When the Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visited Ireland in May, Falun Gong practitioners staged a peaceful appeal by practising exercises, and appealed for bringing Jiang Zemin, who is the driving force behind the persecution of Falun Gong, to justice. Meanwhile, practitioners called for the release of two practitioners from Liaoning province in China, Liu Feng and Yang Fang, and for their safe return to Ireland to continue their studies.
An article in The Irish Times highlighted the cases of the two Falun Gong practitioners and stated that the representatives of the Irish Students Association and the Chinese Ambassador to Ireland, Sha Hailin, held a conference. The cases of Liu Feng, 24, and Yang Fang, 33, who studied in a Dun Laoghaire College in 1999, were brought up during the session.
The report cited the Irish Students Association Chairman, Will Priestley as saying that he knows that Liu Feng had been imprisoned in a detention centre for two years. He also said, “We worry that both of them are under improper house arrest and are prohibited from returning to Ireland to study.”
The report noted that Falun Gong practitioner Zhao Ming, while a student of Trinity College in Dublin, had been detained in a re-education camp for two years when he returned to China during Christmas 1999. This news was such a high-profile incident in Ireland that Zhao Ming was released.
According to Irish Falun Gong practitioner Gerald, many Irish politicians expressed their concern about the detention of Liu Feng and Yang Fang. A spokesman for the Irish Labour Party, Brian O’Shea, said on May the 6th, "I have strongly demanded the foreign secretary, Brian Cowen, to pay attention to the persecution against Falun Gong practitioners in China, especially the cases of Liu Feng and Yang Fang who were students in Dublin."
Gerald indicated that an Irish County Councillor, Peter Savage, demanded on April the 20th that the foreign secretary, Brian Cowen, exert his influence and power to rescue Liu Feng and Yang Fang.
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