Amnesty International issued a call for urgent action, stating that a mother and daughter are at risk of torture in China for practicing Falun Gong. The two women, Wang Xiuqing and her 21-year-old daughter Qin Hailong, have been detained without trial at the Qiangjing Re-education Through Labor (RTL) camp in Shandong Province, China. It states, “They are at risk of torture or other ill-treatment, particularly due to the authorities’ anger at the recent petition in support for their case within China.”
The petition, which has received 15,000 signatures, “seeks justice for the death of Wang Xiuqing’s husband and Qin Hailong’s father, Qin Yueming, in Jiamusi prison in February 2011, and calls for their release from detention,” states Amnesty International. It states that Qin Yueming’s family had gone to the prison and found his body covered with bruises and with blood coming out of his nose. Witnesses alleged he died from being force-fed milk, while prison authorities wrote his death off as a heart attack.
After Wang Xiuqing and Qin Hailong were arrested, Qin Rongqian—daughter of Wang Xiuqing, and Qin Hailong’s sister—was tortured. Amnesty International states, “During a visit to the RTL camp, Qin Rongqian was denied access to her mother and sister, and was detained overnight several times and tortured, including being tied to an iron chair and having her limbs stretched, for continuing to press the case for her family.”
Lawyers also came from Beijing to help the family in their legal actions, but “the prison and local government authorities told them that as Falun Gong practitioners the family are ineligible to have legal counsel,” states Amnesty International.
Falun Gong, also called Falun Dafa, is a traditional Chinese spiritual practice with five simple meditation exercises, and teachings based on the principles of being honest, kind, and tolerant. The Chinese regime banned the practice in 1999 after a state poll found that 100 million people were practicing, which was greater than the number of members in the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Wang Xiuqing and Qin Hailong were assigned to re-education through labor by the CCP for seeking legal redress for the death of Qin Yueming—who had been detained for practicing Falun Gong, according to Amnesty International.
Yueming was jailed for nearly a decade before losing his life while in detention at the Jiamusi prison in northeastern China in 2011.
Amnesty International calls on individuals to send appeals to Chinese leader Hu Jintao and governor of Heilongjiang province Wang Xiankui and urge them to immediately release Wang and Qin, ensure their safety, and respond to the family’s demand for an investigation of the death of Qin Yueming.
It notes that Wang and Qin “are prisoners of conscience detained solely for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of thought, conscience and religion and freedom of expression.”
July 20, 2012, will mark the 13th year since the persecution against Falun Gong started in 1999. In China, hundreds of thousands Falun Gong practitioners are held in detention where they are subjected to torture, brainwashing, and forced labor at any given time, making them the largest group of prisoners of conscious in the world, according to the Falun Dafa Information Center.
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