Canadian Defense Minister Peter MacKay speaks during the plenary session at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) 11th Asia Security Summit in Singapore on June 3, 2012. The IISS is being attended by defence officials from around the world.     AFP PHOTO / ROSLAN RAHMAN        (Photo credit should read ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/GettyImages)Canadian Defense Minister Peter MacKay speaks during the plenary session at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) 11th Asia Security Summit in Singapore on June 3, 2012. The IISS is being attended by defence officials from around the world.     AFP PHOTO / ROSLAN RAHMAN        (Photo credit should read ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/GettyImages)

The Chinese ambassador’s recent remarks that Canada should keep human rights and national security concerns out of free trade negotiations don’t sit well with former cabinet minister Peter MacKay.

“It’s surprising that the Chinese envoy would even suggest such a thing,” said MacKay, a former minister of justice, defence, and foreign affairs in former prime minister Stephen Harper’s government, in a phone interview.

In the negotiations, we have to be cognizant of the fact that we are a democratic country, we place a high priority on human rights, we believe firmly in the rule of law.

— Peter MacKay, former cabinet minister

According to a March 24 Globe and Mail report, Lu Shaye, the Chinese ambassador to Canada, said China will regard as trade protectionism any attempt by Canada to block Chinese firms from taking over Canadian companies. Lu added that Beijing doesn’t want human rights to be used as a “bargaining chip” in the talks.

MacKay believes it is critically important for Canada to have human rights and national security issues on the table when discussing trade deals with China.

“I think that our trade pursuit and the protection of our national interests, our security interests, are inseparable,” he said.

“And I believe as well that in the negotiations, we have to be cognizant of the fact that we are a democratic country, we place a high priority on human rights, we believe firmly in the rule of law. … These are notable differences between Canada and China.”

MacKay noted that there is ample evidence of Chinese cyber attacks and intrusions against Canada, indicating that protection of our national interests needs to be foremost in the minds of anyone embarking on trade discussions with China.

In one well-publicized case in 2014, a Chinese state-sponsored cyberattack hacked into the computer systems of Canada’s National Research Council. According to a March 30 Globe report, federal documents show that the cyberattack cost Canada hundreds of millions of dollars.

The Liberal government sparked renewed concern last month when it approved a Chinese company’s takeover of Montreal high-tech firm ITF Technologies, a deal previously blocked by the Conservative government under Harper. The applications of the Canadian company’s laser technology products include making weapons.

“Without national security clearance, it opens up Canada and all of our interests—critical infrastructure, our national security, our banks, our institutions—it opens them up for certain risks, and it will also by the way cause serious concerns amongst our allies, the United States, Great Britain, Australia, and New Zealand,” MacKay said.  

History of Hostilities

Western intelligence agencies have often warned that China’s state-owned and private enterprises act in the interest of the Chinese Communist Party to the detriment of the West. Canada decided to block Chinese telecom giant Huawei from a government communications network project in 2012 due to security risks.

A U.S. congressional national security report released in 2012 concluded that risks associated with Huawei’s and Chinese telecom company ZTE’s “provision of equipment to U.S. critical infrastructure could undermine core U.S. national-security interests.”

In another case publicized in 2011, as previously reported by Epoch Times, Chinese hackers penetrated the computers of the finance, defence, and treasury departments in Canada.

Chinese officials have often taken a hostile stance against Canada’s allies. In a Chinese-language propaganda video released in 2015 to commemorate China’s World War II victory against Japan, Chinese military is shown destroying U.S. maritime forces and occupying the Japanese island of Okinawa.

A 2013 documentary film produced by two senior generals in the Chinese military labels the United States as China’s enemy.

‘Eyes Wide Open’ Beats Naiveté

Although an interview with a Global Affairs Canada spokesperson wasn’t possible, department spokesperson Natasha Nystrom said in an emailed statement that Canada is in the early stages of exploratory trade talks with China.

“We are also seeking Canadians’ views on whether and how to pursue a Canada-China FTA [free trade agreement]. The government’s approach is one that puts the interests of Canadians, including the opportunities that exist for the middle class and crucially, our values, front and centre,” Nystrom wrote.

John McCallum, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s former immigration minister and now Canada’s ambassador to China, said in an interview with the Toronto Star that he is eager to do “even more” than already suggested by Trudeau to improve relations with China. He insisted the Trudeau government will ensure that promoting and protecting human rights remains a priority, and any agreements with China will take these concerns into account.

I think they’re being really naive and really don’t necessarily understand who they’re dealing with.

— Randy Hoback, MP

Randy Hoback, a Conservative MP and vice-chair of the parliamentary committee on international trade, says Canadian administrators shouldn’t be naive when dealing with China.

“They were going to allow the approval of the telecom company out of Montreal, where our security people are saying ‘no way, you cannot let this happen.’ This should be a very dangerous precedent,” says Hoback.

“You have to go into this type of situation with your eyes wide open, and I think they’re being really naive and really don’t necessarily understand who they’re dealing with.”

With reporting by Matthew Little

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On November 21, hundreds of Australian Falun Gong practitioners rallied in front of Capital Hill in Canberra to raise awareness of the ongoing human rights abuses perpetrated against their fellow practitioners in China since 1999. The rally put focus on murder for organs in China, and called for Australian politicians to support bringing an end to forced live organ harvesting and the persecution of Falun Gong by Chinese Communist Regime.

Banners calling for support from the Australian public and displaying the principles of the practice, Truth, Compassion and Tolerance, lined both sides of Commonwealth Avenue through the city centre and around Capital Hill.

Speakers at the rally included Fan Huiqiang from Australian Falun Dafa Association, MP Craig Kelly, former Canadian cabinet minister David Kilgour and Winnipeg international human rights lawyer David Matas. The two co-authored a new report which documents the killing of Falun Gong practitioners to supply China’s lucrative organ trade.

The report concludes that as many as 60,000 to 100,000 transplants have been taking place in China from the year 2000 to the present with the source being non-consenting prisoners of conscience; primarily Falun Gong. This puts the likely death toll of Falun Gong practitioners from forced organ harvesting in the region of 1.5 million over the past 15 years.

The emcee of the rally, Mr John Deller said: “What Falun Gong practitioners are doing is not protesting; they are only trying to tell the truth.”

Forced organ harvesting goes against everything we in believe in.

— Craig Kelly, member of parliament.

MP Craig Kelly spoke at the rally, sharing about a business trip he took to China a decade ago. He explained how most of the tourist brochures in his hotel contained a leaflet inside defaming Falun Gong in poor English. It took him 10 years to work out why the Chinese communist Government did this. Once he understood the truth of Falun Gong, he said: “I’ve always stood with you since then. That’s why I have been proud to be co-chairmen of the Parliamentary group against forced organ harvesting … doing something to stop it.”

Mr Kelly told Epoch Times that David Kilgour had held a briefing inside parliament house, introducing new evidence and explaining some of the latest findings on this human rights abuse.   “We want people to donate their organs freely. But having a system where people are forced to have their organs harvested without consent … truthfully, this goes against everything we believe in. It is something we need to speak out against in our free and democratic parliament.”

Kelly said the introduction of a motion to the House of Representatives is underway. “We will make sure that it will go to parliament, and we will make sure it is bipartisan.”

Kelly said the motion condemning forced organ harvesting will be introduced early in the New Year.

David Kilgour also spoke at the rally outside parliament, “David and I have met with Falun Gong practitioners in over 50 countries; we have a great respect for you, what you believe, and what you do. There is never been an act of violence committed by any Falun Gong practitioner anywhere in China or anywhere else, you should be really, really proud of that. “

He also mentioned that he had a good hearing with parliamentarians that morning, but he said there are a lot of members of parliament who have yet to learn the truth of the matter before the Australian government will place a ban on Australians going to China for organs.

“What happened to the Jewish community is different from what’s happening to Falun Gong community. Not even Adolf Hitler would murder people and sell the organs to wealthy residents from Germany or China.” He said.

“A lot of people know what’s happening now, it’s better to stop it. Australia, Canada and all who believe in human dignity have to get this stopped. Please continue what you’re doing.”

Renowned international human rights lawyer David Matas also addressed the crowd, highlighting the total lack of transparency, accountability and traceability from China’s organ transplant industry.

“The Chinese communist regime cannot explain the organ source,” he said.

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Torsten Trey, the executive director of Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting, speaks at an event in Taipei on Feb. 27, 2013. (Chen Pochou/Epoch Times)Torsten Trey, the executive director of Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting, speaks at an event in Taipei on Feb. 27, 2013. (Chen Pochou/Epoch Times)

Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting, a nongovernmental coalition of medical professionals, has declared the date of Oct. 1 the “International Day Against Forced Organ Harvesting.”  This year is the inaugural occasion, and to mark it the group has called on the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to take action on the abuse.

The concerns of DAFOH, as the organization is often known, focus primarily on what they describe as the killing of prisoners of conscience in China for organs—the practice is believed by researchers to primarily target practitioners of Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline that has been marked for elimination since 1999, as well as other ethnic or religious communities, including Tibetans, Uyghurs, and possibly some “house church” Christians.

Those concerned with the issue are enjoined by DAFOH to download their petition and send it to both DAFOH and the email address of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. The petition expresses “alarm… [at] the mass of evidence of forced organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience in China.”

It calls on the High Commissioner, currently Prince Zeid bin Ra’ad of Jordan, to call upon China to cease forced organ harvesting, “initiate further objective investigations that lead to the prosecution of the perpetrators involved in this crime against humanity,” and also call upon the cessation of the persecution of Falun Gong.

 Falun Gong, a set of five slow-motion exercises and moral teachings centered on the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance, gained significant popularity in China during the 1990s, before it befell the wrath of the leader at the time, Jiang Zemin.

According to the most recent research by the investigators David Kilgour, David Matas, and Ethan Gutmann, between 60,000 and 100,000 organ transplants have been conducted per year in China since around the year 2000 — just six months after the persecution of Falun Gong started. During this period, China claimed that almost the sole source of its organs were death row prisoners — even as the number of death row executees fell, year by year.

Given the enormous gap between the number of transplants and judicial executions, however, (researchers say the latter number is only in the thousands per year), researchers have explored alternate organ sources, and concluded that practitioners of Falun Gong are targeted. The evidence supporting this includes surreptitiously recorded telephone calls with doctors who say they have healthy organs from Falun Gong, multiple independent reports of blood-testing in custody, overlap between personnel engaged in the anti-Falun Gong campaign and organ transplantation, and a range of other indicators.

DAFOH highlights on its website a number of statements of international support, including from Japan and the United States.

Hiroshi Yamada, Member of the House of Councillors in the Japanese Diet, is quoted saying: “I sincerely express my condolence to those who were victims of the forced organ harvesting.  We will take an action from Japan so that this Holocaust, which challenges the sublime spirit of medicine, will be eliminated as soon as possible through strong solidarity of people with conscience in the whole world.”

A number of U.S. federal and state elected representatives also provided comments on the occasion. “Dear Members of the United Nations Human Rights Commission,” writes State Rep. Michael F. Curtin of Ohio. “For many years, I have been deeply troubled by the mounting evidence of forced organ harvesting in China and elsewhere in the world.

The U.N. Human Rights Commission has a moral duty to do everything in its power to bring an end to this outrageous scourge, an affront to civilization and an affront to humanity itself.”

Congressman Michael G. Fitzpatrick, a Republican from Pennsylvania, entered the commemoration into the House of Representatives record with a statement on Sept. 30. “This practice is another form of evil in our time and the United Nations will be further alerted to this crime against humanity, as are we,” he said.

Incidentally, or not, the date of Oct. 1 contains additional significance: It is on this date in 1949 that Mao Zedong proclaimed the People’s Republic of China.

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People leave home in the damaged village at Bandong Town on July 12, 2016 in Fuijan, China. (Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images)People leave home in the damaged village at Bandong Town on July 12, 2016 in Fuijan, China. (Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images)

When Typhoon Nepartak tore through He Zhangze’s coastal hometown of Xiamen, the 18-year-old college student decided to have a closer look at the disaster-affected regions.

Neither the police nor the Chinese state-controlled media took kindly to his investigative adventure, though. He posted his findings, which included reports of dead bodies littering the streets, to social media on July 18; three days later, the state news mouthpiece Xinhua reported that he had been detained by the local police in Fujian Province.

He’s report, posted to popular social media and new sites Weibo and Sina, was removed by censors before long, but local eyewitness accounts and reporting by a human rights NGO confirms that the havoc wreaked by Nepartak—and hushed up by Xinhua—is real.

Initially, He had wanted to travel upstream to the reservoirs to investigate but had to abandon his plan because of tight security, according to a report by the NGO Human Rights in China. The report said that He had discovered that many people drowned when reservoirs in Mingqing County were filled to capacity and flooded.

Xinhua, meanwhile, maintains that He’s findings are merely based on rumors spread by locals with ulterior motives, and that in particular the supposed deaths were “nothing but fake.”

The Chinese regime imposes draconian censorship on online discussion; in the media, there is talk of a “maximum quota” for the number of reported deaths in accidents and natural disasters. In 2013, a woman surnamed Zhao was detained for posting questions online about details in a murder case.  

Residents clean furniture by a river in Bandong Town after Typhoon Nepartak on July 10, 2016 in Minqing County, Fujian Province. (VCG/VCG via Getty Images)

Earlier during the typhoon, New York-based New Tang Dynasty Television, made phone calls to villagers in Bandong, a township in Minqqing County, enquiring about the result of reservoir discharge.

“There are two or three reservoirs here,” said Mr. Liu, a store owner. “There wasn’t any prior announcement about the discharge before it happened.”

“I know that there are are at least 200 deaths in Bandong alone,” said Ms. Xu, another resident.  

 But as of July 17, Chinese state media reported that the death toll in Mingqing stood at 73.

It was not the first time that He Zhangze had a run-in with the authorities. According to the report by Human Rights in China, He had refused to write “50-cent party” posts to spin public opinion in favor of the communist regime, and on another occasion organized a group of 300 students to quit the Communist Youth League, a youth organization boasting tens of millions of members that acts as an arm of the Communist Party.

According to Human Rights in China, local police had wanted to give He a lighter punishment and let him off with a warning on account of his age, but this was vetoed by officers from the provincial-level Public Security Bureau.

The report says that staff at the school He attends revoked his secretarial position and has given up on “grooming” him to be a “patriotic Party member.”

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Epoch Times: Can you introduce me to this new report that is coming out?

Ethan Gutmann: Well, it doesn’t have a flashy title. It’s simply “Bloody Harvest/The Slaughter: An Update.” It’s very minimal. We are not trying to reproduce our earlier work. David Kilgour and David Matas wrote “Bloody Harvest” and they put a lot of work into it over the years. I wrote “The Slaughter“. It took seven years. The idea of the new report is to update our findings.

There is an indisputable mound of information at this point showing that Chinese transplant volumes are significantly higher than anything that Beijing has claimed. The usual claim is that China does around 10,000 transplants a year. But when you look at the hospitals and transplant centres – the military hospitals and civilian hospitals, secondary transplant centres, small, medium and large transplant centres – and you count them up and see what their actual volume is? Well, the lowest number we arrive at is approximately 60,000 per year, not 10,000. The number that seems more likely to us is about 100,000 per year. Now this is in a country that claims that it is no longer sourcing organs from death row prisoners. This is in a country that didn’t have a system until quite recently to accept voluntary transplants. The voluntary transplants that occur are usually within a family, where one family member might give a kidney to another family member.

We are looking at not 10,000 transplants per year in China, but something more like 60,000 to 100,000 transplants a year in China.

— Ethan Gutmann

One of the things we’ve noticed about these hospitals is the incredible amount of construction—huge transplant wings have been added; cities and provinces that did not have a transplant industry have, seemingly by central planning, been given transplant industries. This is one of the most striking features of the research. Yet as much as people might want to see this as simply for-profit, it is not. There is an element of central planning throughout. Transplantation, although never publicly declared to be a “pillar industry” in China, is clearly being thought of in that way at the highest levels of the Communist Party.

These numbers are absolutely extraordinary, staggering.

ET: What is the research based on? What evidence have you used?

EG: Well, the sources are obscure. This is a country that does not want to openly speak about organ harvesting. This is a country where discussion is blacked out because this is one of the most dangerous issues to the Chinese Communist Party. So it turns out that Nurses Weekly is one of the most important sources out there: an internal publication, obviously something only a specialist in China would read. Yet it actually has clues to harvesting and transplant numbers in some cases. This is information that would never be put on a website that could reveal something to the West but it’s out there. And it’s out there in dissertations, even dissertation proposals, hospital internal newsletters and even on some very obscure websites.

Author Ethan Gutmann and his new book “The Slaughter” to be released Aug. 12. San Francisco, Calif., July 29, 2014 (Steve Ispas/Epoch Times)

We had to bring this information out. What we essentially had was a mountain of material from these hospitals. And you come out with larger numbers from these individual hospitals by counting them up. It’s like building blocks. You stack them up and you keep adding until you’ve built a mountain.

That’s actually very powerful because, continuing the analogy, it means that once you’ve built the mountain, well, even if you lose a ledge or have a landslide it doesn’t change the fact that you have a mountain. The mountain is still very high. Some of these hospitals have authorization, some of them don’t. But we do have evidence that they’re performing these transplants. And that information is extremely damaging to the Chinese medical establishment because the numbers are extraordinary.

Some of the most reliable witnesses I interviewed knew the open secret: Falun Gong were being harvested.

— Ethan Gutmann

ET: How do you go from showing that large numbers of transplants have taken place from an unknown source, to concluding that the organs must have come from a particular source – i.e. practitioners of Falun Gong, and others?

EG: We don’t conclude that in the sense that it’s an open question: what possible sources could they be using? We don’t preclude the idea that more death row prisoners are being executed for their organs than previously understood. We’re looking at a 600 percent increase in the amount of transplants that are commonly understood per year. We’re going from 10,000 a year to 60,000 a year at a minimum – that is the smallest we can plausibly come up with. The largest is 100,000 or more. And even if you’re just following China’s medical rules, you basically come up with a number that’s close to 90,000. We can’t rule out that there are more death row executions than previously understood. But even then, you can’t get to these spectacular numbers. The other source has to be prisoners of conscience. How that breaks down, whether and how many are Falun Gong – well, we assume the majority, or even the vast majority, are Falun Gong. There may be some House Christians, Uyghurs, Tibetans, or another group we haven’t yet identified. The update opens up a lot of questions.

This is a country where discussion is blacked out because this is one of the most dangerous issues to the Chinese Communist Party.

— Ethan Gutmann

We are building on previous research—both Bloody Harvest and The Slaughter—which convincingly made the case that prisoners of conscience were and are being harvested for their organs in China. So we’re not trying to fight old battles here. We’re not trying to prove something that we feel is already proven, something it’s just taken the world a little time to catch up with.

ET: What is the key evidence you rely on to contend that prisoners of conscience, primarily practitioners of Falun Gong, are in fact killed for their organs?

EG: For me, it’s based on interviews with refugees who’ve come out of the labor camp system and have reported exams targeted at their retail organs. These exams were generally not given to any other prisoners, although in some cases Uyghurs report them, and in some cases House Christians do also. I was also able to show that Tibetans have received almost exact the same exams, and again, other prisoners were ignored. That tells us that they are targets for organ harvesting.

What we’re looking at is one of the greatest cover-ups in human history. 

— Ethan Gutmann

But it’s even more explicit than that: Some of the most reliable witnesses I interviewed knew the open secret: Falun Gong were being harvested. They would select them and take them away in buses from labor camps each year. A witness showed me where the buses parked, near his cell block. We’ve understood that for some time. It’s taking place. Most of the argument has been about the numbers.

We don’t know how many Falun Gong are being harvested because we don’t know how many organs are taken from each individual. Very likely it’s only one—one liver, one kidney, one heart from each individual, and it gets tissue matched with an organ tourist or other recipient. But we do know that it is possible to take three, maybe four, organs from a single individual, and if you have four recipients who are lined up right there, and have had their blood matched with this particular individual, well, it’s theoretically possible to do that too. So we cannot give the numbers of deaths, a murder number so to speak. We can say that our previous estimates are underestimates. That we can say.

It’s possible to generate a crude range, but I think we should be chastened by this new information.

As much as I was hoping that I had finished my book and could move on to other subjects and other topics, I can’t do that with a clear conscience. Not with these findings.

— Ethan Gutmann

ET: In my discussions with transplant surgeons about this issue, I have heard prominent individuals in the international transplant establishment say things like: “Well, it may not be Falun Gong. It’s probably organ trafficking—’your kidney for an iPad’ type of thing.” What do you say to that?

EG: Only someone who is very ignorant about China would make such statements. Only someone who has never bothered to look at my accounts of refugee interviews would make such statements. Anyone who has lived in China understands that there is a fair amount of control over profitable enterprises. China hasn’t been taken over by triads. That’s an excuse that the Chinese medical establishment has tried to dance out, several times, almost cyclically: “Oh, it’s some kind of triad activity.” Since 2012 we’ve known that powerful official figures, like Wang Lijun, the protege of Bo Xilai, a prominent figure in Chinese politics at the time, was running a very productive organ harvesting center.

A person who would say that about trafficking is simply naive. That’s a problem with Western surgeons going into China. It’s not that they’re pernicious or have an evil motive. But they have really never taken the time to understand anything about China, and how it may be different from other areas of the world where they’ve done great work. China’s an extremely large country that is centrally run. This isn’t a Third World basket case where the government doesn’t run much of anything.

ET: For people who are already somewhat familiar with your (collective) research into the topic, what is new and important about the new report?

EG: What the report shows quite conclusively is that we are looking at not 10,000 transplants per year in China, but something more like 60,000 to 100,000 transplants a year in China.

This is a new form of genocide. It’s using the most respected members of society to implement it: the medical profession.

— Ethan Gutmann

Now, this number is extremely upsetting when you think about the sources. Clearly death row prisoners cannot fill the void. Clearly, even if voluntary organ donations in China have gone up, they can’t reach this level. And when looking at the warm ischemia time in some of the transplants—the time from when the heart stops to when the organ is removed—it’s way too low. It’s almost instantaneous. This is live organ harvesting. And what that probably means is that we are looking at Falun Gong in the main, but also Uyghurs, Tibetans and House Christians. These are the groups that have been targeted from the beginning and they continue to be targeted.

We see no sign of any hospitals closing or transplant centers struggling. In fact we see the opposite: we see construction programs. That’s the picture: Hundreds and hundreds of hospitals. And it has become their bread and butter. The economic mainstay of their profession is to keep this thing going. But that is a death sentence for the groups we’re talking about.

One final thing that we mention in our report is a striking piece of information: Falun Gong practitioners in six provinces have been given blood tests in their homes. Police come, knock on their door, and then administer a blood test – one that is clearly intended for tissue matching. This is taking place in their homes, not in the prison cells, not in the labor camps, not in the black jails. When I first heard about this I said: this is a scare tactic, they’re telling them to behave and not get into trouble again. And that still might be true, but the fact is—and I really hate to use Holocaust references here—but what happens when you start registering people? What does that mean? If you go back and look at when they started registering Jews in Holland, what did that lead to? Maybe it started out as a way of some sort of social control. Maybe it started out as a scare tactic. But it lead to something else. And in fact, looking at these reports from the hospitals and the hospitals bragging about the extraordinary volume they’re producing—you feel that you’re looking at history repeating itself.

ET: Have you come up with a death toll?

EG: We’re putting this report out without coming up with a casualty number, for Falun Gong practitioners for example. We can’t. Because we don’t know if they’re getting two organs out of a Falun Gong practitioner, or one organ, or even three organs. It is very hard to get three organs tissue matched into new donors. It’s very hard to do that all simultaneously but it is possible. So for that reason, we cannot come up with a clear number.

But what I can say is that the numbers we estimated previously for Kilgour and Matas—which was 41,500 organs between 2001 and 2005, for me, I made an estimate from 2005 to 2008 that said that 65,000 Falun Gong practitioners have been harvested for their organs—at this point, those numbers look very low. Very low.

(L–R) David Kilgour (L) with David Matas (C) and Ethan Gutmann (R), author of 'The Slaughter: Mass Killings, Organ Harvesting, and China's Secret Solution to Its Dissident Problem.' (Simon Gross/Epoch Times)

(L–R) David Kilgour (L) with David Matas (C) and Ethan Gutmann (R), author of ‘The Slaughter: Mass Killings, Organ Harvesting, and China’s Secret Solution to Its Dissident Problem.’ (Simon Gross/Epoch Times)

I am not saying this is the end of the investigation in any way. This is a horseback judgement. It’s an interim report. But the world really does need to wake up to what is going on. This problem has not been solved. It’s worse.

I want to say something personal about this. When I was writing my book I believed I was writing about history, that I was not writing about something that was current. But I look at this and say it wasn’t history, it never was. This is a current event. And it is a terrible event. As much as I was hoping that I had finished my book and could move on to other subjects and other topics, I can’t do that with a clear conscience. Not with these findings.

ET: What do you expect or home to be the outcome of the release of the report, and the fallout?

EG: We hope that it will lead to some policy changes in the West. We’re not expecting them to bomb China’s railways, we’re not expecting them to declare war, we’re not expecting the Western nations to cut off economic relations with China. But perhaps we will try to keep our own hands clean. This is the minimum requirement of a Western society now: If we have people going to China for organs, that needs to be recorded. We should never be asked a question in the United States congress or in the European Parliament about how many of our people are going to China to get organs. That is a question that it is up to the Western societies to answer. There is no reason for medical confidentiality. If you walk into a hospital with a gunshot wound in America in most states, it is considered a police matter not just a medical matter. It doesn’t matter if you say, “I was cleaning my gun and it went off. It was an accident.” It is a police matter.

If we have people going to China for organs, that needs to be recorded.

— Ethan Gutmann

ET: Where does the issue go from here?

EG: Ultimately to get the kind of really reliable answers that we need? It’s the responsibility of China to provide those answers. And that’s not going to happen because of some video on the web or some social media movement. It’s going to happen because the governments of the West and the United Nations demand these answers. And even then it’s going to be very hard to get these answers and very hard to find justice. But this is one of the central tests of our time. I believe that, if we can get anything out of a tragedy like this, it is that the human species has no choice but to look as closely as it can at this form of genocide. This is a new form of genocide. It’s using the most respected members of society to implement it: the medical profession. And for these reasons we can’t avoid this any longer.

So this is no longer history, this is something quite current. What we’re looking at is one of the greatest cover-ups in human history. The Chinese state has determined that the best thing to do is simply wipe out anyone in Falun Gong, anyone in the Uyghur community and anyone in the Tibetan community who has been exposed to this—wipe them out and get rid of the evidence.

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Shortly before this year’s 17th anniversary of over 10,000 Falun Gong practitioners’ peaceful appeal at Zhongnanhai, Chinese leader Xi Jinping gave unusual speeches on petitions, religion, and political and legal issues.
This was interpreted as Xi giving hints to indicate his attitude. He also tackled issues that former Chinese leaders Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao had no courage to touch on.
On April 25, 1999, over 10,000 practitioners of the Falun Gong spiritual discipline went to the State Council Appeals Office near Zhongnanhai in Beijing to ask authorities to release 45 Falun Gong practitioners who were unreasonably detained by authorities in the city of Tianjin.
The incident is considered the largest and the most peaceful and rational petition in China’s history.
Zhu Rongji, who was the Premier Minister at the time, personally met with representatives of the spiritual practitioners and promised to release the detained practitioners and to give them the legitimate right to practise. The issue was resolved at that point.
However, Jiang Zemin, the Communist leader at the time, labelled the incident “besieging Zhongnanhai.” He initiated a massive and cruel suppression against Falun Gong practitioners starting on July 20, the same year without the consent of the remaining six members of the Politburo Standing Committee.
The harsh suppression has lasted 17 years. Each year, April 25 is considered a sensitive date. However, right before this year’s anniversary, Xi undertook a series of unusual and high-profile movements.
The important message he released has triggered wide attention from the outside world.
Petition issue
On April 21, state-run media published Xi and Premier Li Keqiang’s assertiveness on the issue of petitioning. Xi spoke of “devoting great efforts to deal with the outstanding petition problems, and properly resolving the issues of people’s legitimate and lawful demands.”
Li called for “striving to resolve the conflicts and protect people’s legitimate rights and interests.”
The timing of the above remarks drew wide attention.
For the past 17 years, Falun Gong practitioners have been subject to defamation, illegal sentencing, torture, and other ways of persecution. These torture tactics have gradually begun to be applied to many common Chinese people.
Now, as China’s civil rights movement continues to rise, more and more people are beginning to fight for their rights through petitioning.
Shi Cangshan, a Washington-based expert on China issues, believes that Xi chose to endorse people’s petitioning rights and gave the instruction to handle the petition issue properly right before April 25.
“Xi Jinping used a “you-should-know” style to show his stance on the Falun Gong issue, expressing his dissatisfaction with Jiang Zemin’s persecution,” Shi said.
Meeting on religion
From April 22–23, Xi presided over a top-level meeting about religious issues. Five Politburo members—Li Keqiang, Wang Qishan, Zhang Dejiang, Liu Yunshan, and Yu Zhengsheng—attended the meeting.
This was the first time the highest leader had presided over the religious meeting in 15 years. Previously it was chaired by the Secretary for Religious Affairs.
Xi made a high-profile speech on religious matters at the meeting. “Organize and unite the majority of religious followers,” he said.
State-run media made a quick high-profile coverage of the news, which is significantly different from when Jiang presided over the meeting.
In 2001, Jiang staged the Tiananmen self-immolation hoax, in which TV footage showed several individuals who apparently set themselves on fire. State-run media widely broadcast the footage, claiming that the self-immolators were Falun Gong practitioners.
This was part of Jiang’s full-scale defamation campaign against Falun Gong through the Communist regime’s propaganda system. At the end of the same year, Jiang presided over the national religion meeting, but he increased the strength of the suppression against Falun Gong.
The details of the meeting were reported a few years later.
Officials arrested
At the same time, several officials from the Political and Legal Affairs system were punished by Xi’s authorities before the April 25 anniversary.
On April 24, authorities announced the news that four officials from the Political and Legal Affairs system had been disciplined. The Political and Legal Affairs system has been the most vicious party during Jiang’s persecution of Falun Gong.
Since Xi took power, there has been some major clean-up in the Political and Legal Affairs system. Several key officials have been sacked, including the former secretary of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission, Zhou Yongkang.
On April 16, Zhang Yue, secretary of the Political and Legal Affairs Commission of Hebei Province, was dismissed from the position for further investigation. Zhang is one of Zhou’s trusted followers.
Zhou took the role of Minister of Public Security and Deputy Director of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission in 2002. Zhang was appointed as the head the Ministry of Public Security’s “26th Bureau” in 2003. This is the notorious “610 Office,” an illegal organization established by Jiang and his supporters for the sole purpose of suppressing Falun Gong.
Zhang became the direct accomplice of the Jiang faction in the public security system. After being moved to the Hebei Political and Legal Committee in 2007, Zhang became the person directly accountable for the brutal persecution of Falun Gong in Hebei Province.
He was on the investigation list of the World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong (WOIPFG).
On April 25, state-run media reported on Xi’s five must-follow requirements for the Political and Legal Affairs system.
The Falun Gong issue
Before the 17th anniversary of April 25, more than 200,000 people have lodged complaints against Jiang for his persecution of Falun Gong. Some analysts believe that as the international community becomes increasingly concerned about the illegal persecution of Falun Gong, Xi has to face the Falun Gong issue.
Xi, Hu, and Wen all do not want to be the scapegoats of the persecution, but Xi is handling the issue differently.
The book “The True Jiang Zemin” revealed that when Jiang initiated the persecution on July 20, 1999, the other six members of the Politburo Standing Committee did not support him. They were Li Peng, Zhu Rongji, Li Ruihuan, Hu Jintao, Wei Jianxing, and Li Lanqing.
On April 26, 1999, the day after the appeal, the Politburo Standing Committee had a meeting to discuss the Falun Gong issue.
Zhu Rongji said, “Let them do the exercises.” Jiang stood

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The Chinese regime is trying to accelerate the capabilities of its defense industry, and this is bad news for democracy and human rights.
China is the world’s third largest arms exporter (with the United States in first and Russia in second). The problem with Chinese arms sellers is that they’ve had to find a niche in the global market—and that often means selling to countries that aren’t on good terms with the West.
Over the years, Chinese defense firms have been accused of breaking UN embargoes by selling weaponry to countries including North Korea, Iran, and Qaddafi-era Libya.
Human Rights Watch called on China in August 2014 to cease its supply of weapons including missiles, grenade launchers, and machine guns to South Sudan. It noted that while China was calling for peace talks, it was assisting the “extraordinary acts of cruelty against civilians, war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity.”
A Feb. 23 story from China’s state-run People’s Daily Online explains the target market of Chinese weapons. It says with China’s new FC-20 fighter jet, in particular, “Developing countries that do not have close military attachments with Western countries will be potential buyers” and they’re targeting countries that fit this description in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and South America (but don’t specify which).
China’s export of weaponry will not be hampered at all by political pretexts.”— People’s Daily, official mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party

While People’s Daily notes the United States views who it sells weapons to as “important diplomatic indicators for friends and enemies,” it states “China’s export of weaponry will not be hampered at all by political pretexts.”
Chinese weapons are often marketed for their low costs, and alleged close capabilities to Western technology. Both of these factors pull from the fact that a large number of Chinese weapons are counterfeits.
The U.S. Naval Institute gave a brief overview of China’s cloned weapons last year, noting that China’s J-15 Flying Shark is based on Russia’s Sukhoi Su-33, its J-31 jet pulls from the U.S. F-35B, and the list goes on for everything from unmanned vehicles to tanks, artillery, Humvees, infantry weapons, and other systems.
The Chinese regime also isn’t content with staying where they are in the market. Just this month, they’ve announced two major initiatives that will likely accelerate Chinese theft of foreign arms technology, and also get more advanced weapons into countries that aren’t on the best terms with the United States.
First, the defense industry in China has been moving to the private sphere—or at least as “private” as they can get in a country with strict arms controls, and where businesses with more than 50 employees are required to have a liaison from the Chinese Communist Party.
Second, according to Popular Science, China is starting its own version of the U.S. military’s research and development department, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)—although the analogy isn’t completely accurate.
More than 1,000 private defense companies are now operating in China, which is an increase of 127 percent since 2010.

The Chinese “DARPA” will be a committee that seems to be aimed more at oversight than the hands-on work. It will manage defense research and development, promote indigenous innovation, and coordinate how new developments are integrated into the Chinese military.
As Popular Science notes, “it’s hard to imagine China’s government authorizing even part” of what DARPA does. “Instead, the efforts of China’s advanced research might look a lot like those of other governments, since China’s already stolen plans for advanced military jets, ships, and lasers.”
It’s likely that the main focus for developments will still take place in the state-run Chinese arms companies, and through the Chinese regime’s new push for private defense firms.
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The state-run China Military Online reported on March 15 that “China has introduced specific measures to accelerate the opening of military industry to deeply push forward the development strategy of military-civilian integration.”
It states that more than 1,000 private defense companies are now operating in China, which is an increase of 127 percent since 2010. The movement is being spearheaded by the State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND).
This year, it adds, SASTIND will “accelerate” its operations to advance China’s weapons developments and promote the “export-oriented” defense industry.

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BEIJING—Twenty prominent lawyers and jurists from Europe, North America, Australia and Pakistan on Monday urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to release a dozen Chinese lawyers and legal assistants held in detention in an open letter published in the British newspaper The Guardian.

In the letter, the legal professionals, predominantly from Western countries, expressed worries that the Chinese lawyers have been denied legal counsel since their July detention.
They also said they feared that without legal representation the Chinese lawyers and legal assistants could be “at high risk of torture or other cruel and inhumane treatments.”
China has arrested six rights lawyers and legal assistants on suspicion of state subversion, and three more on suspicion of inciting state subversion. One legal assistant was arrested on suspicion of helping destroy evidence. Hong Kong-based China Human Rights Lawyers Concern Group said several more lawyers remain missing.
The lawyers have sought to use China’s own laws to hold officials accountable or to protect citizens’ rights, but Beijing says they are trying to sabotage the judicial system with improper activism.
Since July, more than 300 lawyers, legal assistants, staff members of law firms, and social activists have been detained and interrogated.
Chinese human rights lawyer Wang Yu in Beijing on April 18, 2015. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)
Most have been released, but some of the most prominent rights lawyers have been arrested, including Wang Yu, who defended one of the five women who became known as the “Feminist Five.” They were detained last March after they planned to hand out flyers against sexual harassment in several Chinese cities in a case that drew international scrutiny.
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The lawyers are known to have taken up some of the most contentious cases in China, often involving petitioners who have grievances with local governments, practitioners of the banned spiritual group Falun Gong, or political dissidents.
State media say the lawyers have colluded with social activists and used social media to put undue pressures on local courts. The Ministry of Public Security called them a “major criminal gang.”
Their arrests have drawn international attention, as shown by the latest open letter signed by heads of bar associations, legal scholars, and lawyers.

 

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HONG KONG—Falun Gong practitioners held a rally in Hong Kong to support a campaign of lawsuits against former Chinese dictator Jiang Zemin, who started the persecution against Falun Gong in 1999.The rally took place on Dec. 10, International Human Rights Day, which commemorates the proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on Dec. 10, 1948.
On July 1 this year, civil groups in Taiwan and Hong Kong co-sponsored the activity of collecting signatures to support suing Jiang. Jiang, the former leader of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), is being sued for launching and sustaining the now 16-year campaign of violence against the Falun Gong spiritual discipline.
Hong Kong Falun Gong practitioners rally to support the campaign of lawsuits against former Chinese dictator Jiang Zemin, on Dec. 10. (Epoch Times)
By Dec. 10, a total of 1,009,784 signatures were collected from Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and Macao, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and other Asian countries and regions. The largest numbers came from Taiwan (466,775), South Korea (381,561), and Japan (63,682).
All seven countries and regions have received acknowledgements of reception from mainland China’s Supreme People’s Procuratorate and Supreme Court. Statistics show that the Supreme Procuratorate received at least 388,148 reports against Jiang, and the Supreme Court received at least 322,741 reports.
The Asia coordinator of the activity, lawyer Theresa Chu, spoke at the rally through the internet. She said that since Jiang initiated the genocide persecution against Falun Gong practitioners in 1999, Falun Gong practitioners have gone through 16 International Human Rights Days.
Chu said the international community and the Chinese people have gradually come to understand the atrocities Jiang Zemin has committed against humanity.
She indicated that the joint report of more than one million people was exceptional in the history of human rights, both internationally and in China.
“For the first time there are one million people of different nationalities, races, and cultures expressing their appeals to the highest judicial institutes of China in the form of criminal reports against Jiang, asking to bring him to justice. This can be called the greatest accomplishment of the international community in defending universal values since the beginning of this century, which indicates that human rights have no borders.”
Hong Kong Signatures
Hong Kong Falun Dafa Association spokesman Kan Hung-cheung speaks at the rally on Dec. 10, 2015. (Epoch Times)
Since July, 50,128 signatures have been collected in Hong Kong to support the campaign to sue Jiang.Chow Wai-tung, the coordinator of suing Jiang in Hong Kong, said that more than 50,000 upright Hong Kong people have expressed their demands to bring Jiang to justice as soon as possible.
“Among the 50,000-plus signatures, 38,514 have been sent to the Supreme People’s Procuratorate in different batches. Of these, more than 20,002 have received acknowledgement of receipt,” Chow said.Hong Kong Falun Dafa Association spokesperson Kan Hung-cheung said the wave of suing Jiang has been showing a magnificent trend, and that it “continues to have global participation and support, asking to stop the persecution and to bring Jiang to justice.”
He said that bringing the persecutors to justice would not only stop the CCP’s persecution of good people, but also uphold social righteousness and revive the moral conscience of the country.Several Falun Gong practitioners at the rally shared their experiences of filing complaints against Jiang. Some shared the touching stories of Hong Kong people who enthusiastically signed to support the campaign to sue Jiang.
LegCo Members
LegCo member Leung Kwok-hung speaks at the rally on Dec. 10, 2015. (Epoch Times)
Several members of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong (LegCo) attended the rally and showed their support for the lawsuits.
LegCo member Leung Kwok-hung spoke at the rally. He said that Falun Gong practitioners’ efforts to stop the persecution have lasted a decade, and the CCP’s lies—including the Tiananmen Square self-immolation hoax, a propaganda video intended to defame Falun Gong practitioners—are doomed to fail.
He criticized the CCP’s inhuman suppression of Falun Gong. “Live organ harvesting is one of the crimes against humanity that absolutely cannot be accepted at all,” he said.
LegCo member Wu Chi-wai said, “The fact that so many mainland people have participated in the reports against Jiang reflects the seriousness of the crime committed by Jiang. It also indicates the commendable courage of the public in the course of pursuit of justice.”
“No matter what type of autocracy, you cannot stop people’s efforts to pursue righteousness and justice. This will encourage more mainland people to step forward,” Wu said.
LegCo member Leung Yiu-chung said one million signatures is a very large number, and it takes courage to bring accusations against the CCP’s former leader. Leung said the CCP has been using high-pressure methods on people, especially religious suppression.
Leung said that so many mainland Chinese people have come forward to sue with a spirit of sacrifice; it is a good inspiration to others.
Translated by Susan Wang. Written in English by Sally Appert.

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BEIJING—Police scuffled with protesters and journalists at a Beijing courthouse Monday as a prominent rights lawyer stood trial on charges of provoking trouble and stirring ethnic hatred with online commentary critical of the ruling Communist Party.

Chinese protesters and foreign rights groups said Pu Zhiqiang’s trial at the No. 2 Beijing Intermediate Court amounted to political persecution, and foreign governments including the U.S. called for his release. Pu denied the charges and the trial concluded about midday, with Pu’s lawyer Shang Baojun saying a verdict and sentence would be delivered at a later date.
“Pu Zhiqiang is a lawyer with a conscience,” activist Yang Qiuyu said in a brief interview outside the courthouse while a policeman tried to grab him. “This is why he is now under arrest. We support him, and that means that we are also defending our own rights.”
Pu was active in defending free speech and represented dissident artist Ai Weiwei in a tax evasion case that Ai’s supporters said was politically motivated. He also was instrumental in pushing for the eventual abolishment of the labor camp system, which allowed police to lock up people for up to four years without a trial.
About 50 protesters had gathered at the courthouse along with two dozen journalists and about a dozen Western diplomats, but all of them were denied entrance. In noisy scuffles, police and plainclothes security officers wearing yellow smiley-face stickers pushed journalists and protesters away from the court entrance area. They threw one of the protesters to the ground and took away several others.
At least one foreign journalist also was slammed to the ground, the Foreign Correspondents Club of China said in an open letter of complaint about the rough treatment.
The charges against Pu relate to a number of posts on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo that questioned the party’s policies toward the Tibetan and Uighur (pronounced WEE-gur) ethnic minorities in the Tibet and Xinjiang regions, and mocked political figures.
Mo Shaoping, another defense lawyer, said that Pu pleaded not guilty, and that prosecutors had not demonstrated that any of Pu’s postings had provoked troubles or incited ethnic tensions.
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“This is really a case of freedom of expression, in which no harm to anyone has been proven,” Mo said in an interview after the trial.
Pu’s lawyers asked for bail, arguing that he was no danger to the public and had medical ailments that needed attention.
The court did not answer phone calls, and prosecutors could not immediately be reached for comment.
Pu was detained shortly after attending a May 2014 meeting to discuss commemorating 25 years since the Tiananmen Square massacre, at a time when authorities were keeping a lid on any public commemorations of the event. Hundreds, possibly thousands, of protesters were killed in the crackdown, and the topic remains taboo in China.
Rights groups have said Pu faces up to eight years in prison.
Dan Biers, a diplomat with the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, told reporters outside the courthouse that the U.S. urges Chinese authorities to release Pu and uphold China’s constitution.
“Lawyers and civil society leaders such as Mr. Pu should not be subject to continued repression but should be allowed to contribute to the building of a prosperous and stable society,” Biers said, reading from a statement.
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Patrick Poon, China researcher at Amnesty International, called Pu’s trial an act of political persecution. “He is being punished solely for standing up to the Chinese government in his courageous defense of human rights,” he said.
Amnesty International says there have been “repeated procedural irregularities” in his prosecution, including a prolonged pre-trial detention, denial of adequate medical care and prosecutors refusing to disclose evidence against him to his defense lawyers.

 

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On Nov. 18, the United Nations Committee Against Torture had a hearing on China that revealed more than the Chinese delegation may have intended about the regime’s attitude toward torture.
Wu Hailong, the head of Chinese delegation, had submitted a report. The committee’s experts responded with questions, and the Chinese delegation replied. Even though Wu’s report claimed that China had achieved important progress in promoting human rights, the experts on the panel were not convinced.
Some answers by the Chinese delegation made people wonder if it really understood the meaning of torture.
Some answers by the Chinese delegation made people wonder if it really understood the meaning of torture.

For example, the delegation claimed that solitary confinement was a management tool, not a punitive measure. It also claimed that the interrogation chair was used as a protective and security measure to prevent suspects from hurting themselves.
From the replies of the Chinese delegation, one can easily get the impression that in China torture is a common practice. It is so common that the officials didn’t realize that in their denials they actually admitted the practice of widespread torture.
From the replies of the Chinese delegation, one can easily get the impression that in China torture is a common practice.

Lawyers Tortured
The written responses in October specified that 10,000 judges and 24,039 procuratorial staff had received anti-torture training since 2012. This training has not prevented the use of torture, however.
Torture is applied by the police, the procuratorate, and even the court. The responses said the lawyers, who could only be the victims, not the perpetrators of torture, were the only ones who violated the laws.
A typical case occurred in Jiansanjiang in far northeastern Heilongjiang Province. The written responses stated that the lawyers were detained for “activities disturbing the social order.” The responses forgot, accidentally or intentionally, to mention that the “activities” were requesting the release of Falun Gong practitioners who were illegally detained in a brainwashing center. The brainwashing center is also known as a black jail—black jails happened to be another of committee’s concerns.
Protesters stage a performance on Dec. 10, 2004, showing the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners at the hands of the Chinese regime. (Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images)
The responses said that none of the lawyers was tortured, but a medical examination had found that the four detained lawyers had suffered a total of twenty-four broken ribs.
Another strange thing involved the delegation’s responses about the prosecution of those guilty of torture. According to the delegation, “there were plenty of cases of prosecuting torture offenders,” but none of these was among the high profile cases—such as Jiansanjiang—the committee asked about.
Different Definition
Obviously, the Chinese delegation didn’t consider the lawyers’ broken ribs to be the result of torture or mistreatment. The Chinese delegation explained that the definition of torture in China is different from the U.N. Convention due to China having a different culture and language.
This is very true. The culture is the Chinese Communist Party culture established after the CCP took over China in 1949. In the CCP’s dictionary, breaking ribs is called “enforcing the law.” In the rest of the world, it’s called torture.
In the CCP’s dictionary, breaking ribs is called ‘enforcing the law.’

In most cases addressed by the committee, the delegation bluntly denied the existence of torture, although its use could easily be confirmed.
After reading the written responses, I found that the delegation didn’t even need to do any research or investigation to make the replies it did. Most of the delegation’s answers consisted of either simply cutting and pasting the text of laws and regulations or totally denying certain individual cases had occurred. The delegation did this in such a perfunctory way that it didn’t even bother to check for mistakes before submitting.
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For instance, the written responses denied the allegation of organ harvesting by quoting the “Regulation on Human Organ Transplantation.” The regulation was issued in a hurry in 2007, very likely as the response to the exposure of alleged organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners in 2006. How does a 2007 regulation prove the non-existence of an alleged crime exposed a year earlier?
The written responses also claimed that “shuanggui”—the abusive interrogation of CCP members who are suspected of violating Party regulations—is part of the legal system and Party discipline in China. Actually, shuanggui is Party discipline, but definitely not part of the legal system.
Party Culture
To understand the situation in China and the strange behavior of Chinese officials, we need to look at the CCP’s history.
Torture has always been part of communist revolution and rule. In 1930, when the Red Army was still under siege in Jiangxi, Mao Zedong initiated an internal cleansing campaign to establish his absolute authority inside the Red Army.
His target was the non-existent organization called Anti-Bolshevik. Since there was no such organization, all confessions had to be extracted by torture. The campaign lasted several months and 70,000 Red Army personnel were killed. Many of them were tortured to death. Others were slaughtered.
A decade later, similar torture methods were used in the Yan’an Rectification Movement. The movement was also initiated by Mao to eliminate the influence of other factions inside the Party and to establish Mao’s absolute power in the Party leadership. One of the victims, Wang Shiwei, a journalist and writer, was wrongfully charged and arrested at the time. He was executed by an ax, probably to save a bullet.
One purpose of [the CCP’s] political campaigns is to find the worst persons and then recruit them into the Party.

After the CCP took over China, torture was expanded to the whole nation, accompanied by numerous political campaigns, from wiping out land owners in the early 1950s to the ongoing persecution of Falun Gong. One purpose of these political campaigns is to find the worst persons and then recruit them into the Party. They become the next generation leaders and the perpetrators of more torture. In the meantime, the concepts and methods of

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BEIJING—A court in southern China sentenced a leading activist who organized rallies for media freedom to six years in prison Friday in what his lawyer described as an unfair trial with an extra criminal charge added at the last minute.

Lawyer Li Jinxing said a district court in the city of Guangzhou found Yang Maodong guilty of disturbing public order. It also convicted him of provoking troubles, a charge Li said was announced minutes before the trial and which added to the stiff sentence.
Yang — better known by his penname Guo Feixiong —helped organize demonstrations and spoke in support of the editorial staff at the newspaper Southern Weekly in Guangzhou in January 2013, after its journalists complained of censorship. Journalists said the paper’s New Year’s message calling for stricter adherence to China’s constitution was altered under orders of censors.
Although China’s ruling Communist Party leadership under Xi Jinping proclaims rule of law as a priority, calls from outside the party for greater adherence to China’s constitution are seen as attempts to undermine the party’s monopoly on power.
The charge of disturbing public order typically is punishable by up to three years in jail, and the charge of provoking troubles carries a maximum sentence of five years. The addition of the second charge moments before Friday’s trial drew immediate protests from the defense team, Li said.
Calls to the Tianhe District Court in Guangzhou rang unanswered Friday.
Li said the last-minute addition was against procedural rules and allowed the defense no time to prepare. He also said that a printed verdict was issued immediately after the trial, showing that it had been prepared in advance.
“It’s the abuse of the judiciary powers at its worst,” Li said.
Yang Maoping, the activist’s sister, confirmed the lawyer’s account and said the trial amounted to “cruelty and political persecution.”
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The verdict was condemned by the human rights group Amnesty International, which called it a dark day when people advocating for press freedom and democracy “are sentenced to lengthy prison terms after sham trials.”
Yang also had encouraged activists to hold up placards in several cities. To avoid confrontation with police, the activists typically did not linger but left quickly after taking photographs of their acts, then posting the images online.
Yang and fellow activists were arrested, and such street activism has largely been stamped out over the past two and a half years.
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Also tried and convicted Friday was co-defendant Sun Desheng, who was sentenced to two and half years in prison for disturbing public order. Sun’s charge stemmed from his unfurling banners calling for public disclosure of officials’ assets and urging China’s legislature to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Also Friday, in a separate case, the court sentenced fellow activist Liu Yuandong to three years in prison on the charge of disturbing public order. Liu had joined the demonstrators in January 2013 in support of the editorial staff of Southern Weekly. He was detained the following month and stood trial in January 2014.

 

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The Chinese regime wasted no time after the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in Paris to call on the world to support its own brand of “counterterrorism” by helping it suppress the Uyghur minority group in Xinjiang, also known as East Turkestan.
The Chinese regime is stepping up its suppression of the region, mainly for business. Its new “Silk Road Economic Belt” that will build a trade route into Europe will pass through the region.
After the Paris attacks, Xinhua, the official state mouthpiece, quoted Chinese diplomat Wang Yi saying “China is also a victim of terrorism,” and that “Cracking down on the ‘East Turkestan’ terrorist forces” should become “an important component of international counterterrorism.”
While his statements went largely ignored in political circles, where the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) abuses of Uyghurs are generally known, some news outlets got caught in the stream of propaganda that has followed.
The most glaring example is a feature in TIME about the “Men and Women Who Fight China’s Shadowy ‘Anti-Terrorist’ War.” The odd piece says that after the Paris attacks, members of the CCP’s special forces spoke with TIME and started writing on social media about “their own battles.”
TIME goes over many of the questionable “terrorist attacks” China has faced, and while the piece notes some of the uncertainties around some of the incidents, it still comes off as a promotional piece for human rights abuse.
It shares the same news element as an official Xinhua piece, saying that police in Xinjiang arrested a group of 28 alleged terrorists they say killed 11 people at a coal mine. It seems to be part of a larger propaganda push, which has seen glamour shots of “anti-terror” Chinese soldiers and police forces posing together.
The TIME carries this same element with many heroic-sounding quotes from people carrying out the CCP’s harsh suppression in Xinjiang. Among them is a self-proclaimed member of the Chinese “anti-terror” police force who wrote on social media he’s fighting “Religious radicals and separatists are trying to alienate the Uighur from the Han people.”
He also claims “Some foreign forces, such as the Turkish and American democracy foundations, are also supporting the radicals and separatists.”
While the information may sound convincing on its face, a bit of research shows what’s behind these statements.
The CCP has what it calls the “three evils” of extremism, separatism, and terrorism. While fighting terrorism may sound fine to us in the West, in China its implications are much different. The main push in the CCP’s campaign isn’t to fight terrorism. Instead, it’s designed to stop terrorist elements from taking root in Xinjiang.
The “three evils” phrase brands a desire for cultural independence as “separatism” and calls any forms of resistance “extremism” and “terrorism.” Western leaders have broadly not acknowledged incidents involving Uyghurs as terrorist attacks.
According to the 2015 annual report from the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, the CCP’s campaign against the “three evils” has “manifested in a heavy-handed security apparatus and led to the adoption of a repressive approach to Islam in Xinjiang.”
“As in Tibet, many residents of Xinjiang do not culturally or politically identify with China, and some Uyghur groups advocate for greater autonomy or full independence for Xinjiang,” it states, noting that the CCP “views the existence of these groups as a threat to China’s sovereignty and security.”
The CCP’s solution to this issue has been integration policies, yet as the report states, “Chinese integration policies in Xinjiang are often violently repressive, alienating Uyghurs and fueling ethnic tensions.”
Xinjiang is home to 21.8 million people and 13 major ethnic groups, according to the report. An estimated 46 percent of them are Uyghurs, and the Sunni Islam is the main religion.
The CCP has used a “multi-tiered system of surveillance, control, and suppression of religious activity aimed at Xinjiang’s Uyghurs,” according to Human Rights Watch.
“At its most extreme, peaceful activists who practice their religion in a manner deemed unacceptable by state authorities or CCP officials are arrested, tortured, and at times executed,” it states, adding that on the routine level, “many Uyghurs experience harassment in their daily lives.”
“The Chinese government has instituted controls over who can be a cleric, what version of the Koran may be used, where religious gatherings may be held, and what may be said on religious occasions,” it states.
In recent years, the CCP has also banned long beards and Islamic veils. It has also prohibited Muslims from celebrating Ramadan, and at one point even organized a beer festival in a Muslim town—since Muslims aren’t supposed to drink alcohol.
The CCP’s harsh suppression of the region has likewise led to several protests and riots. The most visible was in the Xinjiang capital of Urumqi in 2009. Chinese police responded to the riots using live ammunition. CCP sources claim 197 people were killed, while World Uyghur Congress says the death toll was closer to 600.
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There were similar riots in 2013 and 2014. The congressional report states, “China invariably refers to such incidents as acts of terrorism. Some undoubtedly are, but in many cases it is nearly impossible for outsiders to assess the veracity of the Chinese government’s accounts of ‘terrorist’ incidents, which likely exaggerate the ‘three evils’ threat to justify crackdowns. “
The report cites Andrew Small, transatlantic fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, giving his take on “terrorism” in Xinjiang.
Small says the CCP has the “tendency to attribute almost any act of violence in Xinjiang to ‘separatists,’ to claim malevolent intent behind even the most peaceful of protests, and to criminalize political groups.”
He said this “leaves the line between the terrorist, the activist, and the aggrieved citizenry permanently blurred.”

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Anastasia Lin, Miss World Canada, should be in China right now, competing for the Miss World Title. But she isn’t. She never received her invitation letter from China—the one issued to every other contestant—so she couldn’t apply for a visa.
Her supporters have started a petition on change.org aimed at Chinese leader Xi Jinping asking him to intervene to let Lin into the country.
Lin needed the letter by Friday, Nov. 20, to make it to Hainan Island, the site of the competition, in time or she’d be disqualified. Of course, in extenuating circumstances exceptions can be made, but time is running out, which is the reason for the 11th-hour signature campaign.
The petition letter asserts that Lin has been excluded because she’s been a vocal critic of human rights abuses in China.
The Chinese-born actress was crowned Miss World Canada in May on the promise to “be a voice for the voiceless.” And it’s a promise she has kept.
We ask you allow Ms. Lin to travel to China immediately and participate in the Miss World final— Change.org petition to Chinese leader Xi Jinping

“Ms. Lin is being discriminated against because she has spoken out about human rights abuses in China, including the persecution of Falun Gong, a meditation practice that has been persecuted in China since 1999,” reads the letter.
The letter mentions how her father in Changsha, China, was visited by state security personnel shortly after she won the beauty pageant in Canada. Before the visit, he had told his daughter how proud he was of her accomplishments. After the visit, he told her to stop speaking about human rights.
“My dad was really scared. He said, ‘You must stop what you are doing now, otherwise we will just go our separate ways.’” Lin told Epoch Times at the time. Lin and her father haven’t been able to speak openly since.
Yet Lin refuses to be intimidated. She publicly exposed the pressure her father was receiving and in July, she even testified before the U.S. Congressional Executive Commission on China at a hearing on human rights abuses in that country.
Her view is that to give into the Chinese regime’s pressure is precisely what perpetuates that behavior.
“If it works on me, it will work on other people,” she previously told Epoch Times. “The more time that this kind of tactic works on people, the more they will apply it.”
The petition urges Xi Jinping to do the right thing if China is to be respected internationally.
“If China aspires to be a responsible member of the international community it should behave according to the standard of that community, including respecting basic freedoms and different viewpoints.”
The letter concludes with a direct appeal to Xi to intervene on Lin’s behalf:
“We ask you allow Ms. Lin to travel to China immediately and participate in the Miss World final on December 19, 2015. We also demand you abandon any attempts to intimidate her family members.”

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While most countries are looking for ways to stop illegal immigrants from entering, the Chinese regime is looking for ways to prevent its own citizens from escaping.
A new frontier monitoring system was detailed by the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) state-run China Daily news outlet on Nov. 6. It uses advanced radars and unmanned aircraft to track people, and has already been deployed by border defense units in Xinjiang, Yunnan, and Tibet.
While the system is being touted as a way to stop drug trafficking and illegal border crossings, it will likely be used to track and arrest persecuted minority groups—particularly Muslim Uyghurs in Xinjiang, and Tibetans as they try to escape the Chinese regime.
According to Alistair Currie, spokesman for the activist group Free Tibet, the new surveillance system adds yet another layer of risk to Tibetans hoping to escape the Chinese regime’s rule, which often means taking the dangerous hike to Nepal.
“It is already extremely difficult for Tibetans to escape from Tibet, especially via overland routes,” Currie said, in an email interview.
Chinese soldiers along the borders have been known to shoot and kill Tibetan refugees—including women and children—as they try to flee China.
These killings were caught on film in 2008, and showed Chinese soldiers shooting Tibetans near the Nangpa La Pass, as they were trying to reach Nepal.
With the new system, according to China Daily, “people trying to cross the border will be detected,” and it then “automatically notifies soldiers.”
Over the years, according to Currie, this journey has only become more difficult for Tibetans. He said they’ve “seen a huge decline in numbers of refugees,” which went from thousands per year, to hundreds, and to possibly just dozens now.
He said Tibetans can be creative in finding escape routes out of China, but with the new system, it “certainly looks like it will make it more difficult for them to do so in future.”
Currie said it’s difficult to say how the system is being perceived by Tibetans since “it is extremely hard to get information out of Tibet because of the level of surveillance and risk.”
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The system was designed by the Southwestern Institute of Technology and Physics, which is a subsidiary of China North Industries Group Corp—one of the CCP’s main weapons manufacturers.
According to China Daily, the surveillance system is able to watch the borders around the clock, and functions in all weather. It uses electro-optical devices, radars, communications equipment, command-and-control instruments, and tools for image analysis.
A representative from Southwestern Institute of Technology and Physics, Mao Weichen, told China Daily that the CCP currently has border monitoring systems in place—particularly in Xinjiang, Guangdong, and Heilongjiang, but these mainly rely on just video surveillance.
The new system, Mao said, “has a wider coverage and more deterrence thanks to the use of drones and acoustic weapons.”
Acoustic weapons use sound to injure, incapacitate, or kill people. Weapons of these types are typically used for crowd dispersal with more powerful ones causing pain and disorientation, while lighter ones are known to cause nausea or discomfort.
Currie said the concern over the new surveillance system goes beyond Tibetans trying to cross the borders, however.
“Having a ‘spy-in-the-sky’ in border areas also increases the opportunities for the state to monitor Tibetan activity in those areas unrelated to the border itself,” he said.
The CCP often has a tough time monitoring people in remote areas like Tibet, he said, noting the new systems seems “like a new mechanism for state control.”
While news of human rights abuse in Tibet has become quieter, the CCP’s suppression of Tibetans and other groups in China hasn’t slowed down.
The slowing of information can be partly attributed to the Chinese regime becoming more efficient at suppression.
“We are certainly aware of instances of torture several years ago and there’s little reason to believe that will have changed,” Currie said, noting Free Tibet recently received a document from 2014 that details rewards for Chinese border guards in Purang County, which borders Nepal.
The document outlines a Soviet-like system to reward people for turning in their neighbors. It outlines how the CCP will reward people for information on “illegal escape and entry into the country” and information on “separatist activities” of Tibetans still loyal to the Dalai Lama.
Rewards range from 500 to 50,000 yuan, and the document states if “any person” arrests the person in question, and brings them to the Public Security Bureau, the person “will be rewarded two and a half times more than the prescribed reward.”
“For information collected by two or more farmers and nomads, an average reward will be given according to the number of people,” it states.
The new system will take what is already an extremely authoritarian program to a new level.
“Clearly, a system based on technology offers substantial advantages over the use of community members who will usually be extremely resistant to providing such assistance to the regime,” Currie said.
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He noted that the CCP’s state mouthpieces tend to exaggerate in their reports, but the system will build on other systems currently in place—which have already made escape very difficult for Tibetans.
“China’s national security infrastructure in the west—including roads, rail, and airports, which are proliferating in Tibet—is equally useful for enabling the deployment of forces for repression in Tibet wherever its needed,” Currie said.
He added, “this project is entirely consistent with that pattern.”

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