Hello, and welcome to the weekly FGMtv news review. I'm Susan Mitchell.
§ Here at FGMtv we focus on programs and news that illuminate the truth of Falun Gong, which is also known as Falun Dafa.
§ Falun Dafa is a traditional Chinese spiritual discipline that includes exercise and meditation. Its principles are based on being true, good, and enduring.
§ The practice began in China in 1992 and quickly spread by word of mouth throughout the country.
§ In 1998, a government survey concluded that the number of practitioners exceeded membership in the communist party.
§ One year later, dictator Jiang Zemin began a brutal persecution that violates not only the Chinese constitution, but also international treaties signed by China.
Our top story this week:
U.S. Congress Holds Hearing on the Group Attack Case on Falun Gong practitioners in New York
§ In last week's program, we reported that on June 23rd, several Falun Gong practitioners were assaulted in front of a restaurant in New York's Chinatown, by members of a Chinese association that has close ties to the Chinese consulate.
§ On July 21, the U.S. Congress held a hearing regarding the violent group attack. Dennis Halpin, a staff member for a member of the U.S. Committee on International Relations and more than 20 congressional representatives attended.
§ A videotape of the attack was played and the attendees were advised that Liang Guanjun, president of the New York Confederation of Chinese Associations who had been arrested for his part in the attack, had interfered many times with Falun Dafa activities in the past.
§ A representative from the office of New Jersey Senator Lautenberg said, "The beating of Falun Gong practitioners in New York is absolutely unacceptable. Senator Lautenberg thinks it constitutes a hate crime. If the Chinese government really took part in this and is interfering with freedom of belief in our land, it absolutely cannot be tolerated. Senator Lautenberg is paying close attention to this case, and he hopes the Chinese government will immediately stop interfering with freedom of belief."
§ On July 22nd, the day after the Congressional hearing, Members of Congress joined thousands of practitioners for a rally on Capitol Hill.
§ Congresswoman Iliana Ros-Lehtinen, addressing the crowd, said, "We will not stop until the reign of terror, which began four years ago, and the persecution of the Falun Gong is brought to an end."
§ The night before the rally, practitioners and supporters of Falun Gong gathered at the Washington Monument for a candlelight vigil honoring those who have given their lives in the plight for freedom of belief in China.
An Appeal to the International Criminal Court (ICC) from Qinhuangdao City, China
§ Falun Gong practitioners and their families in Qinhuangdao City of China have appealed to the International Criminal Court in The Hague for justice.
§ They detailed atrocities committed by officials of the 610 Office, the all-powerful department set up by former Chinese President Jiang Zemin specifically to persecute Falun Gong.
§ Most recently, on June 7th this year, the 610 Office and local police kidnapped more than 70 practitioners, torturing and beating them to make them give up practicing Falun Gong. People have been blinded, had their bones fractured and suffered paralysis from such barbaric treatment.
§ This is just one legal appeal that has recently been submitted in the world wide drive to bring Jiang Zemin to justice through the courts.
§ Jiang also faces genocide suits in the U.S., France and Switzerland. A coalition of human rights lawyers is launching similar lawsuits in every country that has ratified UN treaties on genocide and torture.
Happy Family Reunion
§ California Congressman Pete Stark (centre back row of the photo) was instrumental in allowing a Beijing couple reunite with their son in America. Mr. Bian Xuzhuang (on the far right) and his wife, Shen Shumin, standing next to him both practice Falun Gong.
§ They fled to Thailand when police in China constantly harrassed them, ransacking their apartment, breaking a window in mid-winter and keeping them under house arrest in the freezing cold.
§ They were recently reunited with their son because of Congressman Stark's help and travelled to Washington DC from their new home in California to thank him in person.
Latin Americans & Chinese Dance together in Toronto
§ To encourage tourism after the SARS tragedy in Toronto, the City has organized several entertainment events.
§ Lotus Performing Arts Group, made up of some young Falun Gong dancers, were invited by Mr. Chuquibuara, chairman of United Peruvians, to participate in a Latin American event in Nathan Phillips Square in front of Toronto's City Hall. They were very enthusiastically received.
Thanks for watching the FGMtv weekly news review.
I'm Susan Mitchell. See you next week!
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