Spain: Supreme Court Rules to Accept Falun Gong Lawsuit

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Spain's Supreme Court held a hearing on June 6th 2006, and ruled that it could accept a lawsuit brought by several victims accusing the top Chinese officials of committing genocide against Falun Gong in the past seven years.

The Advertiser (Australia) reported on June 7th that Spain's Supreme Court said on June 6th after holding a hearing that a lawsuit brought by Falun Gong accusing a top Chinese official of genocide could go ahead. That means Falun Gong can now appeal an earlier rejection of the lawsuit by the Audencia Nacional, Spain's highest criminal court.

The article states that Falun Gong brought the suit in September 2004 against Jia Qinglin, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), just before he visited Spain. Falun Gong practitioners accused Jia of committing genocide when he was secretary of the Chinese Communist Party's local committee in Beijing between 1999 and 2002.

The article states that The Audencia Nacional rejected the lawsuit on the grounds that it had not been established that Jia was in Spain. However, the Supreme Court ruled that the case was indeed within the jurisdiction of the country's courts. This follows its acceptance in October 2005 of the principle of "universal competence", which means that Spanish courts are competent to hear cases of genocide and crimes against humanity wherever they occur and whatever the nationality of the defendant.

The ruling came the day after another Spanish court began hearing a case against seven Chinese leaders accused of genocide, torture and crimes against humanity in Tibet during the 1980s.

The article also states that Spain became the first European Union country to sign an extradition treaty with Beijing in November 2005.

Clear Harmony reported on October 15th 2003, that practitioners filed a criminal lawsuit in Spain's La Audiencia Nacional against former CCP General Secretary Jiang Zemin, accusing him of committing genocide and torture in the persecution of Falun Gong.

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