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 Zhen, Shan, Ren - being true, good, and enduring, which is also translated as Truth, Compassion and Tolerance.
§ 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:
Former Chinese Leader Jiang Zemin Faces Criminal Charges in Belgium
§ A lawsuit charging former Chinese leader Jiang Zemin has been filed in Belgium by practitioners of Falun Gong and their lawyer, Mr. Georges-Henri Beauthier. Jiang and two of his senior aides are charged with genocide, torture and crimes against humanity
§ After handing the suit to prosecutors, Mr. Beauthier and a number of plaintiffs held a press conference inside the Brussels Justice Palace.
§ Mr. Beauthier told the media that "Jiang is guilty... not only of trying to destroy Falun Gong [practitioners], but also to destroy their convictions. We think we have a very strong file," he said, "otherwise we would not proceed with the case."
§ Mr. Beauthier is an international human rights lawyer well known for his role in bringing charges against former Chilean dictator, Augusto Pinochet. He also brought the first successful case under Belgium's human rights law against two individuals for their roles in the Rwandan genocide of 1994.
§ Among the plaintiffs was 40-year-old Jane Dai. Her husband was tortured to death in China because he practiced Falun Gong. Ms. Dai told the press "I love [China] and I love the people there, but this killing must be stopped."
The Belgian lawsuit is the eleventh international lawsuit in eight countries to emerge in the past two years against high-ranking Chinese officials or government bodies for their roles in persecuting Falun Gong.
Rescue Charles Li Van Tour Reaches Denver, Colorado
§ Several groups of American Falun Gong practitioners are driving through the USA to raise awareness of the fact that an American practitioner from Menlo California, Dr. Charles Li, is illegally imprisoned in China and is being tortured by prison guards there.
§ One van left San Francisco on August 13th and recently reached Denver, Colorado.
§ On the way, they've collected signatures on a petition that will be presented to the US government to encourage more efforts to rescue Dr. Li.
Force-feeding claims another life in China
§ Authorities in China are using barbaric means to try to force people to give up their belief in Falun Gong and to say they will no longer lead their lives according to Truth, Compassion or Tolerance.
§ The Falun Dafa Information Center in New York recently advised that after being abducted multiple times and abused by local police for his practice of Falun Gong, Mr. Xuewen Zhang, a 56-year-old farmer from Heilongjiang Province was subjected to forced-feeding with boiling water. Emaciated and unable to stand on his own, he died in a Chinese prison on August 8, 2003.
§ Mr. Zhang's death was confirmed in a phone interview with the New York Falun Dafa Information Center by Wang Yufeng, chief of the Hulan County Detention Center. Chief Wang is known to be responsible for this crime.
§ Force-feeding is the cause of more than 10% of the 774 confirmed deaths of practitioners.
Yokohama Photo Exhibit
§ In mid-August, 2003, the people of Yokohama, Japan were given the opportunity to view a pictorial history of the "Peaceful Journey of Falun Dafa".
§ The exhibition included pictures of the first lectures that the founder of Falun Dafa, Mr. Li Hongzhi, gave in China. Thousands of practitioners would form the Chinese characters for Truth, Compassion and Tolerance at some of the large scale exercise exhibitions and gatherings in China.
§ There are photos of families studying and exercising together, and more recently, coverage of worldwide appeals and candlelight vigils to end the persecution in China.
§ For many people, these exhibitions have been an introduction and an encouragement to try the exercises and read the teachings that have brought health and happiness to more than one hundred million people in 60 countries.
§ This collection of photographs and others like it have been exhibited throughout Japan, Australia, Canada, Europe and the USA.
Thanks for watching the FGMtv weekly news review.
I'm Susan Mitchell. See you next week!