The Chinese regime’s persecution of Falun Gong is “unacceptable and must end,” the State Department said in a statement as the brutal eradication campaign entered its 23rd year.
“23 years ago, the People’s Republic of China began its brutal persecution of the spiritual discipline of Falun Gong, its practitioners, advocates and human rights defenders,” said the Office of International Religious Freedom of the department. wrote on Twitter on July 21.
Falun Gong is a spiritual discipline that teaches the values of truthfulness, compassion and tolerance with a series of meditative exercises. The practice’s popularity skyrocketed in China during the 1990s, with an estimated 70–100 million adherents by the end of the decade.
But perceiving this as a threat to its hold on power, the Chinese Communist Party has launched an extensive campaign targeting the faith, subjecting adherents to harassment, torture, forced labor and other forms of abuse. Countless numbers have been killed for their organs in detention to supply the state-sanctioned organ transplant industry.
Rashad Hussain, the United States Goodwill Ambassador for International Religious Freedom, also took to Twitter to express his support for the millions of people who are victims of the ongoing persecution in communist China.
“I stand in solidarity with the Falun Gong community,” he said. wrote. “Thousands of people have been tortured, harassed, imprisoned and forced to renounce their beliefs. This unjust campaign must end.
I stand in solidarity with the Falun Gong community. Yesterday marked the 23rd year of persecution at the hands of the PRC authorities. Thousands of people have been tortured, harassed, imprisoned and forced to renounce their beliefs. This unjust campaign must stop. https://t.co/SRP8FDLICa
— Rashad Hussain, U.S. Goodwill Ambassador (@IRF_Ambassador) July 21, 2022
The relentless campaign of torture and death has led to growing condemnation of the regime around the world.
The Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China, an international cross-party group of lawmakers pushing for a tougher stance on Beijing on issues including trade and human rights, released a statement on July 20 to “remembering all those in China who have been denied freedom of religious belief.”
Many members of the faith group, lawmakers noted, have been “subjected to the most severe forms of torture and credible reports of widespread, state-sponsored forced organ harvesting.”
“Over the past two decades, Falun Gong practitioners have faced more persecution from the CCP than any other group,” Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) wrote in a letter to the Falun Dafa Association of Washington, listing the abuses of imprisonment and torture. to the killing of organs “for a horrible international trade”.
“These human rights abuses paint a grim picture of the brutal way the CCP rules,” he added.
Before a Falun Gong rally in Washington on Thursday, Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.) praised adherents for their perseverance.
“Your fight for religious freedom has been nothing but an inspiration to those around the world who respect freedom of religion,” he wrote in a letter. “From underground printing presses and innovative and robust Internet freedom software to media outlets that disseminate uncensored information, you have given hope and encouragement not only to Falun Gong practitioners who are still persecuted, but also to other oppressed religious groups. in the world.
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) also applauded adherents for their perseverance in the face of the regime’s “intensive, comprehensive and ruthless campaign” on faith.
“Reports of arbitrary detention, discrimination, torture and even organ harvesting are extremely disturbing, and the CCP must be held accountable for these actions,” he said in a letter.
“Horrible” reports of atrocities targeting Falun Gong practitioners in China are a reminder to the outside world to take action, according to Rep. Stephen Lynch (R-Wash.).
“As long as the Chinese government engages in these gross violations of basic human rights, we cannot and will not sit idly by,” he wrote in a letter Thursday.