France: Rally in Front of Paris Chinese Embassy During Visit by CCP Official

Following a rally in Lyon, France a few days prior, Falun Gong practitioners held another in front of the Chinese Embassy in Paris on March 27, 2014. These rallies coincided with the visit of Xi Jinping, head of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and practitioners called for bringing to justice the key perpetrators in the persecution of Falun Gong.

Falun Gong practitioners speak to Parisians in front of the Chinese Embassy on March 27, 2014

Mr. Alain Tang, president of Falun Dafa Association of France, spoke at the event, “During CCP chief Xi Jinping's visit to France, this rally in front of the Chinese Embassy bears great deal of significance. We call on Mr. Xi to bring to justice the main perpetrators—Jiang Zemin, Luo Gan, Zhou Yongkang, Zeng Qinghong, and Li Lanqing—and to stop the persecution of Falun Gong in China.”

“At least 3,745 deaths have been confirmed. Hundreds of thousand practitioners have been detained in prisons, mental hospitals, labor camps, and brainwashing centers,” he continued.

Dr. Harold King, a French representative from DAFOH (Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting), called for an immediate end to the forced organ harvesting from innocent people in China. According to Dr. King, almost all organs for transplants in China are from prisoners, many of whom are prisoners of conscience, primarily Falun Gong practitioners. Killing them for their organs violates basic medical ethics.

Mr. Tang vowed to continue efforts to expose the CCP's crimes to the world and bring an end to the persecution.

He pointed out at the rally, “The CCP exerts pressure on Western countries through economic and diplomatic means to avoid condemnation of its crimes against humanity.”

Indeed, the rally on March 27 almost didn't happen. Due to pressure from the CCP, the Paris Police Department declined the rally application on March 26, a day before the event.

The Falun Dafa Association in France made an urgent appeal to the Paris Administrative Court (Tribunal Administratif de Paris) , who subsequently held a hearing on the afternoon of March 26.

Judge Doumergue ruled that the ban issued by the Paris Police Department was illegal, and violated freedom of expression and assembly. She ordered that the police department withdraw the ban, and pay 1,500 Euros to the Falun Dafa Association of France.

The ruling, issued to the Falun Dafa Association and the Minister of Interior, and copied to the director of the Paris Police Department, confirmed Falun Gong practitioners' constitutional rights and the significance of holding a rally in front of the Chinese Embassy during Xi Jinping's visit to France.

The following excerpts appeared in the court ruling:

“The claimant association is justified to claim that [...] this refusal is a severe and clearly illegal violation of the freedom to protest and freedom of expression; Its implementation should therefore be suspended; The chief of police must be urged to let the protest happen as claimed with the conditions described above without a need to impose fines and injunctions;”

(Sixth conclusion):

“6. Considering that in the circumstances of the case, the State, the losing party in this instance, must be ordered to pay the cost of 1,500 euros to the Association of Falun Gong France (Falun Dafa France) required by article L.761-1 of the Code of Administrative Justice.”

Attorney Gabard, legal counsel for the Falun Dafa Association of France, welcomed the ruling. He said that the Paris police had downplayed the significance of the location and timing of the rally.

Mr. Gabard also clarified that the rally was not a protest against Mr. Xi, but against the policy of persecuting Falun Gong. It was not appropriate for the Paris police to position the rally as an event hostile toward Mr. Xi.

Attorney Gabard outside of the Paris Administrative Court after the hearing on March 26

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