November 26, 2008: Falun Gong News Bulletin

Monitoring the Falun Gong Human Rights Crisis in China

News from Inside China:

News from outside China:

FDIC: Urgent Appeal: Widow of Olympic Torture Victim Faces Immediate Sentencing for Practicing Falun Gong
New York, November 24—The widow of a well-known musician and Falun Gong adherent who died from abuse in police custody is scheduled to be sentenced to a potentially long prison term in Beijing’s Chongwen District Court on Tuesday morning Beijing time (Monday evening EST).

Ms. Xu Na and her husband Yu Zhou, a popular folk band member, were arrested in Beijing on January 26 while returning home from a performance by Yu’s band. Eleven days later, Yu’s family was told to go to the Qinghe Emergency Center. When his family arrived, they found him dead. Xu has been represented by Mr. Cheng Hai of Yitong Law Firm, a well-known human rights lawyer, who has pleaded Xu’s innocence.

To read more: /article/832/?cid=84

AFP: China sentences Falungong follower to three years in jail
November 25 – The wife of a man who died in police custody in China ahead of the Beijing Olympics was sentenced to prison on Tuesday for supporting the outlawed Falungong spiritual group, her lawyer said. A Beijing court jailed Xu Na for three years for “using a heretical organisation to undermine the implementation of the law,” lawyer Cheng Hai told AFP, referring to Falungong, which was banned in 1999. “During her trial Xu plead not guilty and cited the freedom of religious belief guaranteed by (China’s) constitution,” Cheng said.

To read more: http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hVz9l5v3-NroyDGALZT2Nv6Paw2Q

United Nations Committee Against Torture: Concluding Observations Include Orders to Investigate Torture, Organ Harvesting from Falun Gong
(C) Allegations concerning Falun Gong Practitioners
While noting the State party’s information about the 2006 Temporary Regulation on Human Organ Transplants and the 2007 Human Organ Transplant Ordinance, the Committee takes cognizance of the allegations presented to the Special Rapporteur on Torture who has noted that an increase in organ transplant operations coincides with “the beginning of the persecution of [Falun Gong practitioners]” and who asked for “ a full explanation of the source of organ transplants” which could clarify the discrepancy and disprove the allegation of organ harvesting (A/HRC/7/3/Add.1). The Committee is further concerned with information received that Falun Gong practitioners have been extensively subjected to torture and ill-treatment in prisons and that some of them have been used for organ transplants (arts. 12 and 16).

The State party should immediately conduct or commission an independent investigation of the claims that some Falun Gong practitioners have been subjected to torture and used for organ transplants and take measures, as appropriate, to ensure that those responsible for such abuses are prosecuted and punished.”

To read more: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cat/docs/CAT.C.CHN.CO.4.pdf

FDIC: United Nations Torture Committee Statement Must Prompt More International Action to End Organ Harvesting from Falun Gong
November 25 – In a legally binding decision, the United Nations Committee on Torture called Friday for an investigation into illicit organ harvesting from Falun Gong practitioners, the latest in a long line of actions taken by writers, lawyers, doctors, and government representatives to research and condemn such abuses. The Falun Dafa Information Center urges the international community to take immediate action to further investigate, prevent, and end such crimes against humanity.

The FDIC urges the international community—particularly members states to the U.N. Convention against Torture—to establish an independent, international commission to investigate, monitor and recommend punishment for those involved in organ harvesting in China. Such a commission might also track the various measures that have already been put in place by some national governments to ensure their citizens are not complicit.

To read more: /article/834/?cid=84

Australia: Falun Gong Wins Best Cultural Award at Campbelltown City Festival Fisher’s Ghost Parade
November 8 – the city government of Campbelltown issued the Best Cultural Award to the Falun Gong Association entry in the Fisher’s Ghost Parade.

Over 100 groups and 2,500 people participated in the parade on November 1, and more than 20 thousand people watched it. The Falun Gong group included a band with dozens of members, as well as practitioners demonstrating the Falun Gong exercises on a decorated float while several female practitioners danced in colorful Tang Dynasty attire.

Photo of Falun Gong parade group’s ‘Divine Land Marching Band’: http://www.clearwisdom.net/emh/article_images/2008-11-1-au-tg-02.jpg

Photo of award certificate: http://www.clearwisdom.net/emh/article_images/2008-11-17-skds.jpg