Amnesty International Calls for Urgent Action in Changchun, China As Murder Count Rises

Changchun Adopts Police State Methods Against Falun Gong, Two Men Killed by Police

NEW YORK, March 21, 2002 (Falun Dafa Information Center) – Days after Amnesty International called for urgent action to protect Falun Gong practitioners from police and officials in Changchun, China, reports of two more deaths from police abuse surface amidst martial-law-like conditions.

On March 15th, Amnesty International headquarters in London issued an Urgent Action statement for Falun Gong practitioners in Changchun. “Dozens of suspected members of the Falun Gong spiritual movement have reportedly been detained during a security crackdown in Changchun City, Jilin Province,” the Urgent Action stated. “Amnesty International believes they are at serious risk of torture or ill-treatment…police ‘stop-and-search’ checkpoints have reportedly been established across the city and dozens of alleged Falun Gong practitioners have been detained.”

Amidst an on-going citywide effort to round up Falun Gong practitioners in Changchun, local police are under orders to “kill without mercy” anyone distributing information exposing Jiang Zemin’s organized persecution of Falun Gong practitioners.

Two Men Beaten to Death in Last Few Days

On March 18th, Falun Gong practitioner Liu Yi (male, 34 years old, from Qingnian Road, Luyuan area, Changchun), was beaten to death by police officers from the Luyuan Public Security Sub-bureau in Changchun, according to sources in China. As of March 20th, Liu Yi’s remains were being held at the People’s Liberation Army 208 Hospital. The police are monitoring Liu Yi’s family members 24 hours a day and taking measures to ensure information of Liu Yi’s death does not leak to the media.

On March 16, a male Falun Gong practitioner believed to be in his 30s and an employee of the Industry and Commerce Bank was beaten to death by police at the Jincheng Public Security Sub-bureau in Changchun. According to a witness, the man bore several visible wounds and showed signs of internal bleeding from the beatings. Additionally, his body was left extremely “contorted” from the abuse, this source reported. The man’s exact identity remains unknown as police are blocking all information related to this case.

These deaths mark the first known cases since the large-scale round up of Falun Gong practitioners began on March 6th, the day following the Falun Gong video broadcasts sixteen days ago in Changchun in which the broadcast signals of several major cable news stations in the area were overridden to send video footage exposing the massive persecution and government-sponsored murder of Falun Gong practitioners in China.

The media, controlled by the state in China, has been one of the communist party’s most effective weapons in a three-year campaign to defame and “annihilate” Falun Gong. Consequently, these broadcasts were seen by many analysts as a major break-through in the effort to reveal the persecution of Falun Gong to the people in China.

Background

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a practice of meditation and exercises with teachings based on the universal principle of “Truthfulness-Compassion-Tolerance.” It is a practice that was taught in private for thousands of years before being made public in 1992 by Mr. Li Hongzhi. Falun Gong has roots in traditional Chinese culture, but it is distinct and separate from other practices in China, such as the religions of Buddhism and Taoism. Since its introduction in 1992, it quickly spread by word of mouth throughout China, and is now practiced in over 50 countries.

With government estimates of as many as 100 million practicing Falun Gong, China’s President Jiang Zemin outlawed the peaceful practice in July 1999, fearful of anything touching the hearts and minds of more citizens than the Communist Party. Unable to crush the spirit of millions who had experienced improved health and positive life changes from Falun Gong, Jiang’s regime has intensified its propaganda campaign to turn public opinion against the practice while quietly imprisoning, torturing and even murdering those who practice it.

The Falun Dafa Information Center has verified details of over 385 deaths since the persecution of Falun Gong in China began in 1999. Government officials inside China, however, report that the actual death toll is well over 1,600. Over 100,000 have been detained, with more than 20,000 being sentenced to forced labor camps without trial.