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56-year-old woman murdered for her faith
Falun Dafa Information Center
NEW YORK (FDI) – After being detained and tortured at the Wanjia Labor Camp for practicing Falun Gong, 56-year-old Ms. Zhao Chunying wrote about her ordeal and posted it on the Internet. After local police discovered what Ms. Zhao had revealed, she was arrested on April 15, 2003 and taken to the Jixi City No. 2 Detention Center.
Less than a month later, Ms. Zhao was dead. Photographs taken by her family on May 10th indicate her death was horrifyingly brutal. Ms. Zhao’s face and body were covered with dark purple and blue bruises, there was a large open wound in the back of her head, her clothes were covered in blood and four of her ribs were fractured. (View photos) Please be advised that these photos contain graphic material.
According to family members, the police initially forbade any photos of Ms. Zhao’s corpse. After a struggle, however, family members were able to capture a few photographs.
Family members say the medical examiner proposed several possible scenarios for Ms. Zhao’s death, but refused to suggest any police brutality. When pressed by family members regarding the overwhelming evidence of torture, however, the doctor “went totally silent.”
Ms. Zhao’s murder and the doctor’s subsequent silence are two pieces in a large and complex cover-up in China, which spans from the police force to Communist Party officials to influence over foreign policy. The cover-up stems from a directive issued by former leader, Jiang Zemin, to officials of all ranks to toe the line when it comes to “eradicating” Falun Gong and silence any and all reports on the brutal methods used to do so. (special report)
Reliable sources in China say – and dozens of testimonies quoting Chinese police corroborate – that Jiang’s orders to cover up the persecution have gone so far as to specifically require that deaths from torture be “reported as suicides” and that the bodies must be cremated immediately.
In Ms. Zhao’s case, the persistence and struggle of her family allowed them to secure a few photographs as evidence, but many families never have such a chance. Dozens of families in China have reported the deaths of loved ones who practice Falun Gong and were cremated without their consent, and often before they could even identify the body.
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