Steven Wang, a principal dancer in New York, remembers when he received news of his father’s passing in 2009. His parents both practiced Falun Gong, a spiritual Buddhist faith that is now being persecuted by the Chinese Communist Party. In 2016, his widowed mother attempted to visit him in New York for his wedding but Chinese authorities blocked her from leaving due to her faith in Falun Gong.
The persecution of Falun Gong targeted 100 million people in China, and decimated countless families and communities across China. Below, we offer a glimpse into the human cost of this persecution with up-close and personal stories of those who were killed, those who survived, and those struggling to the freedom of others. These are their stories…
The persecution of Falun Gong targeted 100 million people in China, and decimated countless families and communities across China. These are their stories…
On Chinese New Year (three days before the Beijing Winter Olympics’ Opening Ceremony), police arrested and detained Ms. Yunzhi Ji. Authorities attempted to silence her because she was previously found with paper notes, stickers, and materials printed with Falun Gong information in her home. After two weeks in detention, she fell into a coma due to the abuse and passed away 49 days after her initial arrest.
Amy Yu, a fashion designer in London, has not seen her parents in 22 years. In 2016, Amy’s parents attempted to visit her in London but Chinese authorities blocked them. After rejecting their passport and visa applications, her parents were told they would never become passport holders because of their faith in Falun Gong.
Lucy’s mother, Liu Yan, was arrested by Chinese authorities on Sept. 30, 2021, in Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan Province in southwest China, and has been detained there ever since. Prior to this recent arrest, both of Lucy’s parents were sentenced to several years in prison where they were “tortured, brainwashed, and forced into slave labour,” according to Lucy.
In October of 2020, Grace Chen’s parents were studying the teachings of Falun Gong with other Falun Gong practitioners in Changsha city when police broke in and arrested them all. Subsequently, they have been detained and denied communication with family. 16-year-old Grace, who is studying in New York, calls upon all kindhearted people to help rescue her parents.
On May 27, 2020, Chunmei Wang was arrested by Kaiyuan City police for talking to people about Falun Gong and was indicted on June 10, 2020. On December 9, 2020, Ms. Wang was sentenced to 3.5 years in prison and was transferred to Second Women’s Prison of Yunnan Province around late February or early March in 2021. Ms. Wang’s son, Chen Ma currently lives in Herndon, Virginia.
On February 5, 2020, Mr. Xie and his wife, Zhao, were arrested by the police from Guilin Qixing police station in the name of “checking body temperature.” The officers confiscated Falun Gong books and other related paraphernalia. On February 8, 2020, the police admitted that they were arrested for handing out Falun Gong materials. Ms. Zhao’s older sister, Wendy Zhao, currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Dr. Sherry Zhang is an elite scientist, principal of a private school, and a veteran practitioner of Falun Dafa. Despite residing in the U.S. for more than 25 years, she continues to be a target of the CCP, who threaten and harass her elderly parents in attempts to control her.