Archive | April, 2009

Sun Moon Lake in quandary over Falun Gong protest

23 Apr

Following complaints from several tourists, the director of the Sun Moon Lake National Scenic Area Administration said yesterday it did not know how to deal with the Falun Gong protesters at the nation’s premier scenic spot.

 

Tseng Kuo-chi (曾国基), director of administration, told the Taipei Times in a telephone interview that the protests by Falun Gong members were directed at Chinese tourists, who normally visit Sun Moon Lake, Alishan, the National Palace Museum and other popular tourist attractions.

 

“You can’t just penalize them for petitioning for a certain cause, otherwise they will accuse Taiwan of suppressing their freedom of speech,” Tseng said.

 

Tseng said his administration had tried to regulate the behavior of Falun Gong members with the statutes governing the display of commercial advertisements in national scenic areas because they had tied banners and billboards to trees. As a result, the members now just hold the banners and billboards in their hands.

 

Tseng said the Ministry of Transportation and Communications and the Ministry of Justice have exchanged views on the matter and both were concerned that the nation’s image would be tarnished if the situation were mismanaged.

 

Nevertheless, Tseng said the administration would continue to communicate visitors’ concerns with the group’s representatives.

 

The Taipei Times contacted Tseng after it ran a letter on Monday from Canadian Paul Gallien, a high school teacher who visited Sun Moon Lake last week and was disturbed by a Falun Gong display he saw at one of the shoreline temples.

“Part of the display included very graphic images of dead bodies, including a pregnant woman with parts of her skin and flesh removed revealing an unborn child within the womb,” Gallien wrote.

 

While he had “sympathies for any group that experiences hardship,” he wrote, he did not “appreciate being randomly exposed to these types of images, even if I am mature enough to handle the experience.”

 

Traveling with his two-year-old daughter and her five-year-old cousin, Gallien said he doubted the two youngsters “have necessary faculties to avoid being traumatized by such photographs.”

 

text from: http://www.facts.org.cn/Reports/World/200904/t91032.htm

 

Radio Station’s lawsuit against Ministry junked

23 Apr

The state administrative court has rejected a lawsuit filed by a private radio station in Batam, Riau Islands Province, against the Communication Ministry for denying it a broadcasting license, due to a lack of evidence.

The lawsuit was lodged after the ministry refused Radio Era Baru a full broadcasting license for “technical reasons.”

Lawyers for the radio station allege the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Jakarta had asked the Indonesian government “to terminate the license” of Radio Era Baru. Station director Gatot Machali had previously stated that he practiced Falun Gong meditation exercises, a movement which has been banned in China.

Endar Sumarsono, a lawyer from the Legal Aid Foundation for the Press, said a letter purportedly from the Chinese Embassy, submitted as evidence to the court, was proof of its alleged involvement in the Communication Ministry’s decision not to grant the license.

Presiding Judge Wenceslaus, in delivering the verdict, said the letter fell under the “political domain,” and was therefore not within the court’s authority.

“How could the judge not see that such [alleged involvement] did not comply with the government’s [policy of] transparency and accountability?” Endar asked.

The station began broadcasting in 2005 under a locally issued provisional license, but the Communication Ministry refused to grant it a full broadcasting license in 2008.

“It is not the first time we have been involved in a lawsuit but we always abide by the court’s decisions,” said ministry spokesman Gatot Dewa Broto.

text from: http://www.facts.org.cn/Reports/World/200904/t90903.htm

What a cursed performance!

23 Apr

The Shen Yun Performing Arts production, which I have expected since last year, began as scheduled in Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium in Calgary. Before I entered the arena I found that the ticket I bought was actually for free, which made me completely not interested to watch this deceptive performance. The ticket I bought on the Internet was quite expensive – 105 dollars; Even if I bought it at a 70 percent discount, it still cost me 73.5 dollars. In order to watch the Shen Yun Performing which was claimed “Divine Performing Arts presents classical Chinese dance and music in gloriously colorful and exhilarating shows” in the ticket-reservation website, I bought the ticket. Around 7 p.m., I passed by the Jubilee Crescent Street near the auditorium and found that there were four or five people distributing tickets to the passers-by. I asked one of them to give me a ticket which was the same with my ticket, but they did not take a cent from me. Each of them had plenty of tickets. I hope the devil give the most malicious curse to Shen Yun Performance Company. I felt so terrible with the free ticket in my hand that I was completely not interested to watch this performance any more. text from: http://www.facts.org.cn/puop/200904/t90842.htm

Politicians tap dance around Falun Gong show

14 Apr

There was a pregnant pause on the other side of the phone when the question was asked.

We will get back to you said the aides.

They didn’t.

First it was the Mayor of Vancouver’s office. Then it was the Prime Minister’s office. Same thing happened at the Governor General’s office.

Nobody it seems wants to comment on the clandestine moves by the Chinese Government to discourage VIPs from supporting or attending the Divine Performing Arts (DPA) show, which has Vancouver dates this month.

Show organizers have insisted their performances have nothing to do with Falun Gong, and describe the stage production as a concert “showcasing the best of authentic traditional Chinese culture without communist culture.”

Read what you may through the lines, but some critics have described it as tacky entertainment by Falun Gong followers wrapped around anti-China propaganda. (See: “Crouching Dancer, Hidden Jargon” – Asian Pacific Post, March 12, 2009, http://www.asianpacificpost.com/editorial).

But never mind the show. It’s the diplomatic tap dance that has captured the imagination of some China watchers in Canada.

They say that some of our VIPS are in a sticky situation and have ruffled the feathers of Beijing by their unabashed support for the Divine Performing Arts show, which in Vancouver is being presented by the Falun Dafa Association of Vancouver.

China, which is already seething at Canada on a variety of fronts, says the DPA show is linked to the Falun Gong, a movement it describes as anti-science, anti-humanity and an anti-society evil cult.

The movement is banned in China because it uses religion as camouflage to brainwash and control practitioners, says Beijing.

The Divine Performing Arts show has already stirred up controversy in Denmark, New Zealand, Australia, Malaysia and even neighbouring Alberta where Chinese diplomatic officials wrote to local VIPs telling them their support of this Falun Gong-linked production will impact on relations with China.

It is unclear whether Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Governor General Michaëlle Jean, whose glowing messages about the show adorn the organizer’s website, were informed about the Falun Gong involvement.

It is also unclear whether Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson or B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell will now attend the show given its links.

Canadians, by and large, have difficulty with big governments, let alone foreign ones dictating what we should support or not support.

China’s pressure on VIPs not to attend the DPA show is distasteful.

At the same time, the Falun Gong movement should come clean on its connections to and its influence on the Divine Performing Arts show.

That way our VIPs will know what they are supporting and the audience will know what they are seeing.

text from: http://www.facts.org.cn/Reports/World/200904/t90603.htm

Awakening to reality after ‘sending forth righteous thoughts’ failed

14 Apr

My name is Gong Xiaonan and I work in a shipyard in Chibi City, Hubei Province. When I was a Falun Gong disciple, I was convinced of the power of “sending forth righteous thoughts” and became totally faithful to Falun Gong. Later on, I made myself a fool repeatedly in the course of “sending forth righteous thoughts.” Yet gradually I came to realize that Falun Gong was truly a deceptive cult.

One night I went to a remote village with a fellow practitioner to distribute leaflets. When we just walked into the village, a dog barked at us fiercely, and more dogs came out and were about to spring upon me. However, I was not afraid at all, since I believed the Master would protect me and a few dogs were definitely unable to hurt me. Therefore I squatted and began “sending forth righteous thoughts.” Strangely, the dogs did stop running after us. So we went on distributing leaflets, and I was even more convinced that “sending forth righteous thoughts” could really do wonders.

On the Eve of Spring Festival of 2005, my whole family was having a reunion dinner. I seized this opportunity to “send forth righteous thoughts” to my family members and advised my father to ensure his safety by quitting the Communist Party. As a result, my father drove me away from the dinner table with eating nothing at all. The whole family then broke up in discord. They said I must get some psychological problems, while I believed what I did was beneficial to my father.

One day in February last year, I wrote about a dozen of posters about Falun Gong with a brush pen and went out to paste them that afternoon. I planned to paste from our company all the way to the town. However, some one called the police when I just finished the third one; then a police car appeared with wailing sirens. Again, I was very calm: I was doing the right thing to save the world’s people and the Master would protect me. I even imagined if I “sent forth righteous thoughts,” the policemen would be struck dumb by my spell. Of course, I was arrested by two policemen. And on our way I kept “sending forth righteous thoughts” to drive away the “demon,” but to no avail.

When I mentioned the “dog incident” to government instructors later, they all laughed, explaining it was common for dogs to stop running after you if you bent down. I tried it again, only to find it was true! Suddenly, I realized Li Hongzhi was a big liar. With the help of my colleagues, relatives and friends, I first doubted and finally completely denied Li Hongzhi’s heresy. Now, when I look back at all these, I find at that time I was truly absurd and ridiculous!

text from:  http://www.facts.org.cn/Words/200904/t90647.htm

Falun Gong does not exist in Vietnam: spokesman

14 Apr

Falun Gong does not exist in Vietnam at the moment, Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Le Dung said a regular press briefing in Hanoi April 9.

The spokesman was answering the question “With regard to the recent BBC story on Falun Gong, does Vietnam have a policy against the practice? Has China ever put pressure on Vietnam to ban Falun Gong activities?”

Mr. Dung added, “Sports and activities to improve the people’s health are respected on the basis of compliance with Vietnamese laws.”

Source: Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs 
  text from: http://www.facts.org.cn/Reports/World/200904/t90722.htm