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    2010 Annual Report

Escalated Persecution During 10th Anniversary Year

2010 Annual Report

April 25, 2010 | 06:13 pm

Advancing the Communist Party’s decade-long persecution against Falun Gong was a key priority in a nationwide crackdown implemented in 2009 surrounding “sensitive” anniversaries. The crackdown was led by top Party leaders—including Vice President Xi Jinping and Politburo Standing Committee member Zhou Yongkang—and carried out by the public security bureau (PSB) and local Party branches throughout the country. 

As in previous years, the 6-10 Office played a leading role in targeting Falun Gong practitioners, while “Olympics-style” repression campaigns were carried out in Harbin and Shanghai surrounding international events. 

 

“Project 6521”

According to multiple media reports, a special task force, referred to within the Communist Party system as “Project 6521,” was established to increase security around sensitive anniversaries in 2009, namely the 60th anniversary of Communist Party rule, the 50th anniversary of uprisings in Tibet, the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre, and the 10th anniversary since the crackdown on Falun Gong began. [1] The task force was reportedly charged with increasing surveillance of dissidents, human rights activists and Falun Gong adherents, tightening censorship in the official media, and preempting possible protests related to the anniversaries. The entity and related bodies for maintaining “social stability” were activated throughout all levels of the Party apparatus, with government entities acting under their orders as well.

The 6521 task force was reportedly headed by Vice-President Xi Jinping, who has been tapped as a likely successor to Hu Jintao. Among his deputies to the task was Zhou Yongkang, head of the Party’s network of Political-Legal Committees and the official who replaced Luo Gan in 2007 as the politburo member overseeing the 6-10 Office. [2] 

6-10 Office Nationwide Mobilization 

As in previous years, the extralegal 610 Office continued to lead measures taken against Falun Gong practitioners. Official Chinese Communist Party websites from across China discuss the strengthening of 6-10 operations in 2009 with the purpose of “handling” and “disposing of” Falun Gong. 

“The Municipal Party Committee’s 6-10 Office has established two task forces,” states a posting dated December 2008 from Leiyang in Hunan province.[3] The “synthesizing group” is responsible for intelligence information, investigation and research, maintaining secrecy, administrative affairs, and handling personnel of political and ideological work. The “education group,” says the online report, is responsible for “struggling” (douzheng) against Falun Gong, cracking down on the distribution of Falun Gong literature, and carrying out the education and forced “transformation” of Falun Gong practitioners.  

Official websites cite heightened activity by 6-10 Office branches against local Falun Gong adherents in the run-up to the ten-year anniversary of the persecution’s launch on July 20. A May 2009 posting on the official website for Qidong in Jiangsu province, for instance, states that the town’s 6-10 Office is to strengthen and consolidate its transformation efforts against Falun Gong. [4] 

According to the Congressional-Executive Commission in its 2009 Annual Report (emphasis added): 

District officials in Guiyang city, Guizhou province, reported on ‘deployment arrangements’ taken to implement two ‘monitoring and control measures’ during the 10th anniversary of the April 25 Falun Gong protest: (1) ‘take strict precautions to prevent ‘Falun Gong’ from conducting illegal activities and putting up posters and distributing propaganda materials’; and (2) ‘local police stations, community neighborhood committees, and public work units must strengthen efforts to root out and strike against Falun Gong . . . and in a fundamental way, eliminate hidden dangers.’

In Shanghai’s Nanhui district, Party officials called an ‘emergency meeting’ to focus on the ‘April 25 period,’ urging police and government officials to ‘sharpen their vigilance’ and ‘strengthen coordinated warfare’ against Falun Gong. 

In Tianjin municipality, officials increased police patrols and intelligence gathering focused on Falun Gong practitioners during the 20th anniversary of the violent suppression of the 1989 Tiananmen protests. [5]

“Olympics-style” Crackdowns in Heilongjiang and Shanghai

The Falun Dafa Information Center received multiple reports during 2009 indicating that Chinese security forces had begun applying Beijing Olympics-type restrictions around other international events. 

2009 Winter Universiade Sporting Event 

From February 18 to 28, 2009, in Heilongjiang province’s Harbin city, an international collegiate winter sporting event—the 24th Winter Universiade—was held. In the months preceding it, the Chinese authorities embarked on a series of extensive security arrangements outlined in statements on official websites and in state-run media. 

Among the measures undertaken was a three-month-long province-wide “strike hard” campaign from October to December 2008. Some officials referred to the crackdown as “Operation Autumn Wind” and likened it to pre-Olympic operations. Among the campaign’s primary targets were Falun Gong practitioners. “In the meantime, we should strike harder at ‘Falun Gong,’” Ding Jian, head of Harbin’s Nangang district is cited as saying in a speech from December 2008. [6] 

Corresponding directives were issued on official websites from other cities in the province, in part because the event was accompanied by a torch relay that traveled throughout the region. These included orders in Qitaihe that:

Specific personnel from each street and town should … pay close attention to the movements of Falun Gong followers, and some other illegal religious groups. [7]

Similarly, a police department in Heihe cited as among its top ten “prevention” goals to:

…stop Falun Gong followers, key dissidents …from entering competition sites; and prevent people petitioning at the city-level police department from going further up to provincial level. [8] 

As a result of such efforts, during the months prior to the games, dozens and possibly hundreds, of Falun Gong practitioners were arbitrarily detained by the authorities because of their religious identity. In both 2008 and 2009, Heilongjiang was one of the deadliest provinces for Falun Gong adherents, indicating the high risk of torture facing these individuals.

2010 Shanghai Expo

In recent months, the Center has received reports of a heightened security environment in Shanghai as the city prepares for the 2010 World Expo. In the first half of 2009, at least 66 Falun Gong adherents in Shanghai were abducted by security agents in connection to the World Expo. Reports from the municipality’s Yangpu and Pudong districts indicate that authorities have offered monetary rewards of up to 10,000 Yuan to citizens who report on Falun Gong adherents, particularly those engaged in distributing literature or other information about the persecution.


[1] Ching Cheong, ‘‘China Acts To Defuse ‘Crisis Year,’’’ Singapore Straits Times, March 3, 2009; Michael Wines, ‘‘China’s Leaders See a Calendar Full of Trouble,’’ New York Times, March 9, 2009: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/11/world/asia/11china.html?_r=1.

[2] Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), “2009 Annual report,” p. 125, 357; Cary Huang, ‘‘Taskforces Set Up To Keep Lid on Protests,’’ South China Morning Post, February 28, 2009 

[3] Page capture available here: http://media.faluninfo.net/media/doc/2009/06/leiyang.JPG

[4] Page captures available here: http://media.faluninfo.net/media/doc/2009/06/qidong-1.JPG and here: http://media.faluninfo.net/media/doc/2009/06/qidong-2.JPG 

[5]  CECC 2009, p. 121

[6] Nangang Info Net, “Comrade Ding Jian’s Speech at the First Leadership Team Meeting of Serving ‘Winter Universiade’ in the Whole District,” December 4, 2008; http://www.hrbng.gov.cn/public/AA/index.jsp?TemplateNameN=AA&TemplateXMLName=1&CNumberN=12722&ArticleTitleN=1320

[7] Qitaihe News Net, “Taoshan District Ensures Safe, Stable and Clean Environment for Winter Universiade,” December 23, 2008,; http://www.qthnews.com/news/content/2008-12/23/content_47753.htm

[8] Heilongjiang Economy Net, “Wudalianchi Police Department: Set ‘10 Preventions’ Goal and Ensure ‘Winter Universiade’ safety,” February 21, 2009; http://www.hljjjb.com/zf1.asp?ArticleID=4864.

 

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