On 20th July 2009, as Falun Gong practitioners marked ten years of anti-persecution, a series of activities were held including a discussion session in Parliament entitled “China Tragedy” in the afternoon of the 15th of July, an anti-persecution parade and activities in the centre of London on the 18th of July, and a large scale gathering at Parliament Square themed “Dissolve the CCP, Stop the persecution” on the 20th of July.
Some British politicians and NGO representatives came to support. In their speeches and interviews, they called upon the UK government to act immediately, uphold religious liberty, and help stop the CCP’s brutal persecution of Falun Gong practitioners, especially the appalling atrocities of organ harvesting, as soon as possible. Their speeches represented the voice of justice from the British public.
Member of Parliament David Howarth hosted the discussion session “China Tragedy”. When interviewed, Rt. Hon. Mr. Howarth said, “The British government needs to openly raise the issue of Falun Gong, rather than human rights issues in general, with the Chinese regime. For those Britons who travel abroad for organ transplants, the government should take it seriously and adopt restricting measures.”
MP Teather: the British government should stand up to support Falun Gong
Member of Parliament Sarah Teather is from East Brent. In the afternoon of 15th October when attending the discussion session “China Tragedy”, she expressed concern especially over the allegations of the harvesting of organs from live Falun Gong practitioners, which she planned to raise with the Foreign Ministry.
She said, “Today I heard many disturbing testimonies, especially on organ harvesting, which I will raise to the Foreign Secretary. I also plan to raise (UK Falun Gong practitioner) Annie Yang’s (persecution) case to the Secretary, asking him to apply pressure on the Chinese regime to improve Falun Gong practitioners’ conditions (in China). We cannot tolerate anyone to be persecuted or tortured for his or her beliefs anywhere. If the British government truly believes in human rights, it must stand up to support Falun Gong practitioners and followers of other religions, be it in China or anywhere else in the world.”
Mr Gerard Batten is a Member of European Parliament for the UK Independence Party. In his speech at Parliament Square, he highly praised Falun Gong practitioners’ courage in resisting the persecution.
When interviewed, Rt Hon. Mr. Batten said, “I think it takes tremendous, unbelievable bravery for people to stand out and speak out in a country like China. We live in a free country and we all take our freedoms for granted. We don’t realise how precious they are so I think it’s a very small thing that I can come along and speak up in public for you.
“The governments are always in a difficult position because they have to maintain trade. What really disgusted me was when I was told today that the BBC did not want to come and cover this event because they did not want to jeopardise their operation in Beijing. But I hope they should think very carefully and not to side with enemies of the human race.”
Liberal Democrat MP Tom Brake was named shadow Home Secretary in 2008. On the 20th of July, he went to practitioners’ gathering to commemorate the 10th anniversary of anti-persecution and was interviewed. He wished to stand together with Falun Gong practitioners whose human rights are abused and stop the CCP’s brutal persecution.
The Rt Hon. Mr. Brake said he would carry out the duty of an MP and urge the British government to support Falun Gong practitioners’ basic human rights. He would also contact the CCP Ambassador in London himself to discuss the same.
He said, “Firstly I will ask the Foreign Secretary David Miliband to raise this issue with the Chinese regime. We must clarify the UK government’s stance, which is that people should enjoy freedom of religion without intervention or the threat of jail. Secondly, I will contact the Chinese Ambassador in London to discuss the same. I will say to the Ambassador, I believe the Chinese Constitution allows for freedom of belief. Therefore Falun Gong practitioners should enjoy freedom of practice without intervention.”
MP David Burrowes is the Shadow Minister for Justice. As a lawyer and a Member of Parliament, he has long supported democracy and religious freedom. On invitation from his constituent, he went to Parliament Square on the 20th of July to attend the practitioners’ gathering.
He said, “…The horrific accounts of abuse, of organ harvesting and persecution of Falun Gong practitioners … is why I’m here to stand alongside them and to recognise the abuse and also to say that really this ten years shouldn’t continue for another ten years, and in fact, it shouldn’t continue for another year, another month, another week, another day and it’s important that we do all we can to ensure that practitioners don’t have to come back here to be recognising what is a very grim anniversary.
“I support Falun Gong practitioners in continuing to call upon MPs, the British government, the European Parliament and all kind-hearted people to help stop the persecution.”
Liberal Democrat MP candidate Farmer: organ harvesting is immoral
In his speech, Liberal Democrat MP candidate Neville Farmer condemned the CCP’s persecution of Falun Gong as bottom-of-the-barrel human morality. He asked the CCP to immediately stop the worst human rights abuses since World War Two – organ harvesting from live Falun Gong practitioners. Meanwhile, he called upon the British government to show a little bit of courage and take actions so as not to aid the evil. He said the public should openly condemn the CCP’s persecution and expose the CCP’s crimes under broad daylight.
He said, “I came here today to protest the CCP’s human rights abuses. The CCP’s organ harvesting is very immoral!”
When interviewed, he stressed time and again that the UK government must not turn a blind eye on the CCP’s atrocities of organ harvesting. He urged western governments to ban organ transplant business and deter citizens from buying live organs from China to avoid killing more Falun Gong practitioners.
Businessman, China expert and writer Mr Ethan Gutmann also penned the book Losing the New China. Three years ago he started research on the persecution of Falun Gong, which he is currently writing a special volume about.
“When the atrocities of organ harvesting were first exposed in 2006, regrettably western media did not want to touch it. Obviously they did not want to think about it. Perhaps the leading politicians in the West thought what could we do about it? We don’t have any omnipotent solution to this. But at least we could stop our own citizens from the evil organ tours to China. We could impose an embargo on medical equipment export to China. We even could suspend diplomatic relationship before China provides full, detailed, and truthful data on organ donors. These we could do!”
Christian Solidarity Worldwide Public Affairs Officer Mr Matthew Jones said in his speech that he supported Falun Gong’s anti-persecution efforts. He said, “The CCP has a history of persecuting religious groups, such as these mainland Chinese who hold different beliefs, including Falun Gong practitioners and Christians who do not believe in Communism. I love China very much. I have been paying attention to the regime’s persecution of these groups.
“I believe the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners and other religious groups must end as soon as possible.”
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