The Chinese Communist Party’s campaign against Falun Gong remains one of the largest and most severe instances of religious persecution in the world today. The group’s resilience in the face of such pressure and its successes countering persecution are an equally important part of the Falun Gong story, critical to understanding contemporary China.
Indeed, a 2017 Freedom House report found that “millions of people in China continue to practice Falun Gong” and that “this represents a striking failure of the CCP’s security apparatus.” These individuals are subject to widespread surveillance, arbitrary detention, imprisonment, torture, and extrajudicial execution. Increasingly, the CCP’s anti-Falun Gong efforts extend outside China’s borders. Yet the Falun Gong story appears infrequently in international headlines, offering an opportunity for those covering it to truly have an impact.
As China’s international influence has expanded, its state-media narratives have seeped into global coverage, especially regarding a topic as sensitive as Falun Gong. Academic studies and the Falun Dafa Information Center’s own observations have noted a systemic problem of inaccurate and demonizing state propaganda about Falun Gong appearing in foreign media articles, including ones that otherwise expose horrific abuses being committed against practitioners in China.
Whether you are a journalist planning to write an article about Falun Gong, mention it in passing, or would simply like to learn more about Falun Gong and its treatment in China, below are a few key references and two videos we believe would be most helpful for understanding Falun Gong, avoiding common state propaganda pitfalls, and ensuring accurate reporting. A more comprehensive set of resources and third-party reports can be found to the right.
It is extremely risky for a Falun Gong practitioner inside China to speak with a foreign journalist. However, there is a wealth of individuals with firsthand knowledge of what is happening on the ground in China who now reside safely outside the country. They include thousands of Falun Gong refugees and former prisoners of conscience, as well as family members of those currently jailed, Chinese lawyers who had Falun Gong clients, and even former Chinese officials who defected.
Several journalists and human rights organizations have in recent years tapped this resource to draw out valuable information that would be difficult to obtain inside China, given the political sensitivity and heavy censorship surrounding Falun Gong.
The Falun Dafa Information Center is happy to help identify and provide contact information for Falun Gong refugees, other Chinese eyewitnesses, and foreign experts. Email email@example.com and we will assist in any way we can.
Facts and figures quantifying the persecution of Falun Gong in China
The effect of media characterizations on events inside China.
Sample Quotations and References about Falun Gong by Human Rights Groups and Other Third Parties
Why Falun Gong and the persecution against it matter at home and abroad
The suppression of Falun Gong is time and again traced back to one man: Jiang Zemin.
According to information compiled by Minghui.org, another 139 Falun Gong practitioners were confirmed to have been sentenced to prison for their faith since July 2018. Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline based on the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. Since the CCP started persecuting the practice in July 1999, many practitioners have […]
The Haizhu District Court in Guangzhou City sentenced a college professor to three and a half years in prison and a 10,000-yuan fine on January 29, 2019 for posting information about Falun Gong on social media. His lawyer and family weren’t informed of the sentencing hearing. Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a […]
For the parents of Mr. Zhang Jinku, July 2, 2018 was a somber day. That was the day their son was to be released after serving five years for his faith in Falun Gong. But they were not allowed to pick him up at the prison about 300 miles away. Instead, they were told to […]
For many years, the Falun Dafa Information Center has noticed a disturbing trend in international media coverage of Falun Gong: the echoing of characterizations against Falun Gong formulated by the Chinese Communist Party like, “political,” “anti-china,” or “cult,” in an attempt to “balance” a story. The point of good journalism is to find the truth […]
In 2018, at least 69 practitioners died due to the persecution. They include peasants, workers, small business owners, professors, PhD degree holders, engineers, school principals, teachers, agriculture experts, military veterans, and others. Eight died while serving in prison. Four died in detention centers. Another 30 died shortly after being released, but all due to the […]
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