A Victim of Torture's Experience

By Winston Liu
Forum on Human Rights in China, 214 Wellington Building, Parliament Buildings, Ottawa
May 27, 2009

I am a student at the University of Calgary. I had a chance to flee from China to Canada in 2005 when admitted by the University of Calgary for a PhD program.

I was detained four times from 1999 to 2003 in China for practicing Falun Gong.

The 1st detention was in July, 1999. I went to the state petition bureau to appeal to the higher authorities for stopping the hate propaganda against Falun Gong. The policemen beat me down and dragged me by my feet about 50 meters to a police car. My clothes were torn off, causing bleeding lacerations on my arms. The police also kicked me in my head. Then I was detained for 12 hours.

The 2nd detention was held for 15 days in Jan. 2000. In October, 1999, I was suspended from my PhD studies after I refused to sign a statement denouncing Falun Gong. The university then held me in the University Hostel and asked my parents to come to press me to give up Falun Gong. The pressure was also inflicted in my parents, they were distressed about my future and the implications for my life, and they were even in tears when pressed me to give up. At that time, my wife was a graduate student too and she was dismissed from Tsinghua University for refusing to renounce Falun Gong.

The 3rd detention was lasted for 30 days in June 2000 for my peaceful appeal to an end to the persecution.

The fourth detention was in January 2001 and I was sentenced for 3 years. On January 1st, 2001 Policemen broke into my home in the early morning, abducted my wife and me, and confined us in a detention center, apparently to await trial.

After almost one year of abuse and detention, the Beijing Intermediate Court put six Falun Gong practitioners including my wife and me on show trial. We were accused of downloading information about Falun Gong from the Interne and spreading it, hanging up Falun Gong banners t. At the end of the show trial, my wife was sentenced to twelve years in jail, and I was sentenced to three years. Other fellow practitioners were sentenced to 11, 10, 9 and 5 years, respectively. Amnesty International reported on this case in 2002.

A lawyer was assigned to me during the trial, but he was warned by the judge to not defend my rights, or he would lose his license. He appeared frustrated and said “sorry” when he interviewed me before trial. He also told me that all cases regarding Falun Gong were controlled by 6-10 office, a new bureau created in 1999 to destroy Falun Gong, with powers over all other levels of law-enforcement and government offices.

For the three years that I was jailed policemen repeatedly beat me and shocked me with an electric baton and threatened to kill me. When being shocked, my heart froze and the smell of burning skin filled the room. The feeling was something I never want to recall. They also deprived me of sleep for many nights in order to break my nerves.

The mental torture I endured was worse than the physical abuse. I spent six months in solitary confinement in a tiny room. The police told me directly that they would try to drive me insane if I continued with my practice of Falun Gong. I was regularly forced to view hate materials slandering Falun Gong. I was also forced to have extensive medical exams. I understand now that very likely these tests gave the officials the information they needed to use me as an unwilling organ donor. Towards the end of my jail time, my hair had turned grey and I was on the verge of a mental collapse.

I was released in 2003, but the police continued to monitor my cell phone and home phone after.

Due to the arbitrary nature of the persecution, I was lucky to be able to leave China to pursue my PhD studies in Calgary. When I saw local practitioners of Falun Gong on a summer Sunday morning doing the exercises together in Prince’s Island Park, I was overwhelmed by the freedom I could actually enjoy as a human being. Millions like me are not so lucky.

Why I do not give up Falun Gong?

I have benefited greatly from practicing Falun Gong and this ancient teaching taught me the true meaning of life and taught me to be responsible to myself and others, to be truthful, compassionate and tolerant. I felt it was my responsibility to tell people the truth of Falun Gong facing the unfair and brutal crackdown.

Because the Chinese dictator Jiang Zemin was jealous of Falun Gong’s popularity and paranoid to lose power and also due to the evil nature of the Communist party to rule with lies, viciousness and violence, that are opposite to the high moral teachings of Falun Gong, the eradication campaign against Falun Gong was launched by the regime in July 1999.

Today in China, the crime is still going on. My school mate, Yu Ping, a former PhD student, was sent to labor camp in April, 2008. My Friend, Zheng Xujun, also a former PhD student, was sent to labor camp in Feb. 2008. These cases were taken place right before the Beijing Olympic Games. According to the Falun Gong Human Right Information Center, more than 87,000 cases of torture have been collected, and more than 200,000 practitioners have been sent to prison or labor camps and over a million for various length of time in various detentions. More than 3,200 practitioners have been torture to death, including 104 occurred last year, before Olympics.

Today, my wife is suffering continuous abuse, brainwashing and heavy labor in Beijing Women’s prison. She requested communication with me, but was not allowed. Her parents told me her health is in poor condition. From the age of 28 to 36 she has served almost nine years in jail. She has had the best years of her life stolen from her by this evil regime. I miss her very, very much.

I am only one of the 12 Canadians whose family members are currently being incarcerated in China. It is time for the western world to take action to help end these crimes committed by the communist regime against innocent people.

I appeal to all people of goodness and justice, I appeal to all governments and organizations, not to keep silent about such crimes. I thank you on behalf of those who are suffering.

Thank you.