United Kingdom: Scottish Practitioners Protest Hong Kong's Visa Denial to Shen Yun Staff

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On Sunday 24th January 2010, Scottish Falun Gong practitioners braved the cold and peacefully protested outside the Chinese Consulate in Edinburgh.

The protest was to condemn the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) for forcing the cancellation of seven sold-out Shen Yun Performing Arts shows in Hong Kong due to start on 27th January.

The visas of 6 key members of the Shen Yun Performing Arts were rejected at the last minute, in what Shen Yun organisers believe was a deliberate tactic to force the cancellation of the long-awaited shows.

It was to be the first performance in Hong Kong by the world-acclaimed performing arts group, whose depictions of traditional Chinese culture and the persecution of the spiritual practice Falun Gong anger the communist regime.

At the Chinese Consulate in Edinburgh Falun Gong practitioners held up a banner which read:

"Stop Chinese Communist Party Sabotage of Shen Yun Performing Art Shows, Hong Kong"

Many drivers read the banner as they passed by, even slowing down to read it. Some of them tooted their horn in agreement.

Pedestrians stopped, read the banner and were happy to receive flyers about the cancellation of the Hong Kong Shen Yun shows. Some people expressed their condemnation of the CCP, sympathy towards the Shen Yun performers and gave encouragement to Falun Gong practitioners: "Keep up the good work! I support the meditators" One lady wanted to support in a direct way and so was pleased to sign the petition on the UK government website condemning the persecution of Falun Gong.

A group of young students, including two Chinese girls from Singapore, stopped and spoke to a practitioner and were happy to receive a flyer.

Also, the Scotland on Sunday newspaper published an article about the protest.

Shen Yun Performing Arts is based in New York, with a mission “to revive the true, five-millennia-old artistic tradition of China that thrived before decades of suppression by the Chinese communist state.”

“The company seeks to breathe new life into traditional Chinese culture while providing audiences everywhere with an experience of sublime beauty,” says the company’s website.

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