Gao Zhisheng has been praised as “the conscience of Chinese lawyers” and “a great hero.” China’s Ministry of Justice rated him one of China’s top ten lawyers in 2001. He has earned a reputation for courage in standing up against human rights abuses and is one of only a handful of lawyers in China who will defend those persecuted for their religious or spiritual beliefs. One of his recent cases includes the ongoing legal fight for the release of Cai Zhuohua, an underground Christian pastor sentenced to a seven-year jail term. On Oct. 18 Gao wrote a letter to the head of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao calling for an end to the persecution of Falun Gong. In response, the government closed his law office and took away his law license. Gao is now in hiding in Northern China, where he wrote the following statement withdrawing from the CCP.
After working around the clock for more than ten days, I can now take a break. I have finished this course of investigation into the truth about the brutal persecution, ordered by the Chinese authorities, that those who believe in freedom have suffered the past few years.
Because my wife and child remain at home alone, and because they are being watched 24 hours a day by the most notorious and most immoral police–police who know no bad things that they dare not do–every second of my spare time has been filled with agonizing worry. May God keep them safe!
Over a dozen days’ close touch with Falun Gong believers was a shocking experience to my soul. Together with Professor Jiao Guobiao. I stayed 24 hours a day with these Falun Gong adherents, a group that suffering inhumane persecution has won eternal life.
Professor Jiao said, “I feel like I am dealing with ghosts because everyone of them has died several times.” I said, “Well, we are associated with a group of saints. Their indomitable spirit, noble character, and ability to forgive the violent perpetrator are not only China’s hope, but also the reason why we should continue to persevere!”
During these past 15 days I have come to know of indescribable violence done to our kind people. Ms. Wang Yuhuan, a peaceful old woman, was tortured for six years in body and spirit hundreds of times by police and CCP officials with all the horrible methods. Each time, over twenty police kept torturing her for over 24 hours until they all got exhausted and desperately mad. The entire set of major torture instruments was used to torture the old lady Wang three times in only 17 days. She was once put on the Tiger Bench for three days and two nights.
Eventually these more than a dozen days ended! And I had lost my hope for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) completely. This CCP has employed the most barbarous and most immoral and illegal means to torture our mothers, our wives, our children, and our brothers and sisters. It has made this kind of torture part of the Party member’s job and raised the political standing of torture. It continuously persecutes and torments the conscience, character, and kindness of us, the people!
From now on, Gao Zhisheng, a Party “member” who hasn’t paid the membership fee for a long time and has been absent from the “Party activities” for many years, declares that he quits the cruel, untrustworthy, inhumane, and evil party.
This is the proudest day of my life.