Editor's note: Dr. Wang Lian was kidnapped in Zhu Hai City in Canton (Guangdong) Province on Sept. 12, 2006 by special agents of the Chinese regime's notorious Public Security Bureau (PSB). After intense brainwashing Dr. Wang was forced into spying for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) on the Hong Kong Epoch Times. He was given the mission to bring down the Hong Kong Epoch Times as soon as possible.
In the eyes of the CCP, The Epoch Times is an outspoken news agency that does not bow submissively to Chinese censorship and has significant influence on social and human rights issues in mainland China. The CCP sees it as a serious “thorn in the side” and has continuously harassed the normal operations of the Epoch Times in Hong Kong since its inception.
As a result of interference by CCP agents, The Epoch Times was suddenly in May 2005 unable to find a print shop in Hong Kong that would take its money. After the news agency established its own print shop the CCP hired thugs to break in and destroy valuable computer equipment programmed to print the newspaper. Now Dr. Wang reveals how the CCP has targeted individuals, seeking to undermine The Epoch Times from within.
After fleeing to Australia, Dr. Wang e-mailed the account below to the editors of the Hong Kong Epoch Times. Having experienced mental torments that left him wishing he were dead, Dr. Wang nonetheless wished to reveal the crimes of the CCP and to show the extent to which it will go to persecute Falun Gong and damage The Epoch Times. He believes that there are likely to be others like him and hopes that his frank account may encourage others with similar experiences to stand up and expose the truth about the vile deeds of the CCP. He adds that only by remaining true to one's principles may one be free of fear and truly happy.
Here is the first part of Dr. Wang's statement, which will appear in two installments.
Statement of Dr. Wang Lian
My name is Wang Lian, and I was born on April 10, 1974 in the Chinese city of Wuhan. After graduating in 1996 with my Bachelors degree in Computer Science at Wuhan University, I went to Hong Kong University for graduate study.
In 2000, under the tutelage of my supervisor, I began my PhD thesis, which I completed in June 2004.
From September 2004 to January 2007, I worked as an assistant professor at the Macau University of Science and Technology. My work consisted of lecturing to undergraduate and postgraduate Information Technology students and supervising two students who are studying for their PhD.
In September 1998, I started to practice Falun Gong in Hong Kong. Later in the same year, a friend and I established a Falun Gong exercise practice site at Hong Kong University and I went there regularly for morning exercise until September 2002, when I moved home.
From the time of July, 1999 when the CCP officially banned Falun Gong and started to persecute its practitioners, I always upheld my beliefs and actively participated in events to clarify the truth about Falun Gong in China. These included SOS rallies to rescue persecuted practitioners in China and other events to exhibit the peaceful nature of Falun Gong.
In September 2001, the Epoch Times newspaper in Hong Kong was established and I took on the role of one of the editors. Due to my teaching at the University in Macau, in September 2004 I quit my work as editor, although I still worked as a computer systems technical adviser until Feb. 5, 2007. During this time I participated in the massive rally opposing “Article 23,” a measure that would strip Hong Kong citizens of basic rights, and rallies that urge people to quit the CCP.
My student visa expired towards the end of 2002 but at the time it seemed that I would need at least another year before completing my studies. Therefore I applied to the Hong Kong and China PRC immigration department for an extension of my student visa. I quickly received a reply from the Hong Kong immigration department which accepted my visa extension application but in the mean time I received no reply from the central China PRC immigration department.
Later my mother asked a friend in Beijing to check out my application. This friend met with the official in charge of student visas, who said, “I can extend everyone's visa but Lian Wang's because he practices Falun Gong!” I had no choice but to leave Hong Kong in 2002 and returned to Wuhan.
As my spouse is a Hong Kong permanent resident, I was entitled to apply for a 3-month visa allowed for “visiting relatives” and I could apply for such a visa from my local immigration office in Wuhan rather than go through the central immigration office in Beijing. By repeatedly renewing my family-visit visa, I was finally able to complete my PhD in 2004.
According to the relevant law, after five years of marriage to a Hong Kong resident, I could become a Hong Kong permanent resident. Since I had married in July 2002 I would be entitled to get my Hong Kong permanent residence in July 2007. Ten months before this happened, disaster struck.
On Sept. 12, 2006, upon the request of my university faculty I went to Zhu Hai City in China to discuss a possible joint project with another university. As I was passing through customs at Gongbei I was unexpectedly detained. I was taken to a small room and two hours later ten people walked in, some were dressed in police uniforms whilst others were in casual dress.
After confirming my identity, they blindfolded me, took away my watch and mobile phone and took me by force to a van parked outside. I didn't know how long we traveled in the van, but finally I was brought into a room and pushed to the ground.
All the windows in the room were sealed with nails and the curtains were drawn. There was a camera inside the room. Three men were waiting behind an interrogation desk. A small stool was placed in front of the desk. It was apparently for me to sit on during the interrogation.
The three told me that they were from the Public Security Bureau in Zhuhai. I asked them why I was kidnapped here and they replied, “You should know your own problems.” I told them I didn't know and after a little while they said, “It is because you practice Falun Gong and, more to the point, because you work for The Epoch Times in Hong Kong.”
Following this I was kept under detention in this room. That is to say, everything I did, including eating, sleeping, going to the toilet and showering was done under the surveillance of at least two men. I asked them, “How long am I going to be under detention?” They said, “It could be a day or it could be six months. After six months, you could be here for another six months. It will take as long as required until we think it is appropriate to release you. Don't you forget that we are a very special government organization. We have the authority to do this.”
Then I said, “To practice Falun Gong is my personal freedom. Through its teachings of Truthfulness, Benevolence and Tolerance my health has greatly improved, and I have become a very peaceful person. My friends feel they can trust me and think of me as a good person. What is wrong with practicing Falun Gong?
“As to my work and association with Hong Kong Epoch Times, it was done under the authority and protection of the laws of the special administrative region of Hong Kong. Since I never did any work for The Epoch Times in mainland China, then what am I guilty of? Also I went back and visited my parents in mainland China in July of this year, so why are you kidnapping me now?”
In reply to this, they took out a thick folder of letter-size paper and said “We have been investigating you for several years now. Here is your case file. We are a very special government organization. We have the authority to arrest you at any time we want. We didn't arrest you earlier because it was not time yet. But we know very well each time you entered China and what you did in China in every trip.
“Practicing Falun Gong is not a matter of freedom of religion or personal belief. You have been cheated. It is the Chinese government's responsibility to tell you what you should believe in and what you should not believe in. You are a citizen of the People's Republic of China, so you must obey the Chinese government.”
“You could practice Falun Gong before the Chinese government started to suppress it. Now that the Chinese government has banned Falun Gong, you must obey the government. You must withdraw from Falun Gong at once. If you had withdrawn from Falun Gong earlier, we would not have arrested you.
“As for your work at the Epoch Times Hong Kong branch, you may think it does not violate the Hong Kong laws, but Hong Kong is part of Chinese territory. You must not attack the Chinese Communist Party. The Epoch Times Hong Kong branch is now an enemy organization. We will eradicate this organization sooner or later.”