Falun Gong accuse Chinese leaders of genocide
3 December 2004, AMSTERDAM — The Falun Gung spiritual movement is seeking to have three senior Chinese officials, including former president Jiang Zemin, prosecuted in the Netherlands for genocide and torture.
3 December 2004
AMSTERDAM — The Falun Gung spiritual movement is seeking to have three senior Chinese officials, including former president Jiang Zemin, prosecuted in the Netherlands for genocide and torture.
Lawyer Liesbeth Zegveld said at a press conference on Friday that the "symbolic" case was timed to coincide with the upcoming EU-China summit in The Hague.
Zegveld said two of the victims of the persecution of Falun Gung in China were Dutch citizens and this justified launching a case in the Netherlands on Wednesday.
"There are now [similar] law suits in 44 countries against these eminent figures, making it difficult for them to move around freely," Zegveld said.
The Chinese officials named in the complaint are Jiang, Trade Minister Bo Xilai and Li Lanqing, a former member of the secretariat of the Communist Party. Bo was governor of Liaoning province where many of the Falun Gong followers were prosecuted, the lawyer claimed.
The public prosecutor's office in Rotterdam confirmed it had received the complaint. Justice officials will study it to decide what action, if any, to take against the three.
Falun Gung was outlawed as an "evil cult" in China by Jiang in 1999 and the group claims 1,600 of its members were tortured or beaten to death since then.
The organisation is said to have 100 million followers in China and thousands more around the world. Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a meditation and exercise practice.
It is not really clear why the Chinese authorities decided to crackdown on the spiritual group. Falun Gong adherents claim Jiang was afraid its popularity threatened the Communist Party's hold over the country.
[Copyright Novum Nieuws 2004]
Subject: Dutch news