NEW YORK – A Taiwanese businessman who practises Falun Gong and was abducted by Chinese security forces in June returned home safely this week after over 50 days in detention. Mr Chung Ting-Pang's release was an encouraging victory for human rights advocates. His family along with Taiwanese media, legislators, and citizens had rallied for weeks calling for his return. Amnesty International had issued an urgent action on his behalf.
Chung told a press conference in Taipei on August 13th that he was put under extreme psychological pressure. He renounced a statement he was forced to sign in custody and asserted that equipment he had provided Chinese Falun Gong practitioners from 2003 to 2006 was to help them broadcast uncensored information to fellow citizens.
“The so-called repentance and confession statements … that I’ve written or said in China were not done out of my own free will,” he said. "[In sending the equipment,] I had done something in order to let the people in China not to misunderstand and hate Falun Gong... People in the mainland have the right to know the truth."
He also thanked the Taiwanese people and government for securing his release “I do feel grateful for the government," he reportedly told journalists. "I do hope, however, that there can be some mechanism that really protects Taiwanese people's rights.”
State-run Chinese media also reported Chung's release, but tried to justify his detention by asserting he had been treated according to the law.
"It's a preposterous claim," says Falun Gong spokesman Erping Zhang. "The whole procedure was illegal from the start: A man was abducted from the airport, held practically incommunicado for almost two months, and denied legal representation. How can that be legal? The Communist Party is trying to backpedal and save face before the international community. They didn't expect such a strong reaction, especially from Taiwan."
For additional details on Chung's abduction and release see:
- Falun Dafa Information Centre, "Taiwanese Falun Gong Practitioner Abducted in China"
- Epoch Times, "Chinese regime repatriates arrested Taiwanese amid propaganda claims"
- Agence France Presse, "Taiwanese man says 'forced to show remorse' in China"
- China Post, "Released Falun Gong practitioner 'will never ever go back to mainland China"
- Epoch Times, "Taiwanese man detained in China"