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Past and Present: The CCP's Repressive Efforts
Early summer quietly arrives in China. Normally, this would be a perfect season for travel, as the scorching heat and rains have not set in. This summer, though, the world is busy battling the CCP virus. Against all odds, the Chinese communist regime’s focus is somewhere else. Even in the midst of a potential second outbreak, Chinese security forces continue to prioritize its repressive effort on Falun Gong practitioners over saving lives. This time, with a new tool. On April 17, Licas News reported that police used measures like checking temperatures to trick people into opening their doors. In another instance, a healthy practitioner was tortured to the point of losing consciousness, and was later held in a quarantine facility for coronavirus patients. According to data collected by Minghui.org, in February alone, 282 practitioners were arrested, 15 sentenced for their faith. This is twice as many compared to February of last year. Between January and early April, the persecution claimed at least 17 lives. Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is an ancient spiritual discipline based on the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance. Throughout the 90s, millions of people practiced Falun Gong in China. At the time, even the Chinese state media praised the practice. On July 20, 1999, the Chinese Communist Party launched a smear crackdown on Falun Gong. Today, anyone could be picked off the street of China and unlawfully detained for their belief. Is the crackdown arbitrary, or is it part of a bigger scheme to eradicate spirituality? In the midst of the pandemic, what identity crisis is at stake for the Chinese people? In this episode, I sit down with Fiona Yang, a Falun Gong practitioner and independent documentarian, to discuss these questions.