Tag Archives: CCP

Hong Kong Dissident Jimmy Lai Slams Catholic Church for Deal with Chinese Communist Party

Carrie Sheffield
September 27, 2020

Hong Kong dissident Jimmy Lai, a devout Catholic, slammed leaders of the Vatican for renegotiating a renewed treaty deal with China, saying the Catholic Church has forfeited its moral authority by not doing more to protect religious believers in the communist nation. 

Lai, a media mogul and billionaire, was arrested last month under a harsh new national security law that mainland China imposed on Hong Kong as part of an intensifying crackdown on political autonomy and dissent on the island. After a public outcry by pro-democracy activists, Lai was released on bail. Earlier this month, a court in Hong Kong found him not guilty of criminal intimidation charges stemming from a separate 2017 case. 

“I’m very disappointed about this Pope,” Lai told Just the News in a video interview from his home in Hong Kong. “I’m very disappointed about what they did by extending the treaty, which is secret, nobody knows what’s happening. And during the last two years, what [Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader] Xi Jinping has done to religion is really horrible. And yet the Vatican is so pleased to extend the pact with them. I just don’t understand.” 

Lai’s criticism was echoed by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in an op-ed for the online magazine First Things earlier this month. 

Pompeo noted that Vatican diplomats have been meeting this month with their Chinese counterparts to negotiate the renewal of a two-year-old provisional agreement between the Holy See and China. The terms of that pact have never been publicly disclosed, Pompeo wrote, but the Church’s hope was that it would improve the condition of Catholics in China by reaching agreement with the Chinese regime on the appointment of bishops, the traditional stewards of the faith in local communities.

“Two years on, it’s clear that the Sino-Vatican agreement has not shielded Catholics from the Party’s depredations, to say nothing of the Party’s horrific treatment of Christians, Tibetan Buddhists, Falun Gong devotees, and other religious believers,” Pompeo wrote. “The State Department’s 2019 annual report on religious freedom provides an illustrative example in the story of Father Paul Zhang Guangjun, who was beaten and ‘disappeared’ for refusing to join the CCP-run Patriotic Catholic Association. Sadly, his experience is not unique. Communist authorities continue to shutter churches, spy on and harass the faithful, and insist that the Party is the ultimate authority in religious affairs.” 

Lai told Just the News he converted to Catholicism in 1997 because of his devout wife and other family members. At the time, he said, he “was a bit nervous,” because he was told his conversion could make him a target for arrest by CCP leaders.

Since then, as the communist leadership of China has become wealthier and more aggressive against Hong Kong, Lai has urged the Catholic Church to support non-violent resistance in the tradition of leaders like Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi and Pope John Paul II.

“The Vatican is a supreme authority of moral standard, and the greatest power to fight against the CCP is moral authority,” Lai said. “Look at Hong Kong. We don’t have anything. That’s why we are always against violence. All we have is non-violent and peaceful demonstration, which gets a lot of sympathy and resonance from the world just because peace and non-violence holds such a high moral standard.

Lai said the Vatican “has forsaken the underground Catholic believers by signing the treaty with China,” and urged Pope Francis to cancel the treaty and instead push for religious freedoms, not only for Catholics but for people of all faiths. 

“I don’t think that [the] Catholic Church can do anything if the Vatican already bows to CCP,” Lai said. “The Vatican should stand up as a moral standard and authority of the world, not just Catholic believers. We need the leadership of moral authority that [the] Vatican has forsaken. But we can each of our Catholic believers do our part. And that’s what we are doing here in Hong Kong.”

Videos: Police taking over, blocking off Chinese consulate in Houston

 LAURA WIDENER
July 24th, 2020

Police are taking over the Chinese consulate building in Houston, Texas after ordering China to shut it down earlier this week.

The consulate closed at 4:00 p.m. CST on Friday after the expiration of a 72-hour closure period. Video showed police surrounding the building and setting up a perimeter with barricades.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday that the consulate was ordered closed “because it was a hub of spying and intellectual property theft.”

Video shows that China’s flag and consulate emblem have been removed from the building.

Police asked bystanders to leave the area unless they lived in the vicinity.

Reporters on the ground also said that a locksmith was called into so law enforcement could gain access to the building.

Live video of the scene showed U.S. State Department agents and other identified agents guarding and entering the building.

Protesters outside the consulate building could be heard shouting slogans against the Chinese Communist Party.

China had threatened non-compliance with the U.S. order to close the consulate, but video from late Thursday night showed consulate workers loading up boxes into a semi-trailer and a U-Haul truck.

On-site reporters said the building has been emptied, and not even trash cans have been left behind.

TESTIMONIAL: ‘The Sky Was Falling’ Memories of Growing Up Under Religious Persecution in China

EVA FU 
July 20, 2020

Jiang Lianjiao has been an outlier since birth.

As the fourth child in her family, she was not supposed to be born under China’s one-child policy. She had to be hidden in her grandmother’s home from the time she was one month old. She called her parents “aunt and uncle” until age 7 in order to evade authorities’ suspicions. Her parents spent all their savings—a big sack of pennies and dimes—to bribe local officials so that she could live at home with them.

After she was reunited with her parents at age 7, she began practicing a spiritual discipline called Falun Gong with them. Each day, around 30 people would join Jiang and her family in their apartment building’s courtyard to practice the meditative exercises together. Jiang, her sister, and parents traveled via boat to her father’s hometown in nearby Wufeng Township to demonstrate the meditation to fellow villagers. She and her sister were always in the front.

jiang lianjiao sister
Falun Gong practitioner Jiang Lianjiao (R), pictured with her sister, in her hometown in Hubei Province, China, in this file photo. (Provided to The Epoch Times)

That blissful life came to an end overnight.

On July 20, 1999, Jiang, then 8 years old, found herself and her family targeted in a nationwide campaign to extinguish Falun Gong. Some practitioners who worked for the state were tipped off about plans to arrest and detain adherents. Despite this, dozens still showed up at Jiang’s courtyard for the exercises, undeterred. Police cars soon appeared, and officers brought everyone to the local police station. Her father was detained for a month.

The persecution was initiated by then-Communist Party leader Jiang Zemin (no relation), who considered Falun Gong’s enormous popularity a threat to the Party’s rule.

By the late 1990s, up to 100 million people in China were practicing Falun Gong, an ancient practice with moral teachings centered around the core principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance. Over the following two decades, Minghui.org, a clearinghouse dedicated to documenting the persecution, would identify more than 4,500 adherents who died under torture. Due to the authorities’ extensive efforts to censor information around the topic, the true death toll is likely much higher.

Epoch Times Photo

Home Turned Into a Prison

The abrupt turn of events made little sense to young Jiang and her family, nor to millions of other Falun Gong practitioners across the country, who were drawn to the practice for its healing benefits and calming effects but now faced arrests for their beliefs.

In 2000, Jiang’s family of six, along with about 100 other local practitioners, went to Beijing to appeal the Chinese Communist Party’s decision to suppress their faith. Almost as soon as they unfurled a banner reading “Falun Dafa Is Good” in Tiananmen Square, the police pinned her mother to the ground and kicked her as Jiang stood by, trembling in fear. They were dragged into police vans—her 16-year-old elder sister pulled in by her braids. A police officer waved a baton around, hitting Jiang on the head, causing her to faint.

Following this appeal, Jiang’s father was sentenced to three years in prison, while her mother got two years. Her 16-year-old sister was also detained for a month. Jiang, her older brother, and younger sister were left to fend for themselves at home. The eldest was just 12 at the time. Fearing they would run away, their building manager routinely locked them inside the house, only unbolting the door in the morning to escort the children to school.

shiyan jiang lianjiao hometown
Jiang Lianjiao’s hometown of Shiyan City in Hubei Province, China, in 2011. (Provided to The Epoch Times)

During that time, Jiang and her siblings often struggled to find enough food. To stave off hunger pangs, Jiang would fill herself with water or eat wild plants in the fields nearby.

The family was slowly reunited after Jiang’s older sister and mother were released from detention. In 2003, her mother and older sister saw Jiang’s father for the first time in three years. He was still imprisoned and due to be released in a month. The formerly healthy man looked bony and had to be carried out by six men. He had missing teeth. His legs were crushed from repeated torture sessions, which left him on crutches. He had forgotten how to speak due to prolonged isolation. The torture was meant to “transform” him—to coerce him into giving up his faith.

It was a pitiable sight and devastating for the family, who had relied on him as the breadwinner.

It felt like “the sky was falling,” Jiang said.

Jiang Liyu, Jiang’s younger sister, was arrested in 2017 for putting up stickers with messages supportive of the practice. She is still in detention.

Before the persecution, her father was a top surgeon at a local hospital in Shiyan City in central China’s Hubei Province, and her mother worked as an administrative officer. After they were released from detention, the hospital slashed their pay to 250 yuan (less than $36) per month—less than a quarter of their colleagues’ earnings. Her father was demoted to toilet cleaner, while her mother was made to launder the patients’ bedsheets by hand.

To save money, the family turned off fans in the summer despite sweltering heat; the children wove bamboo curtains they sold for 1.1 yuan ($0.16) each. They only bought the cheapest food possible: rice contaminated with mice feces, and vegetables that were about to spoil.

Epoch Times Photo

Web of Lies

Over the past 20 years, the regime has broadcast damaging propaganda through state-controlled outlets in an attempt to vilify the practice and its adherents. The most infamous was a staged self-immolation performance on the eve of the Lunar New Year in 2001. This incident helped swing Chinese popular opinion against the practice.

The web of lies permeated the very fabric of Chinese society.

Annita Bao
Annita Bao in a photo taken in 2017.
(Provided to The Epoch Times)

Annita Bao, a 30-year-old jewelry designer in New York and Falun Gong practitioner, fled China in 2016. She recalled that in her hometown of Wuhan, the capital of Hubei, all students at her elementary school were forced to sign their names on a huge banner that denounced the practice.

“It’s a show” to create the impression that the entire Wuhan population had turned their backs on Falun Gong practitioners, Bao said.

The neighborhood committee officers also frequently visited her home and inquired about whether she was still practicing, in the name of “caring about her academic performance.”

If the family refused to give up the practice, they warned, they would make a public announcement at Bao’s school to humiliate her. For years, Bao’s family kept the lights off in the living room so as not to alert the police that they were home.

Lü Zhongyang, currently an undergraduate at the University at Buffalo, said students at his elementary school in China were forced to watch and listen to defamatory videos and broadcasts. Similar propaganda was disseminated in school textbooks throughout the years.

The air was “depressing,” Lü said, “as if life may fall into pieces anytime.” His father, a news editor in Beijing, spent about four years in jail for writing on currency notes messages raising awareness about the persecution.

When Jiang’s parents were first detained, their hometown broadcaster, Shiyan Radio and Television Station, sought out Jiang and her siblings, saying that it wished to film some footage of them to show their parents that the siblings were doing all right.

Only after a neighbor came across the segment on television and told Jiang about it did the siblings realize they had been fooled: The videos were part of a propaganda program to describe how “obstinate” their parents were in practicing Falun Gong, and it claimed the state was taking care of the children, Jiang said.

“How can they do this—creating rumors by telling us lies?” Jiang said, calling the tactics “inhumane.” “Not only did they persecute [my parents], they also went out of their way to deceive the public. … It was extremely shameless.”

character formation wuhan
A character formation event involving 5,000 Falun Gong practitioners, forming the Chinese characters for “truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance,” the core principles of Falun Gong, in Wuhan, China, in 1998. Annita Bao attended the event when she was a young child.
(Minghui.org)

Bittersweet

If fear was a recurring theme for these practitioners as they grew up under the shadow of persecution, today they try hard not to let it define them.

Jiang, whose great-grandfather was driven to madness during the Cultural Revolution for his belief in Daoism, vowed that “the adversity won’t crush my spirit.” The series of persecutions her family has experienced over generations, she said, has allowed her to see the regime’s true face and has motivated her to tell more people about the ongoing persecution in China.

“The damage the Chinese Communist Party has inflicted is not just about one generation … nor one kind of people,” said Jiang, who has since escaped from China. Submitting to the regime’s scare tactics would only encourage the authorities to act more out of hand. Only when you know the true situation can one emerge stronger, she said.

annita bao design
A drawing by Annita Bao after her parents’ release in 2018, which she says conveys her hope for the family to live a more carefree life. (Provided to The Epoch Times)

Like Jiang, Bao took up the practice when she was seven. She said her past experience has given her a “sense of mission.”

In her approach to designing jewelry, that translates to a strive for perfection while not emphasizing material benefits, she said.

“The more the [Party] thinks we are weak, the more we need to prove them wrong,” she said, adding that she took challenges as opportunities to elevate her character. “He who laughs last laughs best.”

Follow Eva on Twitter: @EvaSailEast

Beijing’s Motivations Behind Military Aggression Against India Draw Scrutiny

BY FRANK FANG 
July 6, 2020

After a deadly clash between Indian and Chinese troops in the eastern Ladakh border region last month that left 20 Indian soldiers dead, Beijing’s motivation in escalating tensions with its southern neighbor has been drawing scrutiny.

China began pulling back troops from the region on July 6, and they were seen dismantling tents and structures at a site in the Galwan Valley, near where the latest clash took place, Indian government sources told Reuters.

There are several theories behind Beijing’s recent military aggression, according to Abhijit Singh, a former Indian naval officer and head of maritime policy at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi.

“The most compelling explanation is related to Chinese domestic politics,” he recently told The Epoch Times in an email. “With Beijing under pressure at home following its poor handling of the coronavirus crisis, many Indian analysts believe China is using the military standoff with India to divert attention away from its domestic failures.”

Beijing’s initial coverup of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly known as the novel coronavirus, has been well-documented. In late December of 2019, authorities silenced eight doctors, among them ophthalmologist Li Wenliang, after they posted on Chinese social media about a new form of pneumonia that was spreading in the city of Wuhan.

Taiwan warned the World Health Organization (WHO) about the virus’ risk of human-to-human transmission in an email on Dec. 31, 2019. Beijing didn’t openly acknowledge the virus was being transmitted between people until Jan. 20.

Most recently, the WHO changed its months-long narrative after updating its official timeline on the pandemic to now say that the Chinese regime didn’t report the virus outbreak late last year to the world body.

Singh added that Beijing may be motivated by economic reasons, in particular, a response to New Delhi’s decision to block Chinese foreign investment, out of fear over China’s predatory market moves amid the current pandemic.

In April, the Indian government enacted stricter rules on investments, requiring those from countries with which it shares a land border to obtain government approval in advance.

The Indian trade ministry said the decision was made in light of any “opportunistic” takeovers and acquisitions of Indian companies that were under financial distress due to the pandemic.

Beijing might also be reacting to India’s construction of an all-weather road leading up to Ladakh, Singh suggested, in order to protect its interests in the nearby China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The 225-kilometer road (about 140 miles) is of strategic importance to India. It connects Ladakh’s capital of Leh to the Karakoram Pass, which runs nearly parallel to the border, separating Ladakh from China’s Xinjiang region. India’s Daulat Beg Oldi airstrip, which overlooks the Karakoram Pass, is about 5 miles from the border and China’s Aksai Chin region.

The CPEC, which is a key part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), is a string of infrastructure projects running from Xinjiang’s Kashgar city to the Pakistani seaports, passing through Aksai Chin and neighboring Pakistan’s territory of Gilgit Baltistan area.

Beijing rolled out BRI in 2013, with the objective of increasing geopolitical influence by building up trade routes that link China, Southeast Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America.

Since the clash, Indian politicians, traders, and ordinary citizens have initiated campaigns to boycott Chinese products.

The boycott was driven by a sense in India that China has “crossed a red line” in the latest clash—thus fueling nationalistic sentiment against the Chinese regime, Singh said.

He believes that New Delhi and Beijing want to deescalate from the tensions. Any conflict that could extend from the border into an India–China naval war “won’t happen any time soon,” he said.

“If things did spiral out of control, however, India would have little option but to pivot towards the United States,” he said.

On July 1, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters that U.S. President Donald Trump was closely monitoring the situation in India and China.

“Both India and China have expressed a desire to deescalate, and we support a peaceful resolution of the current situation,” she said.

“He [Trump] said that China’s aggressive stance along the India–China border fits with the larger pattern of Chinese aggression in other parts of the world. And these actions only confirm the true nature of the Chinese Communist Party.”

Follow Frank on Twitter: @HwaiDer

Indians Turn Against Chinese Regime Amid CCP Virus Outbreak and Border Dispute

 VENUS UPADHAYAYA
June 23, 2020

The killing of 20 Indian soldiers by China’s PLA in Ladakh has intensified anti-China sentiment that initially flared with the surge of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic.

“They have made a permanent enemy out of India. It’ll take a minimum of two generations to have a friendly China response from us,” retired Brig. Rumel Dahiya, a veteran who had worked for the joint staff of the Indian forces, told The Epoch Times.

Dahiya said China can forget about any kind of support from India on the international forums. He particularly highlighted “human rights forums” and said India will change its import policy and will take steps to control Chinese investment into Indian startups, China’s purchase of Indian real estate, and the purchase of shares in the Indian stock market by the Chinese companies.

“Certain sectors will be closed for China on security grounds … Efforts will be to diversify imports and systematically reduce imports from China,” said Dahiya who earlier also served as the Deputy Director-General of The Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses, a government-funded think tank.

Epoch Times Photo
Indian activists along with Tibetans living in exile shout anti-Chinese slogans during an anti-China demonstration in Siliguri on June 20, 2020. (Dipendu Dutta/AFP/Getty Images

Unnerved by Chinese companies shopping in Indian stock markets, including China’s central bank, as the CCP virus started surging, the Indian government dropped FDI from its neighbors from its automatic approval list in April. Dahiya said neighbors “simply means China.”

A day after the Galwan incident—a border clash between Chinese and Indian military forces—India’s telecom ministry asked its state-run telecom company, BSNL, to rework its 4G network upgrading tender to exclude Chinese telecom companies. It advised private telecom companies to not procure equipment from Chinese firms.

Dahiya said India mostly imports tires from Thailand and China and these are licensed but things will now change. “Thai tires will be permitted but no license will be given to China,” he said explaining the immediate repercussions.

Boycott Chinese Products

There are many calls to boycott Chinese products in India but a popular one started during the standoff between India and China in the Ladakh region while the CCP virus was surging and it intensified after the death of the 20 soldiers.

It started when a well-known Indian education reformer, Sonam Wangchuk gave a call for a boycott with slogans like “Boycott China,” “Boycott Made in China,” and “Anywhere but China.”

Inspired by Wangchuk, who was the subject of the extremely popular Bollywood film Three Idiots, 16-year-old Chirag Bhansali started an online platform to provide Indians, particularly his school mates native alternatives to various Chinese apps and products.

Bhansali, a student who’s also a programmer took ten days to launch his platform on June 12, days before Gilwan happened.

“I wanted to support the nationalist sentiment,” he told The Epoch Times over the phone from Noida adding that Chinese apps have security issues and he wanted to support Wangchuk’s call.

Among many things, his platform called “Swadeshi Tech” lists Indian apps and Indian alternatives to Chinese laptops, televisions, mobile phones, audio devices, cameras, and air conditioners—it earned over 55,000 visitors in over 10 days and a salutation by Wangchuk.

Epoch Times Photo
Activists of the ruling party, BJP stand in line as they hold posters during an anti-China protest in Siliguri on June 17, 2020. India and China held top-level talks on June 17 to “cool down the situation,” Beijing said, after a violent border brawl that left at least 20 Indian soldiers dead. (Dipendu Dutta/AFP/Getty Images)

Prasanth A.K., a 56-year-old architect from the south Indian city of Calicut told The Epoch Times over the phone that there’s an intense anti-China sentiment in the business community across India but he is trying to find ways to promote local production as that’s the only way to sustain a boycott.

He believes a complete boycott of Chinese products can only happen if India achieves a “quality economy” across all sectors.

He said in India people have a change in their “value perception” and are slowly coming out of the lure of “cheap Chinese” products.

“How to be on our own foot is the main emotion pan India. The world was [earlier] reluctant to go against China. Now many nations are trying to be self-reliant,” said Prasanth who has been to China multiple times.

Epoch Times Photo
Anti-China protesters prepare to burn Chinese products while urging citizens to boycott Chinese goods during a demonstration in New Delhi on June 18, 2020. (Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Images)

India vs China’s Communist Regime

Dahiya said the Indian government is aware that what happened in the heights of Galwan can’t happen without the consent of its communist regime and the incident further exposes China’s communist regime to the Indian public.

“We also know that there’s a parallel command structure at each level. Professional guy and a party guy at all command levels” said Dahiya.

“CMC [Central Military Commission of the CCP] exercises great power. It’s the CMC that controls the army,” he explained.

Dahiya said the Indian administration knows “that party is dangerous … even in the 50s, 60s, and 70s we knew that the Chinese system was different, that the Chinese system wasn’t good.”

He said that concept of aligning with China was a “liberal imagination” but now it’ll be different.

“We [now] know that it is different from us and that it hardly is ever bothered about people. We also know each economic activity that takes place has a stake of these senior party leaders,” he said.

Follow Venus on Twitter: @venusupadhayaya

Falun Gong Adherents in Hong Kong Worry That Beijing’s Security Law Could Threaten Religious Freedom

 FRANK FANG
June 10th, 2020

Editors note: For more info on the persecution of Falun Gong/ Falun Dafa and anyone (alt media) who defends the practice by the Chinese Communist Party and its international affiliates, feel free to read The Epoch Times, Falun Gong, Edge of Wonder and the Sloppy Smear Campaign Against Them.

Hong Kong adherents of Falun Gong voiced concerns about their personal safety and basic rights upon China’s implementation of a national security law, during a recent closed-door online roundtable hosted by the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual practice with meditative exercises and moral teachings based on truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance. Since July 1999, when the Chinese regime launched a nationwide persecution, the practice has been banned and heavily suppressed in mainland China. Thousands have been detained in jails, brainwashing centers, and labor camps, according to the Falun Dafa Information Center.

However, it is freely practiced by millions in over 100 countries and regions around the world, including Hong Kong.

Though the territory returned to Chinese rule in 1997, Hong Kong still guarantees freedoms not enjoyed in the mainland, including freedom of belief.

However, with China’s rubber-stamp legislature recently approving national security legislation for Hong Kong that would penalize activities considered related to subversion, secession, foreign intervention, among others, human rights groups expressed concern that the proposal would allow Beijing to crack down on dissent.

As with many dissidents, activists, and religious minorities, Falun Gong adherents in mainland China have been sentenced on charges such as subversion of state power—-a catch-call charge the regime often uses to silence its critics.

During the roundtable held on June 9, Ingrid Wu, spokeswoman for the Hong Kong Association of Falun Dafa, expressed worries that Beijing’s persecution of Falun Gong practitioners would be extended into Hong Kong once the security law takes effect. The event took place just before the U.S. State Department released its annual religious freedom report.

“We are afraid that Falun Gong will be treated like those practitioners in the mainland,” Wu said in a phone interview, and “no longer be able to freely practice our faith in Hong Kong and could be arrested…at any time.” The suppression could also be extended to other religious groups in Hong Kong, she added.

Wu noted that since China’s persecution began, Beijing has “directly or indirectly” interfered with Falun Gong practitioners’ activities in Hong Kong.

For example, applications to hold events in governmental venues have been continually denied, while adherents have been repeatedly harassed by pro-Beijing organizations since 2013 when holding public events to raise awareness about China’s persecution.

Most recently, in September last year, a local adherent named Liao Qiulan was assaulted by people believed to be connected to the regime, as she was leaving a local police station to arrange details for an upcoming Falun Gong parade.

Wu told the roundtable that local adherents feared that their rights for peaceful assembly and protest would be further denied after the security law is put in place, because “the activities exposing the CCP [Chinese Communist Party] crimes can also be considered subversion of state power,” she recalled to The Epoch Times.

She expressed worries that local practitioners could face torture or forced organ harvesting, as mainland adherents do.

Since the 2000s, the Chinese regime has been harvesting organs from prisoners of conscience, including Falun Gong adherents, to supply its transplant industry. A London-based China Tribunal, in its March report, concluded that the stated-sanctioned practice was still happening, despite claims by the regime that it would stop sourcing organs from executed prisoners and rely exclusively on a new voluntary donation system in 2015.

Wu urged U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, Sam Brownback, to issue a statement “to address the threat to religious freedom in Hong Kong,” and called on the broader U.S. government to help secure Hongkongers’ rights to religious belief and assembly.

In response to Beijing’s proposal for Hong Kong, President Donald Trump said in late May that the United States would place sanctions on Hong Kong and Chinese officials who erode the city’s autonomy, and revoke the city’s special trading status under U.S. law.

Beijing has not formally responded to Trump’s announcement, but has said it is intent on implementing the law in Hong Kong.

Wu said that despite the impending threat, adherents in the city will continue to raise awareness about the regime’s persecution, and how its “ideology is a threat to humankind.”

“We will continue to tell more people about its hideous crimes, about what Falun Gong is, and why the Chinese regime chooses to persecute us,” she said. “Only when we persist, will authoritarianism [be exposed and] rejected by all people.”Follow Frank on Twitter: @HwaiDer

SOURCE: https://www.theepochtimes.com/falun-gong-adherents-in-hong-kong-worry-that-beijings-security-law-could-threaten-religious-freedom_3384692.html#

INFOGRAPHIC: How the Chinese Regime Colluded With WHO During the Pandemic

BY EPOCH TIMES STAFF
June 1st, 2020

Since the Chinese Communist Party virus (CCP virus, commonly known as novel coronavirus) first broke out in Wuhan, China, the World Health Organization (WHO) repeated the Chinese regime’s talking points. It initially parroted the Chinese regime’s official statements that there was little or no risk of human-to-human transmission of the virus. Mounting evidence, including from leaked internal documents, however, shows that the regime knew about the outbreak’s severity and hid it from the public. The virus has since spread to more than 200 countries and territories, with more than 4 million people infected and more than 300,000 deaths worldwide.

A growing number of countries are calling for an evaluation of the WHO’s pandemic response.

You can view the infographic here:
https://infogram.com/eet-who-desktop-1h8n6md90lv96xo

Editorial: Wherever Ties to the Chinese Communist Party Are Close, the CCP Virus Follows

Epoch Times Editorial Board
May 22, 2020

This year, the CCP virus (commonly known as the novel coronavirus) spread rapidly while the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) concealed the real situation in China, causing incalculable losses to the world.

So far, the CCP virus has spread to most countries in the world, with more than 5 million people infected and nearly 330,000 deaths attributed to the disease caused by the virus, COVID-19—assuming one takes at face value the official Chinese death toll of 4,642. In fact, many Chinese believe the real number is at least 10 times that.

Facing a huge loss of life and economic devastation, the governments and peoples of various countries urgently need to reflect on the relationship between the plague and the Communist Party, and what individuals and countries should do to avoid the epidemic and save themselves.

The Communist Party’s dark history is intertwined with war, famine, plague, and death. The Epoch Times editorial series “Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party” states that “the essence of communism is an evil specter” whose ultimate goal is to destroy mankind. The CCP is the biggest embodiment of this specter.

The CCP’s 70-year tyranny has killed 80 million Chinese people and destroyed traditional Chinese culture and morality. In the past 30 years, from the Tiananmen Square massacre of pro-democracy students in 1989, to the ongoing persecution of Falun Gong practitioners, which began in 1999, the suppression of and misrule over the Chinese people have brought huge culpability to the CCP, as well as those in the rest of the world who have enabled it or been complicit by turning a blind eye.

For nearly 40 years, the CCP has used globalization and economic incentives to bring other countries under the Communist Party’s influence. CCP infiltration beyond China’s borders runs deep in the political, economic, cultural, and educational spheres. Examples of PRC influence operations include the Confucius Institutes programs, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), and telecom giant Huawei. By trapping people and governments within its system of economic interests, the CCP leads them to accommodate its atheist ideology, tolerate its tyrannical rule, and betray the divine.

Misfortune is certain to befall those countries and regions that increased their engagement with the CCP and endorsed it. The path of the CCP virus as it has spread around the world goes through the countries, cities, organizations, and even individuals that are closely related to the CCP.

New York City the US Hot Spot

As of May 21, according to data from the Johns Hopkins University statistics website, there were 1,562,714 confirmed cases and 93,863 deaths in the United States. The number of confirmed deaths in New York state alone accounted for 30 percent of the national total.

Ever since President Richard Nixon’s visit to China in 1972, the United States has provided critical support to the CCP in various forms in the fields of politics, military affairs, diplomacy, economics, finance, education, and science and technology. Later, when the United States helped China to become a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), it gave the CCP access to the international community and caused huge amounts of Western wealth to be transferred to China, making it the “world’s factory.”

Only in the last few years has a general reevaluation of the U.S.–China relationship begun to take place, as American politicians, officials, and think tanks come to realize the role the United States has played in building up mainland China to the benefit of the Communist Party.

Without the help of the United States, and without the support of so many multinational companies, high-tech giants, and large financial groups, the CCP could not have quickly developed from a regime on the verge of economic collapse to an emerging hegemon capable of challenging the United States.

As the world’s No. 1 metropolis, New York City is the global center for the economy, finance, commerce, and media. It is also the location of the United Nations headquarters and has a great influence on global politics, education, and entertainment. With its special status and influence, the city of New York has played a major role in helping the CCP to achieve its agendas and advance its interests.

Wall Street, which represents America’s financial capital, has provided funding to the CCP for many years and has become the behind-the-curtain financier helping the Chinese communist regime prolong its life.

By infiltrating New York’s economy, finance, commerce, media, culture, education, and other fields, as well as the Chinese-American community, the CCP has channeled wealth and technology back to China. While exporting its ideology and abuse of human rights to the world, it has attempted to seize world leadership and challenge the United States.

These factors have made New York hard hit by the CCP virus.

Devastating Situation in Iran

The CCP considers Iran an intimate comrade-in-arms. While the official numbers of confirmed cases and deaths in Iran aren’t as high as those from some other countries, analysts believe Iran’s figures must be greatly underreported. Similar to the CCP, Iran’s authoritarian regime has likely concealed the true scale in an attempt to “maintain social order.”

Many high-ranking Iranian officials have been infected, including Iran’s first vice president and the deputy health minister, and many have died as a result.

The CCP has been supporting Iran for years, offering economic aid and weapons. It has even provided key nuclear weapons technology to Iran in order to threaten and constrain democratic countries.

For the BRI, which the CCP launched in 2013 to export communist hegemony, Iran is an important geographical and strategic hub from which the CCP can penetrate Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Countries in Europe

Out of nations with a higher number of cases (25,000 or more), aside from China and Iran, Spain has the highest relative number of cases (at least 497 per 100,000 people), with more than 233,000 cases and 27,940 deaths. Three close relatives of Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and the deputy prime minister have been infected.

The severe epidemic sent a strong warning to Spain that the government’s pro-communist policies have brought misfortune to the country.

Spain was the first EU country to make friendly gestures toward the CCP after the Tiananmen Square massacre on June 4, 1989.

Italy is the hardest-hit area in Europe. The root cause of its being hit hard by the CCP virus is due to the intimate relationship between the Italian government and the CCP.

Italy is a member of the G-7 and a developed and democratic country. Despite the opposition of its allies, it formed an alliance with the CCP in March 2019 to “strengthen a comprehensive strategic partnership.” Italy is also the first EU country to sign onto the BRI.

Italy has 74 sister-city relationships with communist China, including in the Lombardy region, which has the highest number of infections and deaths, and cities such as Milan, Venice, and Bergamo.

Major European countries such as the United Kingdom, France, and Germany are now also caught up in the CCP virus pandemic. People have suffered huge losses, and even the British prime minister was infected.

One thing these countries have in common is that they have been “close to” the CCP in recent years. For instance, the CCP wants to use Huawei’s 5G technology to infiltrate the world, but the United Kingdom, France, and Germany have ignored security warnings and given the company the green light.

The areas with the worst outbreaks in these countries—London in the UK, Oise in France, and North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany—have also forged friendly relations with the Chinese Communist Party.

When the pandemic hit, the experiences of European countries sounded the alarm to the world.

Severity in China’s Neighboring Countries Varies

Compared with European and American countries, the situations in the areas near mainland China more clearly illustrate the relationship between the epidemic and the CCP.

Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Taiwan are all close neighbors of mainland China. The numbers of people infected in Hong Kong and Taiwan are far lower than those in Japan and South Korea. The key difference is in these countries’ attitudes toward the CCP.

Currently, Japan has more than 16,000 confirmed infections, and South Korea has more than 11,000. In Hong Kong and Taiwan, which have closer trade and economic relations with mainland China, the number of confirmed cases is only 1,056 and 440, respectively. Among them, the early cases in Hong Kong were imported from the mainland, and later infected persons included riot police and pro-government personnel. The vast majority of cases in Taiwan were imported from abroad.

Since establishing diplomatic relations with the CCP regime in 1992, South Korea has gradually strengthened its economic and trade relations with the CCP. Since the current government came to power, it has moved closer to the CCP and has increased bilateral investment.

Although the relationship between the Japanese government and the CCP is not close, a large number of Japanese companies have invested in China, thereby relying on the CCP and transferring vital resources to it. Japan and the CCP have formed 256 ties of friendly provincial and municipal relations. Among them, Hokkaido, Tokyo, Aichi Prefecture, Kochi Prefecture, and other areas are experiencing serious outbreaks of the CCP virus.

Although Hong Kong and Taiwan have extremely close economic and trade relations with the mainland, the people of Hong Kong and Taiwan haven’t been blinded by their financial interests. In 2019, the people of Hong Kong launched large-scale protests against the CCP’s control and even risked their lives to stand up to it.

The brutal suppression of the Hong Kong protests lay bare the true face of the CCP and awakened the Taiwanese people. Voting this January for a pro-free world president showed the determination of the people of Taiwan to keep their distance from the CCP. The results of the presidential election saved Taiwan.

In Taiwan today, people aren’t quarantined at home and the economy hasn’t been suspended, yet the number of infections and deaths remains among the lowest in the world. The key to Taiwan’s anti-epidemic success lies in its distrust of the CCP and its refusal to blindly follow the World Health Organization (WHO), which is being controlled by the CCP.

The epidemic situation in Hong Kong and Taiwan reveals the secret of the success of prevention and self-help during the CCP virus pandemic: Only by rejecting the CCP can we resist the CCP virus.

Rejecting the CCP

Major plagues always come on suddenly and then, at a certain point, disappear without a trace. Historical records show that every plague had a clear target.

The bubonic plague at the end of the Ming Dynasty was a typical example. The transition from the Ming to the Qing dynasties, also known as the Manchu conquest of China, was a decadelong period of battles between the Ming army, the Qing army (established by the Manchu clan in Northeast China), and the Li Zicheng army, a rebel peasant force.

The bubonic plague in this period of time pointed at the Ming army only, leaving the Qing and Li Zicheng armies unaffected.

Plagues are not accidental. The CCP virus epidemic was triggered by the CCP’s crimes, and it spread globally due to the CCP’s concealment. The spread of the virus shows a clear pattern: It is selectively targeting the CCP and is aimed at eliminating the CCP and those who are pro-communist or who have close ties with the CCP.

All regions that are hard-hit by the virus outside China are those having intimate ties with the CCP, those who have supported the CCP in terms of trade, investment, or helping the CCP improve its international image. Likewise, individuals who have been the CCP’s supporters often find themselves vulnerable to the CCP virus.

In fact, this spreading pattern helps to point out a life-saving path for all nations and people all over the world. It is a path that directly connects to the spiritual side of all beings.

Conversely, supporting the CCP, endorsing the CCP, or establishing a close partnership with the CCP, will likely invite the virus.

Everyone longs for peace and health amid a global pandemic. Facing this sudden disaster, the limitations of modern technology and management methods become obvious. Everyone should keep in mind that the divine has been caring for humanity for thousands of years.

If one upholds one’s inner goodness, reflects on one’s actions, and rejects the CCP—the representative of the greatest evil, one will be protected by the divine.

The pandemic occurred because of the CCP, and the situation will change when people change their attitudes toward the CCP.

Editorial Board

April 26, 2020

Update: This editorial was updated on May 21, 2020.

SOURCE: https://www.theepochtimes.com/editorial-there-is-a-cure-for-the-chinese-communist-party-pneumonia-say-no-to-the-ccp_3327913.html

Tear Gas Fired as Hong Kong Protesters Return to Streets Against China’s ‘National Security’ Law

Editors Note: You here about China quite a lot these days, however, when politicians and talking heads mention “China” there is no clear distinction in a lot of peoples minds as to whether they are talking about the CCP (Chinese Communist Party), or the actual Chinese people. The CCP is actually a western invention and does not represent the will of the Chinese people but more reflects the desires of the international cartels in conjunction with the rogue intelligence community aka the “Cabal” or “Deep-state”. I know these have become cringey words in modern times but that is mostly by design, and these terms are more relevant now than ever, so is the distinction between the CCP and the Chinese people.

-Ryan DeLarme

BY FRANK FANG 
May 24, 2020

The air in Hong Kong filled again with tear gas on May 24 after months of relative quiet during the outset of the pandemic.

According to Hong Kong police, at least 180 protesters have been arrested as of Sunday 10 p.m.

Thousands of protesters returned to the streets despite the pandemic to voice their opposition to Beijing’s proposal for a “national security” law that was presented at the Chinese regime’s rubber-stamp legislature this week—bypassing the Hong Kong legislative council.

The move was met with international criticism as critics argued that the law would undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy and freedoms, which the Chinese regime promised to preserve after the city’s sovereignty was handed over from Britain to China in 1997.

Beijing announced the details of the law on Friday, which include the likely scenario that the regime’s security agencies will be granted jurisdiction over matters in Hong Kong. The law drew immediate condemnation from the United Statesthe European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and Taiwan.

Netizens on Hong Kong’s social media quickly called for a march on Hong Kong Island from Causeway Bay to Wan Chai beginning at 1 p.m. local time on Sunday.

Largest public Hong Kong protest gathering since the start of #COVID outbreak. #HKers defy 8-person-max group gathering rule to protest against China’s recent #NationalSecurityLaw plan, which effectively erases one country, two systems. pic.twitter.com/oGxRCKf06H

— The Epoch Times Hong Kong (@EpochTimesHK) May 24, 2020

Protesters did not obtain police approval, given the city’s social distancing rule, which prevents gatherings of more than eight people, is still in place until early June to prevent the spread of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly known as the novel coronavirus.

Before the march could start, a large number of police officers were seen gathering in Causeway Bay, including patrols at the local metro station where they stopped people for inspection.

Police fired the first shot of tear gas at around 1:30 p.m. local time outside of the local shopping mall Hysan Place in Causeway Bay in an effort to disperse protesters. The first arrest was made about 20 minutes later.

Hong Kong protests
A protester dressed in black is handcuffed by the police at Hennessy Road in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, on May 24, 2020. (Hong Kong branch of The Epoch Times)

Hong Kong police have arrested over 7,500 people since June last year—the start of the current anti-CCP and pro-democracy movement that sparked over the now fully-scrapped extradition bill.

At 2:30 p.m. local time, the Hong Kong government issued a statement saying that “rioters” had thrown items at police officers and blocked roads with miscellaneous objects. It added that the police were using “minimum necessary force, including tear gas” to disperse “rioters.”

Police have since fired multiple rounds of tear gas and pepper spray. Journalists covering the protests were also hit. The Hong Kong branch of The Epoch Times reported that reporters were pepper-sprayed by the police at the Canal Road Flyover, a bridge at Causeway Bay at around 2:45 p.m. local time.

Meanwhile, police armored and water-cannon vehicles were seen heading toward Causeway Bay.

Hong Kong
Police officers cordon off an area near the shopping center Windsor House in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, on May 24, 2020. (The Hong Kong branch of The Epoch Times)

The local police were already gearing up for a possible confrontation with protesters earlier in the day, with a police water-cannon vehicle parked outside of the Hong Kong Liaison Office in the morning, the Hong Kong branch of The Epoch Times reported.

At around 3:20 p.m. local time, a police water-vehicle fired water at protesters and journalists near Canal Road Flyover.

Morning Protests

Members of several groups, including Hong Kong’s pro-democracy parties the League of Social Democrat, Neo Democrats, Labour Party, and the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements in China, staged protests outside the Hong Kong Liaison Office—Beijing’s representative office in the city—on Sunday morning.

The groups held banners and placards voicing their opposition to the CCP’s national security law that they see as destroying the promises made between the British government and the Chinese regime under the Sino-British Joint Declaration.

Protesters repeated the longstanding “five demands” of prior demonstrations, including for universal suffrage and an independent inquiry into instances of police violence.

Hong Kong protests
Members of pro-democracy party Neo Democrats hold a protest outside of the Hong Kong Liaison Office in Hong Kong, on May 24, 2020. (Hong Kong Branch of The Epoch Times)

Lee Cheuk-yan, the alliance’s chairman, told local media that Beijing was “digging its own grave” by proposing the national security law.

Leung Kwok-hung, a former lawmaker and one of the founders of the League of Social Democrats, said the law will deprive Hongkongers’ freedom of speech.

Recently, over 200 parliamentarians and policymakers from 23 countries issued a joint statement, saying that China’s law is a “flagrant breach of the Sino-British Joint Declaration.”

Beijing Also Pushing National Anthem Law

The Sunday protest was originally planned in opposition to the Hong Kong government’s pushing ahead with a second reading of a controversial national anthem law, scheduled for May 27 in the city’s legislative council (LegCo).

If passed, the law stipulates that anyone in Hong Kong found guilty of actions such as “singing the [Chinese] national anthem in a distorted or disrespectful way” could face a fine up to HK$50,000 ($6,440) and three years in prison.

The push for a national anthem law in Hong Kong was mandated by Beijing in late 2017, when the standing committee of China’s rubber-stamp legislature, the National People Congress, adopted the decision to add the law to Annex III of Hong Kong’s Basic Law.

Once a Chinese national law is added to Annex III in Hong Kong’s mini constitution, the Hong Kong government can pass it through the local legislation of the Special Administrative Region (SAR), or the city’s chief executive can bypass the legislature by issuing a legal notice in the Government Gazette, paving the way for the law to be applied verbatim.

Opting to go through the legislature, LegCo passed the first reading of China’s national anthem law in January 2019, according to China’s state-run media.

Then in early May this year, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam announced that local lawmakers should prioritize passing the anthem law, defending the move as “proper” legislation during a weekly briefing.

The national anthem law has been criticized by rights groups.

In March 2019, British NGO Hong Kong Watch issued a report, saying that such a law would be “an appalling violation of freedom of expression.” It said that the law’s vague definition of “insult” was “not in line with the basic principles of the rule of law.”

The Hong Kong edition of The Epoch Times contributed to this report.Follow Frank on Twitter: @HwaiDer

SOURCE: https://www.theepochtimes.com/tear-gas-fired-as-hong-kong-protesters-return-to-streets-against-chinas-national-security-law_3362499.html