practitioners' being tortured to death is counted as suicide" and "Do not identify the body. Cremate it locally."
On July 20, 1999, it suddenly became illegal for 70 million people to practice their spiritual beliefs. On that day, Chinese Communist Party leader Jiang Zemin banned the spiritual practice of Falun Gong, affecting an estimated 70-100 million people in China. Falun Gong practitioners responded by filing legal appeals with a government agency set up for this purpose.
The response from Jiang's regime's Mass arrests, beatings, and unlawful detentions of thousands of Falun Gong adherents' human rights abuses that have been verified by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the U.S. Department of State, and other organizations. Amnesty International awarded Jiang the title "human rights scoundrel of the year" in 2000.
The first fatality due to the persecution came in September of 1999. To date, more than 1,023 verifiable deaths attributable to the persecution have occurred, almost all confirmed by Amnesty International. Given the thousands of practitioners that are missing, and the difficulty in getting information out of China, it is safe to say that what is known is only the tip of the iceberg...
Those unwilling to give up the practice lose their jobs, their position in society, and, oftentimes, their homes and family support. Systematic torture is now widespread; using methods such as shocking with electric batons, injecting toxic and nerve damaging drugs, beating, rape, forced abortions, mutilation, hanging from shackles, forced immolation, and denial of sleep and lavatory privileges. And then...one's family or work unit is sent the bill. No means are spared in the attempt to get practitioners to "renounce" their beliefs.
The persecution has been taken overseas, too. Documented actions include hacking websites, sending e-mail viruses, use of spies to infiltrate groups of practitioners, vandalizing of property, phone tapping, threatening practitioners and their families, phycial assault, and using economic threats to pressure US officials.
Outside of China, the battle to end the persecution is as much alive as it is within. From walking in parades, to candlelight vigils, from handing out fliers on street corners, to the SOS! Global RescueWalk... the truth of the persecution is finding its way into the public consciousness. For those who practice Falun Gong, cultivation has moved far beyond just personal development and refinement. Now, it is understood that what is at stake is not so much individual interests, but rather, the well-being of higher principles, the understanding of these principles by others, and the manifestation of these principles in our modern society.
World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong
Mail Address：P.O. Box 84， New york, NY 10116
Website： http://www.upholdjustice.org/, http://www.zhuichaguoji.org/