Friday, 31 August, 2001, 12:36 GMT 13:36 UK
Falun Gong is banned on mainland China
The banned Chinese spiritual movement Falun Gong says five more of its followers - all of them women - have died while in custody.
The movement's information centre, based in the United States, says it has witness reports that some were tortured before they died. [..]
The Chinese police have confirmed the deaths of two of the women[.].
Human rights groups say more than 200 Falun Gong followers have died in custody since the group was banned in 1999.
More than 50,000 have been arrested and sent to prisons, labour camps and mental hospitals, says Falun Gong. [ ]
[..]Falun Gong members in New York said the two were among five women who had been beaten to death or driven to suicide by police abuse. Chinese police refused to comment on the other cases.
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