China issues book blasting banned Falun Gong sect

Reuters, September 12, 1999

BEIJING, Sept 12, 1999 (Reuters) - A Chinese publishing house has put out a book attacking the banned Falun Gong meditation sect and its exiled leader, Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday.

The book, titled "Li Hongzhi & His 'Falun Gong'-- Deceiving the Public and Ruining Lives," was written by Ji Shi and published in both Chinese and English by New Star Publishers, it said.

"This book is a comprehensive examination of the facts about this illegal organization, its sinister founder and its victims," the publisher was quoted a saying.

Xinhua said the book "reveals new facts" on Li's tax evasion, money laundering and visits to gambling clubs and brothels and presents cases in which people died or became mentally unstable as a result of practicing Falun Gong.

China banned the Falun Gong movement on July 22 and detained thousands of adherents, accusing the group of plotting to replace the government. Beijing was outraged at a series of protests by followers seeking official recognition of the sect.

Analysts expect key Falun Gong leaders, including organisers of a protest in April in which some 10,000 sect members encircled Beijing's Zhongnanhai leadership compound, will receive lengthy jail terms in trials likely to begin later this year.

The movement -- a mishmash of qigong breathing exercises, meditation, Buddhism and Taoism -- claims 100 million members, but the government says two million is a more accurate figure.

Its leader, Li, lives in exile in the United States, which has rejected Chinese demands to repatriate him. Interpol has also refused Chinese requests to help apprehend Li, saying they were politically or religiously motivated.

The U.S. State Department, in its first annual assessment on religious freedom worldwide, cited the crackdown on Falun Gong as an example of increasing religious intolerance in China.

China flatly rejected the U.S. criticism, saying the group was not a religion but a religious cult.

The new book said: "Numerous facts prove that Falun Gong is not a religion but a cult that brings harm to the society and an illegal organization that engages in law-breaking activities."

The People's Daily called in an editorial on Friday for "maintaining a high-level of vigilance" against Falun Gong because some organisers had gone underground since the crackdown.

"We cannot expect one storm to sweep away all the garbage," the Communist Party flagship said.

To see more documents/articles regarding this group/organization/subject click here.