IRISH TIMES: Protest walk by Falun Gong practitioners

Facebook Logo LinkedIn Logo Twitter Logo Email Logo Pinterest Logo
Two Irish-based practitioners of Falun Gong, the spiritual movement outlawed in China, set off on a 160-mile walk between Dublin and Cork early yesterday to highlight the plight of an imprisoned colleague.

Ms Dai Dongxue, a Microsoft employee in Dublin, and Mr Jiang Guanyu, who is studying English in Drogheda, are seeking the release of Mr Zhao Ming, a postgraduate studentfrom Trinity College Dublin, who was arrested on a
trip to Beijing two years ago and has spent over 15 months in labour camps. [...]

The two walkers left from Government Buildings where they handed in a letter to the Taoiseach, Mr Ahern, urging him to raise Mr Zhao's case when the Chinese Premier, Mr Zhu Rongji, visits Ireland next month. [...]

Two other Dublin-based practitioners, Mr Zhang Libo and Mr Yuan Gishen, both students, also departed yesterday on a cycling trip between Dublin, Galway and Cork.

"We are planning to hand in letters to city and town councils along the way, explaining the situation in China for Falun Gong practitioners," said Ms Dai. "We will also be distributing material to local libraries and hopefully meet with the local media to try to raise as much publicity as possible."

Campaigners estimate that more than 10,000 practitioners have been sent to labour camps since Falun Gong was banned by the [Jiang Zemin's regime] in July 1999. More than 260 have allegedly died in custody.

Ms Dai said the Australian and Canadian governments had succeeded through protests in securing the release of practitioners who had been living in those countries. "I think if Ireland was to really make an effort, along with the EU, the release of Ming would be possible," she said.
She said she was hoping to complete the cross-Ireland trek in about a week with a first-day target of reaching Naas, Co Kildare, by last night. "It's going to be tough for me, although when I compare it to the suffering and torture of my colleagues in China it will be nothing," she said.

* * *

Facebook Logo LinkedIn Logo Twitter Logo Email Logo Pinterest Logo

You are welcome to print and circulate all articles published on Clearharmony and their content, but please quote the source.