China Human Rights Forum Held at the U.N.
  • Fri, 04/10/2009 - 12:00

By Arleen Freeman
Epoch Times Staff

On March 11, 2009, the Conscience Foundation (www.consciencefoundation.org) held a forum at the United Nations in Geneva to convene the groups that are victim to the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) persecution. Over 100 delegates and NGO representatives attended.

This year represents the 60th anniversary of the CCP's tyranny in China, the 50th year since the suppression of the Tibetan uprising, the 30th year since the suppression of the "XiDan democratic wall," the 20th anniversary of the June 4 Tiananmen Square Massacre, and the 10th anniversary of the persecution of Falun Gong. These anniversaries remind the world that the CCP has not only committed the most severe violations of human rights in history, but has also conducted the longest persecution.

The deterioration of human rights in China is the result of the CCP's rule. However, international society has also played a role in that it has ignored or even been complicit in China's severe human rights violations in the interest of financial gain. On March 11, 2009, in order to further expose the CCP's violations of human rights, to arouse the conscience of international society and to integrate global action, the Conscience Foundation, with the support of Interfaith International, held a forum in Geneva about China's Human Rights, involving the many human rights groups from around the world that attended the 10th U.N. Human Rights Council session.

People Who Value Human Rights Condemn the CCP

The Conscience Foundation organized this forum several months ago. By using manufacturing lies, framing groups such as Tibetans who value independence, identifying groups as "terrorists," etc., the CCP persecutes many groups and spreads hatred at the same time. In order to escape condemnation, the CCP uses such words as "harmony," "legal governance," and "new policy" for the persecution it commits.

In its preparation for the forum, the Conscience Foundation clearly recognized that no matter how the CCP divides the issue of human rights into "Tibetan independence," "Xinjiang independence," and "the issue of religion," there is only one problem: the CCP's tyranny. Only by solving this problem can humankind peacefully resolve other issues.

Based on this, Mr. Jian Zhang, the student leader of the security team for the June 4 democratic movement; Mr. Tseten Samdup Chhoekzapa, the representative of the Dalai Lama; Mr. Dolkum Isa, secretary of the world Uyghur Congress; and Ms. Haiyan Wang, a Falun Gong practitioner who lost vision in her right eye because of the persecution, attended the forum. Mr. Xiqiu Fu, also known as Bob Fu, chairman of China Aid Association was one of the speakers at the forum. Mr. Fu, along with Falun Gong practitioners, helped to rescue lawyer Gao Zhisheng's family members who had been kept under house arrest in China. Mr. Jian Zhang, now a priest in France, gave a speech about the persecution suffered by Christians in mainland China. Mr. Willy Fautre, chairman of International Human Rights Without Frontiers, also spoke at the forum.

Dr. Charles Graves, secretary of Interfaith International, and Dr. Shizhong Chen, president of the Conscience Foundation, co-chaired the forum. In his opening remarks, Dr. Graves said, "China has a 5,000-year civilization and has been more advanced than other countries most of the time. However, the current Chinese government cannot tolerate different voices and opinions. Internationally, the popular method used to resolve conflict is dialogue. The Chinese government uses all of its efforts to
suppress its own people, while, at the same time, conducting dialogues internationally. That is the reason we hold this forum, we want to see what kinds of different opinions the Chinese government can not tolerate."

'China can have harmony only by stopping its violations of human rights'

Mr. Jian Zhang, who was one of the student leaders of the June 4 massacre in 1989, gave the first speech. He briefly looked back at the June 4 massacre and the incident in which he was hit by three bullets (details can be found in the movie, "Bullet to the Heart," produced by the Conscience Foundation and shown on NTDTV). Mr. Zhang told the forum "Twenty years ago, the CCP killed many Beijing residents and students with tanks and guns. However, even today it still denies what it did. On Tiananmen Square, I was hit with three bullets. One of them was taken out last year. A French TV station filmed the whole operation and this program will be aired on June third by all major TV stations in Europe. This program will let people witness the bullet from the June fourth massacre. Mr. Zheng Fang, my school mate, just escaped from China. He lost his legs under a tank."

Mr. Zhang questioned why the CCP does not dare to acknowledge the killings it committed. He also mentioned that the human rights situation in China became even worse after the June 4 Massacre, but the CCP keeps talking about "harmony." The harmony of the CCP comes from silencing the Chinese people. Finally, Mr. Zhang pointed out, "China can have harmony only by stopping its violations of human rights.".

There Has Been No Improvement of Human Rights in China

Mr. Fautre, chairman of International Human Rights Without Frontiers, from Belgium, addressed the CCP's persecution of belief and religion. He said that all religious groups' "legal activities" are under the control of the CCP. They must be registered as religious associate organizations sanctioned by the CCP. The CCP has only approved five religious associations and does not acknowledge those groups that are reluctant to be controlled by the CCP. Falun Gong practitioners are still being persecuted. Mr. Fautre also gave examples of the persecution of freedom of religion and belief.
 
In December 2008, International Human Rights Without Frontiers organized committees from the European Parliament's Human Rights Council to go to China to investigate. This group included some members of the European Parliament and some NGOs. "We investigated the situation of human rights in China. In 2001, when the CCP won the hosting of the Olympics, it pledged that this was its chance to improve human rights in China. We conducted our investigation before and after the Beijing Olympics. Unfortunately, no improvements ever took place." The CCP never fulfilled its pledge to improve human rights by hosting the Olympics.

During his speech, Mr. Fautre also stated, "The CCP has not made any improvements in human rights and it doesn't want to make any improvements. This is just like the dialogue between the CCP and the EU and the CCP and the Dalai Lama, which have had no effect. In China, the CCP refuses to hold dialogues with human rights groups, human rights defenders and lawyers, etc."

Tibet Sacrificed Independence to Preserve Culture

Mr. Tseten Samdup Choekyapa, the representative of the Dalai Lama, addressed how the Tibetan people always treat the Han people as siblings. "However, the CCP fabricates all kinds of lies. Before, Tibet was an independent country, but the Dalai Lama gave up its claim to independence in order to protect Tibetan culture." He thought that the culture would be completely destroyed if Tibetans continued to appeal for independence. "Therefore we asked to keep our own culture and traditions and we wish to protect Tibetan traditional culture before the CCP destroys it. Whether or not Tibet is independent is not an issue; the importance is to protect the culture.

"However, the CCP deceives the Han people by spreading lies about Tibetan independence, while destroying Tibetan culture at the same time. It doesn't allow teaching with the Tibetan language; it destroys religious temples and destroys the Tibetan environment. Furthermore, the highway now brings thousands of people into Tibet every day. These are all the final solutions the CCP is using to completely destroy the Tibetan living environment and culture, just like what it did to Xingjian and Mongolia."

Mr. Choekyapa said that the persecution during the Beijing Olympics was even worse. Many Tibetans lost their family members. Tibetans didn't celebrate the New Year this year. Instead they memorialized those family members who lost their lives. At that time, the CCP sent its army to Tibet and also drove out foreign reporters. Therefore, nobody knew what really happened in Tibet.

Racial genocide' in Xinjiang

Mr. Dolkum Isa, secretary of the world Uyghur Congress, said that eastern Turkey has been controlled by the CCP since 1949. It has been 60 years of CCP persecution. As a result of the CCP's destruction, Uyghurs have become a minority on their own land. In the beginning, the CCP promised to protect Xingjiang culture; however, since 2003, the Uyghur language has not been allowed to be taught. Since 2006, only Mandarin is allowed, even in kindergarten. All Uyghur teachers have been forced to leave their positions. In the meantime, the CCP has "Hanized" the Uyghurs by fostering immigration, forcing Uyghur women to undergo sterilization operations and forcing Uyghur women who have reached the legal age of marriage to go to the mainland. He called this "racial genocide."
 
Mr. Isa pointed out that the CCP violates Uyghurs' rights and doesn't allow Uyghurs to express different opinions. He told of his own experience, "Some university students were arrested just because they distributed several fliers on campus. The CCP calls any peaceful activities ¡®terrorism.' Since 2003, I have been ranked in 3rd place on the blacklist; however I never saw any gun or bullet in my life.

"It is such severe, unfair treatment. By taking advantage of this opportunity, the CCP labels all Uyghurs as ¡®terrorists.'" Representing the World Uyghur Congress, Mr. Isa said that they still propose to solve the issue peacefully and they call for dialogue. Even in this situation, they still hope international society can help the political dialogue with the CCP.

Falun Gong Practitioner Tortured and Lost Sight in Her Right Eye

Ms. Haiyan Wang, a Falun Gong practitioner, exposed the brutal persecution by telling of her own experience of losing the sight in her right eye as a result of torture. According to Ms. Wang, "I used to be an excellent fashion designer and had a very happy family. Since 1999, the start of the persecution of Falun Gong, I have been illegally detained six times, put into labor camps twice, had my home searched twice, and had money extorted from my family members twice.

"On June 13, 2004, when I distributed material clarifying the truth about Falun Gong in a shopping center, ¡®610 officers' [an extrajudiciary office created by the CCP for the persecution of Falun Gong] brutally beat me and pushed me to the floor. The right side of my head hit the floor first, which induced damage to my right eye and my brain and I lost consciousness. The policemen took me back to the detention center to continue the persecution. That night I lost consciousness again and was sent to the hospital. When the doctor brought me back to life and prepared to let me stay in the hospital, the policemen instead took me away." In the next 9 months, Ms. Wang was detained in a labor camp for 2 years. Finally her family members found her and applied for medical parole. However she already missed the best time for healing. Her left eye went blind and her right eye completely lost function. After she started to practice Falun Gong again, her left eye partially recovered.

During her illegal detention, the police also kept harassing her mother, who is a Falun Gong practitioner. Her husband was forced to divorce her because he could not bear the CCP's continual harassment and coercion.

Ms. Wang knows that there are many Falun Gong practitioners experiencing the same severe persecution that she did. Two of her fellow practitioners were tortured to death. When Ms. Wang told the delegates about her and her fellow practitioner's experiences, many of them were moved to tears.
'The CCP is against God'

For those witnesses of the persecution, Dr. Charles Graves asked the question again: "Why can't the CCP tolerate those different groups and why can't the CCP hear different voices?"
 
Dr. Shizhong Chen, co-chair of the forum, answered the question raised by Dr. Graves and pointed out that no regime in history has persecuted so many religious groups such as Falun Gong, Christians, Tibetan Buddhists, and Uyghur Muslims. The reason is that the CCP is atheist and is against God. All human civilizations and every nation's culture come from a belief in God. The CCP persecutes all groups because of its atheism, which is bringing disaster to the whole world.

Finally Dr. Chen addressed that the CCP violates human rights in the name of the "legal system." Recently, human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng wrote a letter to the international community, in which he exposed the torture he experienced at the hands of the CCP. Dr. Chen described how many other human rights lawyers have been persecuted severely. Dr. Chen asked, "How can a true 'legal system' persecute defenders of the law? This should enable Western democratic countries to perceive the lies of the CCP's legal system. Certainly, the CCP always denies its torture, and violations of freedom of belief and freedom of speech, etc., which the whole world knows. Given that this is not a well-established government, why do Western countries believe the false appearance of economic development and put their hope on China for solving the world's financial crisis? Aren't they blinded by a lust for gain?"
 
The Hope of Human Rights in China Is That the People Wake Up

During the Q&A section, many audience members asked questions. One asked what hope there is for the improvement of human rights in China. One speaker told that there are over 50 million Chinese people who have withdrawn from the CCP. This activity reflects that people are waking up and that, in the near future, the whole world will see the truth about what is happening. It will arouse their sense of righteousness and their conscience. It is not just the hope of China, but it also helps people find their true human nature.
Condemnation From Citizens Inside China

Last year, when the Conscience Foundation and Interfaith International held a forum in the U.N. regarding the Sichuan earthquake, the CCP interfered. Just hours before the forum began, the CCP influenced the staff of the U.N. secretary's office to change the conference room in the name of the Germany delegates. Therefore, some audience members could not find the location.

At that time there were more than 700 netizens from China, who attended the forum online. They all condemned the CCP when they heard the news. Later when the organizer inquired, the Germany delegates said they did not ask for the room change. Instead, the staff from the secretary's office notified them of the room change. Further investigation showed that the CCP arranged the room change.

The same thing happened this year. The staff from the secretary's office asked for the room to be changed in the name of the chairman of the U.N. Human Rights Council. However, the conference room remained empty the whole time. In the temporary room for the forum, someone had removed the electronic card for the Internet. As a result, 3,000 netizens from China, who were to participate, could not connect to the forum. When Mr. Jian Zhang sent this news to the netizens in China, those 3,000 people were angry and held their meeting voluntarily. It lasted more than 10 hours. When he understood what happened, Dr. Graves sent a formal protest letter to the chairmen of the Human Rights Council.

Several false NGOs supported by the CCP also attended the forum. They had a special name, "Government Organized NGOs," or "GONGOs" in short form. During the Q&A section, several GONGOs continually attacked the speakers and defended the CCP. One of them attacked the Tibetan culture and the Tibetan system and said only the CCP's democratic reforms could bring progress to Tibet. He also said that he knows the democratic reforms quite well because he used to be the deputy section chief for the democratic reform in an area of Tibet. One delegate asked right away how a governmental deputy section chief could become the speaker for an NGO, saying it was easy to judge what kind of NGO it really was.

Last Updated
Apr 9, 2009

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