I am sorry I am unable to attend today's events, but it gives me great pleasure to send my support and best wishes to everyone present. I would like to pay tribute to the hard work of campaigners who have dedicated themselves to fighting the ruthless persecution of Falun Gong practitioners.
This may not seem an obvious cause for me to raise as the Greater London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden. The preoccupation of our leaders will always be primarily with the state of their own nation, and with their own constituencies, but domestic concerns ought never to eclipse the opportunity to make the case for decent human rights for all.
No-one in authority should duck the issue of the systematic and coordinated abuse of human rights that is taking place in China today by the Communist dictatorship.
It is imperative for the British Government to address this issue in all their dealings with their Chinese counterparts. I for my part will continue to draw attention to the torture, imprisonment and intimidation of Falun Gong practitioners, who stand so simply for Truth, Compassion and Forbearance. I will do this at every opportunity I get and I would like to use this occasion to advise all my colleagues at every level of government to do the same.
Once again, my best wishes to you all.
Councillor Brian Coleman
GLA Member for Barnet and Camden
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