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Epoch Times Chief Technical Officer Beaten in His Own Home
Chinese communist regime thugs commit act of terror inside the U.S.
Stephen Gregory, Epoch Times Chicago Staff
At noon on February 8th, two armed men forced themselves into the home in Atlanta of Epoch Times Chief Technical Officer Mr. Yuan P. Li, beating him and stealing two of his laptops. After Mr. Li managed to free himself from the extension cord used to bind him, he was taken to an area hospital for treatment. His statement describing this attack is published below.
This crime, occurring in a very safe area in Atlanta and done without concern for the taking of valuables, breaks new ground in the Chinese Communist regime's campaign against The Epoch Times.
That campaign has previously taken the form of arresting Epoch Times staff inside mainland China, and, outside mainland China, systematically stealing newspapers, attempting to intimidate advertisers, applying pressure to deny Epoch Times staff the opportunity to cover events at which Chinese government officials appear, and threatening the family members inside mainland China of Epoch Times staff living outside China.
In addition, The Epoch Times in Malaysia has been blocked from publication due to the Chinese regime's interference, according to press watchdog groups. Also, Epoch Times offices in Sydney and Toronto have received in the mail suspicious envelopes that were suspected of containing toxic materials.
The incidents targeting The Epoch Times have intensified since the publication of the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party in November and December of 2004. That series of editorials has so far inspired 7.8 million Chinese to renounce all ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). CCP documents have asserted that trying to counter the move to withdraw from the Party is of the greatest importance.
Threats made to Epoch Times family members inside mainland China have been tied to attempts to learn who the authors of the Nine Commentaries are, and the ban in Malaysia and the incidents in Sydney and Toronto occurred after their publication.
But prior to today's incident no Epoch Times staffer outside China had been targeted for assault and robbery.
Asked about the motive for this attack, John Nania, the editor-in-chief of the English-language edition said, "The taking of Yuan's two laptops, while leaving behind other more valuable items, is key. The thugs who did this were looking for information about The Epoch Times. That was one motive. The other was the obvious attempt to terrorize Yuan and by extension the staff of The Epoch Times. But that is not going to happen. We are all concerned for Yuan, but we all share with him the determination to report honestly on events in mainland China, no matter what efforts are made to deter us."
Here is the text of a statement issued by Mr. Yuan Li in the afternoon following his release from the hospital:
My name is Yuan Li. I am forty-one years old and am an Epoch Times IT staff member. Today (Feb. 8) I was beaten up by thugs and my computers were taken away.
Around noon, someone rang the doorbell. I looked through the peephole and saw an Asian man in his 30s, and I opened the door. The man told me that he was there to deliver water. I said I did not order any water and asked if he made a mistake.
While I was talking, another man appeared from around the corner. The two forced themselves into the apartment. One of them pulled out a dagger, the other, a gun. And they ordered me not to move. I started crying for help and wanted to run away. They covered me with a bed quilt until I was almost suffocated. Then they took off the bed quilt and started beating me, especially in the temple area; they probably beat me with the gun handle, and I bled profusely. Finally they used the tape they brought with them to tape my mouth, my eyes and my ears; my arms were tied behind my back and my legs were also tied up. I couldn't move at all; I could neither see nor scream.
The first two men spoke Korean, which I don't understand. From what I could tell, another two men came in [later], one of them knows Mandarin, as he asked me in Chinese, "where is your safe?" He probably doesn't speak English. They searched upstairs and downstairs several times and left about half an hour later.
I slowly freed myself from the electric cord that tied my legs and searched for my way to the street. My neighbor saw me and called the police.
The police examined my apartment with me. I discovered that two of my file cabinets were pried open. Two of my laptop computers were taken away, but the more expensive items, such as cameras, were not. I was taken to the hospital. The wound on my face needed 15 stitches.
The area where I live is very safe. The police and the paramedics all said they never saw anything like this happening here before and were very surprised.
I guess this is because the Chinese communist regime wants to destroy my computers, or thinks that I am the author of "The Nine Commentaries," and has targeted me with such a plan. The brutality of the way they beat me and the time chosen to do so clearly show that this is an irrational warning and act of revenge.
But they have gotten it wrong: My computers are highly encrypted. Nor will I be scared by this kind of petty trick. I will continue to expose the evil of the Chinese communist regime as I always have, telling its crimes to the people of the world.
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