Slovakia: Petition against Persecution of Falun Gong in China

A series of petition rallies to raise awareness about human rights abuses in China took place in eastern Slovakia at the end of October 2008. Practitioners of Falun Gong visited cities of Presov, Kosice, Spisska Nova Ves and Michalovce, in order for the people there to learn about the persecution of Falun Gong in China.

The series of rallies began on Wednesday 22nd October in Presov. Passers-by stopped at the stands with posters depicting scenes of persecution. Many couldn’t believe something like this is able to happen today. Young people who were coming home from school also stopped by and it happened often that there were two rows of people at the petition table (there were two petitions).

Children were also asking about the persecution and showed interest in the exercises. In one day more then 300 people signed the petition. The rallies continued in Kosice, where several practitioners demonstrated the exercises of Falun Gong. In spite of rather cold weather many people stopped at the petition table, asked about exercises and signed the petition. “How could I help you more”? asked one young lady, who signed the petition. She was told that the best approach considered by Falun Gong practitioners is the way of peacefully informing the public about the persecution, which creates pressure on the Chinese regime to stop the persecution. If she could help us with this, we would be very thankful. She promised to help. On Friday in Spisska Nova Ves, mostly older people who remembered a lot from the time of communism in Slovakia, stopped at the petition table. One lady, who came to sign the petition, told us, “I went around in a car and saw something happening here, so I came to take a look. I am glad I stopped by, at least I could sign your the petition. My husband fought his whole life against communism, so I happen to know something about it.” A few people showed interest in learning the exercises.

The practitioners were pleasantly surprised by Saturday morning in Michalovce. Although at the beginning the pedestrian zone looked empty, gradually there started to appear more and more people. “We saw the news about your rally on local television,” said passers- by. A man, who showed interest in the exercises, left with both main books of Falun Gong, which he wanted to study. After a short explanation about the purpose of our rally most of the passers-by signed our petition. More than 1100 people signed the petition in those four days.

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