Falun Gong is freely practiced in more than 50 countries, but relentlessly persecuted in China. The peaceful courage of practitioners there has shocked their oppressors and moved the people of the world. While China continues to block information about the persecution, FGMtv brings you the stories you may not hear anywhere else.
Hello, and welcome to the FGMtv weekly news review
on September 10th, 2002
I am David Tompkins
In this week's update from China´
， The number of Falun Gong practitioners verified to have died while in detention is 477, with details of 8 more deaths received in the past week. However, reliable sources inside China put the actual death count in the thousands.
， In the last 7 days, reports of persecution have come in from 14 provinces and from the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, and Chongqing
， 334 people solemnly declared their statements extracted under torture are null and void. They said they intend to continue to practice Falun Gong.
Our top story this week:
Falun Gong practitioners clarify the truth at a secret conference of 610 officials from Mudanjiang City of Heilongjiang Province.
And some of our other stories:
， Concern in Hong Kong about a soon-to-be-released report
， Barbarity inside a forced labor camp
， A police officer threatens to cripple a peasant child
， An area 40x the size of Hong Kong is sinking
， Practitioners at the UN World Summit in Johannesburg
， A special report from Albania
， And disturbing news from Denmark where the Culture Minister gave in to pressure from Chinese Embassy and revoked an invitation to practitioners to perform at an art program at the Asia-EU Summit
， The "610 Office" in Mudanjiang City of Heilongjiang Province held a secret conference in the mountains. This is a government agency created specifically to persecute Falun Gong. It has power over all branches of the government including the judiciary, the military, the police, and regional and municipal governments.
， With wisdom, Falun Dafa practitioners found out the time and location of the secret conference. Before it started, they painted lots of bright red phrases announcing, "Falun Dafa is good!" along both sides of the highways towards the mountains. They also painted attractive phrases to awaken people in nearby villages, towns, scenic spots, and detention centers.
， Practitioners even painted on the steep cliffs. Having been denied access to all normal means of communication such as newspapers, magazines, radio and TV, Falun Gong practitioners have resorted to many creative and sometimes unusual methods for clarifying the true facts about the persecution of Falun Gong to the Chinese people.
， Yellow Falun Dafa banners glittering on the tops of tall trees became a beautiful scene at the tourist resorts.
， An editorial in the Sunday Morning Post in Hong Kong entitled 'End the guessing game', expressed concern about how the SAR (Special Administrative Region) Government will safeguard human rights in the future.
， Article 23 of the Basic Law, calling on the Hong Kong administration to pass laws to protect the central government from treason, sedition, subversion and secession, has long cast a shadow over the idea of 'one country, two systems'.
， By its very nature, the proposed laws give rise to concerns they will be used to restrict freedom of expression and crack down on groups targeted by Beijing. The shadow loomed larger than ever last week as it became clear that these laws are finally on the way. A government consultation paper could be released as early as next month.
， Secretary for Justice Elsie Leung Oi-sie has sought to calm fears, stressing that freedom of expression will be protected. But she has also spoken of circumstances in which some forms of expression may constitute a crime.
， Chaoyanggou Forced Labor Camp in Changchun City, Jilin Province has detained more than 400 Falun Dafa practitioners.
， The guards force inmates to keep practitioners under surveillance and to torture them for extended periods of time.
， They are also forced to read materials that slander the practice of Falun Gong. The guards beat them if they refuse to do so.
， Since April 6, 2002, the torture has escalated. Guards shorten the terms of criminal inmates who collaborate and beat practitioners.
， Many times the inmates have beaten practitioners from 3 in the morning until midnight.
， Practitioners have reported being summoned to the guard's office after extended periods of torture.
， There they are tied to the four corners of a bunk bed that has been placed in an upright position, and seven guards assault them with all kinds of torture devices such as bamboo boards, spades, wooden batons, and electric batons.
， Practitioner Zhou Ji'an¨s face was so horribly beaten that it was swollen beyond recognition. He could not wear shoes and he could not walk because his feet were so badly swollen.
， Practitioner Wang Guoxiang was beaten for the entire morning and his clothes were torn to shreds. Half naked, he had to walk before the squad with a placard of derogatory names hanging from his neck.
， Wang Tianming, another practitioner, was beaten with an electrical baton from his neck to his feet.
A police officer threatens to cripple a peasant couple's only son
， Yang Wenhua, a 48-year-old peasant living in Huangniuchang Village, Yanshou County was detained from January to April 2002. After ransacking his home, the police even arrested his daughter who had recently married. They held a hunger strike in protest, and they were released six days later.
， Yang stayed at home for only one night. The local police went to his home the next day to arrest him again. But while he was changing his clothes he escaped by jumping out his window. When the police chief couldn't find him, he kicked Yang's wife, knocking her to the ground. He then said that he would make their only son a cripple if she didn't go out and find him. He also threatened their one-year-old granddaughter.
， Yang¨s wife took her children and went into the mountains, afraid of bringing trouble to whoever was kind enough to provide shelter for them.
， Yang went to an uninhabited mountain 10 miles from home and he could go no further. After the brutality he had experienced in more than six periods of illegal detention he gradually lost consciousness and passed away on the hillside. When his body was discovered on April 17th, he was lying with his hands folded in front of his chest. His eyes were wide open and staring at the sky.
， The county's "610 Office" and the police department ordered a hasty cremation. Then together with the village office, they announced that they would arrest any practitioner who went to his funeral.
， According to an official report, the North China Plateau, one of the country's most populated areas, is forming the largest underground funnel in the world due to excessive use of ground water.
， The report was cited in The Apple Daily News, a Mainland Chinese newspaper.
， The funnel area is expanding and has reached over 40,000 square kilometers, or 40 times the size of Hong Kong.
， The area faces the threat of sinking, endangering the life and property of millions of residents.
， Many mid-sized cities such as Tianjin, Cangzhou, and Dezhou are located at the center of the funnel.
， According to hydrology experts, Hebei province has always overused ground water to make up for a severe shortage in their water supply.
， With the present section reaching 50,000 square kilometers, the North China Plateau is the largest sinking area in China.
Now to South Africa
， From August 26 to September 4, 2002, the United Nations World Summit on Sustainable Development was held in Johannesburg.
， Over 45,000 representatives from many non-governmental organizations and governments from 140 countries attended it.
， Falun Gong practitioners from South Africa, Australia, Singapore and Lesotho also participated, clarifying the facts about the persecution and introducing Falun Dafa.
， Many representatives visited the photo exhibition. They were all shocked to learn about the brutality of the persecution of Falun Gong. They expressed their support. Some representatives also came to join the exercise classes.
， Many media interviewed the practitioners, including CNN, BBC, South Africa Radio Station and TV station, and ETV.
And now Erkanda Bujari brings us a Special Report from Albania
And disturbing news from Denmark where´
， the Culture Minister Mr Brian Nikkelsen was pressured by Jiang's regime to exclude Falun Gong practitioners from an Art program called Asian Comments at the 2002 Asia-EU Summit in Copenhagen.
， Falun Gong practitioners were originally invited to present their art performances, which have won the Community First Prize at the Cavalcade of the Edinburgh International Festival 2002.
， However, the Chinese Embassy threatened to pull out all Chinese community performances unless Falun Gong practitioners were excluded from Asian Comments.
， According to the event organizer, the Danish government officials bowed to the pressure.