Four teachers in Beijing sentenced to forced labour over 18th Party Congress 'security concerns'

09-02-2013 Work and school

( Falun Gong practitioner Mr Yan Dong, a lecturer at Beijing Industry University, was illegally arrested in class in front of his students on November 5th, 2012. He was sentenced to two years of forced labour. Mr Yan is the fourth teacher to have been sentenced to forced labour in Beijing under the pretext of “security” related to the 18th Party Congress.

The other three teachers, who also practise Falun Gong, are: Ms Zhuang Yanhong, also a lecturer at Beijing Industry University; Mr Qin Wei, a former art teacher at Eight-One Middle School; and Ms Gong Ruiping, a former elementary school teacher. Since August 2012, the Political and Legal Affairs Committee and the 6-10 Office have arrested and detained many Falun Gong practitioners in Beijing with the excuse of maintaining stability during the 18th Party Congress. The arrests of more than a dozen Falun Gong practitioners have been confirmed. Some practitioners are still missing and their whereabouts are unknown.

Ms Zhuang Yanhong

Ms Zhuang Yanhong, a lecturer at Beijing Industry University, was arrested in her office on October 18th, 2012. The police did not specify the reason of the arrest and detention. This is the seventh time that Ms Zhuang has been arrested.

Ms Zhuang was illegally sentenced to two and a half years of forced labour for “possessing Falun Gong literature”. The police told her family that there was a ten-day period for her to appeal the sentence. However, by the time the family was informed of the sentence, it was the last day to lodge an appeal. The police never gave any notice to either Ms Zhuang or her family. Ms Zhuang herself didn't have any idea of what was taking place.

The recent sentence is the second time that Ms Zhuang was sentenced to forced labour. The first time was before the 17th Party Congress, when she was sentenced to two years of forced labour.

Mr Qin Wei is a former art teacher at the Eight-One Middle School. On October 26th, 2012, two students were waiting for him to give an art lesson, but Mr Qin did not show up. His family could not locate him, either. One week after he went missing, the Haidian Police Station notified his wife that Mr Qin was in custody, but did not say why he had been arrested. This was Mr Qin's sixth arrest. He was sentenced to two and a half years of forced labour.


Mr Qin Wei

During the past 13 years of persecution, Mr Qin lost his job and has been arrested many times. He was detained twice because he appealed for justice for Falun Gong. At the end of June 2000, he was arrested again. A month later, he was sent to Tuanhe Forced Labour Camp in Beijing for a one-year term. He was beaten, shocked with an electric baton, and physically abused with other methods as well. He was deprived of sleep for 15 days. His term was then extended by six months because he refused to renounce Falun Gong. Mr Qin was sentenced to five years in prison in 2004 because he spoke to people about Falun Gong. In the male prison in Chadian, Beijing, he was forced to do slave labour for a long time.

Ms Gong Ruiping was a teacher at Chengguan Elementary School. On August 29th, 2012, officers from the Henanzai Police Station harassed her, claiming they needed to “check her residential registration” at her apartment in the Miyun District. After learning that Ms Gong practised Falun Gong, the police barged in, pushed her down, ransacked the apartment, then confiscated her Dafa books and materials exposing the persecution. They handcuffed her and pushed her into the back of the police van. With her feet hanging out of the van, they drove away. This is Ms Gong's fifth arrest. She was sentenced to two years and nine months of forced labour.

In 2001, Ms Gong was arrested and forced to undergo a brainwashing session in the Daxing Xin'an Forced Labour Camp, where she was beaten and tortured, resulting in her becoming mentally disordered. Ms Gong was arrested again in 2001 and sentenced to four years in prison. She was subjected to inhumane torture in the Beijing Women’s Prison. She was arrested again in 2008 and sentenced to two years of forced labour in Daxing Women's Forced Labour Camp. Afraid of being investigated by the international society, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) authorities transferred the detained Falun Gong practitioners to other cities before the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Ms Gong was transferred to the Wuhan Women's Forced Labour Camp in Hubei Province, where she was tortured for two years. Her stomach was injured and bled as a result of brutal forced feedings.

None of these four teachers has ever done anything illegal or harmful to society. On the contrary, they believe in Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and act accordingly. They have paid a high price for refusing to give up their belief.

Ms Gong Ruiping was an outstanding teacher at Chengguan Elementary School. She used to enjoy a happy family, a healthy body, and a stable job. However, after the persecution of Falun Gong began, Pinggu District Education Bureau officials fired her because she refused to renounce Falun Gong. Her husband also divorced her.

Ms Guang Yanhong graduated from the Department of Philosophy at Beijing University and was a graduate student at Renmin University of China. After graduation, she became a lecturer at Beijing Industry University. She works hard and takes good care of her elderly parents. She has been persecuted many times for her belief in Falun Gong. Her parents are worried about her after this last arrest.

Mr Qin Wei graduated from the Central Academy of Arts & Design. He is honest, kind, and generous and helps others. He was highly respected and loved by his students and colleagues. After he was fired by his school, he gave art lessons at home. He charged less than others. However, he was monitored and often harassed by the police.

Mr Yan Dong is honest and low-key. However, he was arrested to “ensure the security of” the 18th Party Congress. His wife and young child are now on their own. His Dafa books were seized as “evidence” of his “crimes”.

For the perceived success of the Party Congress, a person can be arrested even if he is innocent. According to CCP practice, there is no need to bother notifying the family or having a valid reason for the arrest. A person can be sentenced to forced labour without any legal procedures.

All four teachers have been transferred to Xin'an Forced Labour Camp in Beijing.

Parties involved in the persecution:

Xin'an Forced Labour Camp: +86-10-60278377

Beijing Forced Labour Bureau: +86-10-51785188



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