One day before the arrival of President Hu Jintao of China in Canada, a Canadian Falun Gong practitioner initiated a lawsuit to sue the Chinese Minister of Commerce, Bo Xilai for crimes of torture. Bo Xilai originally planned to accompany President Hu on this trip.
Falun Gong spokesperson Zhou Limin said that, on September 7, the well-known Ottawa human rights lawyer Lawrence Greenspon submitted the petition to the Ontario Supreme Court. The civil lawsuit against Bo Xilai is based on the charges of torture and crimes against humanity for his involvement in the persecution of Falun Gong. The lawsuit also seeks compensation for damages that Bo has inflicted upon the plaintiff. On August 26, the Falun Dafa Association of Canada appealed to the Canadian government to deny entry to the Chinese Minister of Commerce, Bo Xilai.
Hu Jintao and his delegation arrived in Ottawa on the morning of September 8. Reporters did not see any signs of Bo Xilai at the Macdonald-Cartier International Airport nor during the Canadian government welcome activities in the afternoon. Reporters inquired via telephone with the Ottawa Chinese embassy about the whereabouts of Bo Xilai but did not receive any reply. Several more inquiry attempts by phone were intentionally cut off by consulate staff.
According to the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) official website Xinhua Net, Hu Jintao left Beijing on the morning of September 8 by plane for his visit to North America. Accompanying Hu were his wife Liu Yongqing, State Council member Tang Jiaxuan, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Li Zhaoxing, vice-minister of Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi, the vice-minister of commerce Ma Xiuhong, and various other delegates. However, the name of the Minister of Commerce, Bo Xilai, was not on the name list. His name had been replaced with the name of the vice-minster of Commerce, Ma Xiouhong.
Mr. Lawrence Greenspon, lawyer for the Falun Gong plaintiff, said, “We can only assume that the Chinese government has realized that Bo Xilai is just one of the numerous Chinese officials who should be condemned for their persecution of Falun Gong. The despicable crimes should at least make China feel embarrassed on the world stage.”
Falun Gong spokesman Zhou Limin indicated that no matter what the particular reasons are why Bo Xilai did not join the delegation, it has already proven that the people who persecute practitioners of Falun Gong should be punished accordingly. She said that if Bo Xilai were to enter Canada, he would face trial immediately in Canada.
Bo Xilai was the former governor of Liaoning Province. Besides the lawsuit against him in Canada for his brutal persecution of Falun Gong, he is being sued in at least seven other countries including England, Poland, Romania, Russia, the United States, Peru and Chile. In January 2004, he was added to the surveillance name list of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.