Almost 2000 Confirmed Arrested or Harassed for Faith
In the months of September and October 2021, Minghui.org received 764 reports of Falun Gong practitioners being arrested and 1,199 harassed for their faith. The nearly 2000 cases mark an increase of gratuitous police violence, prosecution of disabled persons, and detainment of family members.
The cases from these two months also bring the number of known arrest and harassment cases reported from the beginning of 2021 to 4,939 and 9,435, respectively.
Hebei (353), Shandong (340), Sichuan (249), Liaoning (129), Hubei (128) and Jilin (107) were the top six provinces with the most total cases of arrests and harassments. Another 17 provinces had double-digit cases and 5 regions recorded single-digit cases.
Among the total 1,963 targeted practitioners (764 arrested and 1,199 harassed), 36 were between the age of 65 and 70, 105 were in their 70s, 53 were in their 80s and 2 were in their 90s.
As a continuation of the “Zero-out” harassment campaign that was launched in 2020, the authorities targeted the practitioners and sometimes their family members, in attempts to coerce all practitioners on the Chinese Communist Party’s blacklist to renounce Falun Gong. This includes some practitioners who were tortured into disability or became incapacitated years ago during previous incarceration for their faith.
Trends and Select Cases
The reported cases mark increased police violence and persecution of those disabled for their faith. The cases also show a new trend of Falun Gong practitioners family members increasingly being targeted.
For distributing materials about her faith, a 77-year-old woman was intercepted by police and violently abused. Police pushed the elderly lady to the ground, putting her in a choke hold, and used a metal bar to pry open her mouth when she refused to reveal her name.
Police also beat a woman from Shanxi severely, breaking seven of her ribs.
Two paralyzed men also face prosecution for their faith. Their paralysis was caused by previous incarceration for their faith, after being arrested for clarifying the truth about their practice to others.
One man was shocked with electric buttons for days on end; unable to withstand the torture, he jumped from a building in 2010, rendering him paralyzed.
Another man became paralyzed after a metal brace in his back broke during incarceration. Yet he still faces prosecution.
These last two months have also seen Falun Gong practitioner’s family members being facing repercussions for their support and sometimes mere affiliation with the practitioners.
A young man has been arrested for supporting his mother’s posting a banner celebrating the anniversary of Falun Gong’s introduction to the public.
A woman’s husband also faces incarceration for hiring a lawyer to represent her.
Below are select cases.
Ms. Ma Fengqiong, a 77-year-old resident of Mianyang City, Sichuan Province, was savagely beaten by five police officers after being reported for talking to people about Falun Gong.
Ma went to a local market to distribute informational materials about Falun Gong on September 1, 2021. After a man reported her, five officers showed up to arrest her.
When Ma refused to go with them, one officer went behind her and knocked her facedown to the ground. He then handcuffed her, knelt on her back, put her in a choke hold, and tried to open her mouth with a finger.
As she refused to comply, another officer used a metal bar to pry open her mouth, loosening her front teeth and injuring her tongue. Other officers then pulled her up, pushed her into the police car, and took her to the police station.
She refused to tell them her name and tried to explain the facts about Falun Gong. The officers verbally abused her in return.
Later, seeing that Ma had been severely injured, they took her to the hospital. She was given an injection, but was not told what medication it was.
Ma was later forced to reveal her name. Due to her age, the police gave her one month of criminal detention and fined her 1,000 yuan on the grounds that two Falun Gong flyers were found in her purse. The police didn’t detain her right away, deciding to let her go home to recover.
When she returned home, she found that there four inch-long cuts on either side of her neck. Her lips and face were also swollen, with her lower front teeth slanted and bleeding, and her tongue was black and blue. A large area under her knee was scratched, and her hands, arms, instep, and toes were swollen and bruised.
Targeted Despite Physical Condition
Mr. Lyu, 57, has spent a grueling 13.5 years in the past 22 years behind bars, for persisting in his faith. Despite becoming paralyzed in custody in 2010, authorities continued to be target him. He was arrested on Jun 20, 2021 and now faces prosecution.
In 2005, Lyu intercepted TV signals to broadcast a video exposing the crimes of the Chinese Communist Party. He was arrested and sentenced to 10 years and prison guards frequently shocked him with electric batons for hours at a time in retaliation for his actions.
In 2010, because he could no longer tolerate the extreme physical pain, he jumped off a building roof. His tail bone was injured and he became paralyzed and incontinent. He still walks with crutches.
Despite being incapacitated, Liu was targeted earlier this year for his faith.The police broke into his home and arrested him on June 20, 2021, for “sabotaging law enforcement.”
They confiscated his Falun Gong books and personal belongings. After seeing that the couplets on his door frame that praised Falun Gong, the police accused him of promoting the practice. They then tore down the couplets and took them as evidence, after Lyu’s neighbor refused to testify against him.
Lyu was transferred to Yaojia Detention Center on June 26.
As Lyu was incontinent, the detention center staff initially did not want to accept him. Police, however, coerced the staff members to comply and promised to bring Lyu diapers. They then called Lyu’s family to tell them to bring diapers to the detention center. However, Lyu never received them, making his life very difficult.
Lyu’s family is extremely worried about his current living conditions. They repeatedly demanded his release on medical bail, but authorities have denied their requests.
On May 8, 2021, a banner with the words “Celebrate 5.13 World Falun Dafa Day” appeared in the Gudao Area of Shengli Oilfield, Shandong Province. Ms. Wang Ying and Ms. Bai Wenxing, who hung up the banner, were arrested about two months later. Wang’s son, Mr. Li Long, who doesn’t practice Falun Gong, was also arrested and detained for supporting his mother’s faith.
At 7 a.m. on July 15, 2021, about 11 police officers broke into Li’s home without showing any ID or searching warrant. While four of them held him down on the sofa, another two arrested Ms. Wang and took her away.
An officer named Zhang Rui put on gloves to search the apartment. When Li asked him to show a search warrant, Zhang took out a “Searching Certificate”. The certificate cited Article 87 of Public Security Administration Punishment Law of the People’s Republic of China.
Li said, “As far as I know, Article 87 is only for searching public places. If you want to search a private residence, you must have a search warrant; otherwise, what you are doing is illegal.” Zhang was infuriated and ordered three officers to handcuff Li.
The officers proceeded to search every room and videotaped Li in each, to make it seem that he had given permission for the search. They put confiscated items, including two Falun Gong books, a computer, an external hard drive, an MP3 player, a handbag, two cellphones and six flash drives, into a box labeled “evidence box.”
They also confiscated Li’s home key and car key and searched Li’s car, before taking Li to their police station. Li was forced to sit in a metal chair and had his hair sample collected and blood drawn.
Although Li and Wang were soon released, Li again arrested on August 27. The police searched his body, confiscated his keys and brought him to an interrogation room. They did not allow him to call his lawyer and fabricated the interrogation transcript, claiming that they had the right to choose what to record and what not to record.
Li refused to sign the transcript. He was released around midnight.
Based on an original report from Minghui.org: