Support Letters from UK Government Officials for April 25 Appeal Commemoration

Facebook Logo LinkedIn Logo Twitter Logo Email Logo Pinterest Logo

Government officials in the highest offices of the United Kingdom have expressed their support for efforts to end the ongoing persecution of Falun Dafa (also called Falun Gong) in China. The office of British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, the office of Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf, and several members of the British House of Lords and House of Commons sent letters to express their support for an April 20, 2024 event commemorating the 25th anniversary of the April 25 appeal, when 10,000 Falun Dafa practitioners in China peacefully petitioned their government for the right to practice their belief freely.

Letter from the Prime Minister’s Office


The office of British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak sent a letter stating, “I am writing on behalf of the Prime Minister to thank you for your letter of 30 March, inviting him to attend the rally organised by the UK Falun Dafa Association on 20 April.

“The Prime Minster appreciates the time you have taken to extend your invitation. The Government remains deeply concerned about the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners and others on the grounds of their religion or beliefs in China, and there is credible evidence to suggest that Falun Gong practitioners are subjected to serious mistreatment.

“The freedom to practice, change or share one’s faith or belief without discrimination or violent opposition is a human right that all people should enjoy. The Government believes that societies which aim to guarantee freedom of religion or belief are more stable, prosperous and more resilient against violent extremism.”

Letter from the Office of First Minister of Scotland


The office of First Minister Rt Hon Humza Yousaf MSP sent a letter, which stated, “The Scottish Government remains deeply concerned about the persecution of communities, whether Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Falun Gong practitioners or others, on the grounds of their religion or belief in China. We believe that everyone should be free to practice their religion according to their beliefs, and we work towards worldwide acceptance of the idea that the presence of other faiths does not threaten the identity of a religion, a state, or a culture.”

The letter continued, “The prohibition of some religious groups, and the legal restrictions and harassment aimed at others, undermine freedom of religious belief. We will consider carefully all evidence presented to us on alleged abuses and organ harvesting. If true, the practice of systematic, state-sponsored organ harvesting would constitute a serious violation of human rights.”

Other Supportive Statements from MPs & Lords


Patrick Grady, Member of Parliament for Glasgow

I am proud to stand in solidarity with those commemorating 25 years since the peaceful appeal of 10,000 Falun Gong practitioners to the Government of China, requesting an end to the beatings and arrests of people who practice Falun Gong. Everybody has the right to live in peace and security, and freedom of religion and belief is a fundamental human right. In too many parts of the world, these rights are still denied or unrealised. In China, ethnic and religious minorities, including practitioners of Falun Gong and Uyghur Muslims are still far too often subject to arbitrary arrest and detention, forced labour, disappearances and other inhumane treatment. Elected politicians around the world must all speak out against these abuses and call on our governments to make clear to the Government of China that such practices are not acceptable.

Ian Murray MP Labour Member of Parliament for Edinburgh South

I have been kept informed of the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China for the last few years by Rosemary and other dedicated activists. It is clear that the international community should come together and speak with one voice that any persecution of any groups in China, and indeed across the world, is unacceptable. We should also call on the International community to hold the Chinese Government to account for accusations of organs harvesting. We live in an uncertain world but what is clear is that we stand united against all forms of persecution, racism, and inequality. Thank you for continuing to campaign for justice."

Alan Whitehead MP Labour MP for Southampton

I remain deeply concerned about the persecution of people on the grounds of their religion or belief in China, be it Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang, Christians, Buddhists, or Falun Gong practitioners. The freedom to practice, change or share one’s faith or belief without discrimination or violent opposition is a human right that all people should enjoy. I am aware of the incredibly disturbing allegations that have been reported over several years about human organ harvesting in China. I also understand that minority and religious groups, including Falun Gong practitioners, may be being specifically targeted. I know that more recent reports have said that the practice continues, including the judgment of the China Tribunal initiated by the International Coalition to End Transplant Abuse in China (ETAC). Indeed, the China Tribunal concluded that forced organ harvesting has been committed for years throughout China on a significant scale, with Falun Gong practitioners and the Uighurs being the main victims. I believe the UK Government must ask further questions of Chinese authorities on this matter and ensure that it continues to review any new evidence that is presented. I believe the UK Government should also press the World Health Organization for a clear response to the China Tribunal’s findings and a proper independent assessment. I will continue to press the UK Government to send a clear message that we will not stand by and we will not tolerate such gross abuses of human rights. Thank you once again for contacting me about this important matter.

The Rt Hon Mark Pritchard MP Thank you for your message about the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China. The freedom to practice, change or share one's faith or belief without discrimination or violent opposition is a human right that all people should enjoy. The testimonies of their experiences are incredibly distressing and their treatment is one of many reasons why China is one of 32 human rights priority countries for the UK. The UK Government regularly raises human rights concerns, including concerns about the treatment of religious and ethnic minorities, with the Chinese authorities directly and at the OSCE, Council of Europe, and the UN Human Rights Council. Furthermore, the Foreign Secretary set out his concerns about human rights violations in China during his introductory call with China's Foreign Minister on 5 December 2023.

Stephen Flynn MP for Aberdeen South

Thanks for getting back in touch regarding the persecution of those practicing Falun Gong. my SNP colleagues and I support practitioners of the Falun Gong and their right to practice their faith without fear. Freedom of religion and freedom of expression are fundamental rights, long recognized as such by the international community. There must be no let-up in international efforts to safeguard freedom of religion and to prevent persecution of religious minorities everywhere. my SNP colleague, Patrick Grady MP, spoke in the International Human Rights Abuses debate in parliament earlier this year, and stressed the need for the UK Government to continue to work with international partners to ensure that the Chinese Government is held to account for the treatment of those who want to peacefully practice Falun Gong. Please rest assured that SNP MPs in Westminster will continue to regularly raise our concerns about human rights violations and suppression of freedom of religion and belief directly with Ministers in the Foreign Office so they can then take that up with the Chinese authorities.

Kerry McCarthy Labour MP for Bristol East

I'm a strong believer in religious freedoms and tolerance, and the scale of punishment and discrimination Falun Gong practitioners face and the number of them who have died - is abhorrent.

Bob Doris MSP for Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn constituency

The anniversary of the peaceful appeal made by Falun Gong practitioners to the Chinese Government on 25th April 1999. The continued repression and denial of basic civil liberties that have been perpetrated by the Chinese state has been well documented. These crimes are an ongoing moral and ethical scandal. I know that the international community has sought over the years to offer constructive engagement with the Chinese authorities on such matters, including seeking to apply some diplomatic pressure, however that engagement has not brought any admission of culpability from China, nor I am aware of any relenting of the treatment of Falun Gong practitioners. It is to the credit of the UK Falun Dafa Association, and indeed many other organisations worldwide, that they continue the important work of keeping this important and indeed concerning issue in the public consciousness. I hope the rally and 25th anniversary goes well.

Lord Roberts of Belgravia

Practitioners of Falun Gong, who are persecuted so monstrously by the Chinese Communist Party, should know that their treatment is not forgotten in the democracies of the West, and will not be forgiven.

Baroness Fookes, Member of the House of Lords

I support strongly freedom of worship for those who practice a non-violent faith or spiritual practice, such as Falun Gong and finds it incomprehensible that practitioners should pe persecuted by the Chinese authorities.

Baroness (Ruth) Lister of Burtersett

This is a message of support for the human rights of all those practising the peaceful practice of Falun Gong. As someone who practises mindfulness and Tai Chi I understand the importance of these practices.

* * *

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.