Sect ban 'violates treaty pledge'

South China Morning Post, August 19, 1999

The crackdown on the Falun Gong spiritual movement calls into doubt Beijing's pledge to uphold international human rights treaties, Australia's deputy foreign secretary said yesterday.

Miles Kupa said Chinese moves to stamp out the meditation sect featured prominently in three days of bilateral human rights discussions in Beijing.

"The ban on Falun Gong raises serious questions about China's international commitments relating to freedom of assembly, freedom of association, freedom of expression," he said.

The ban, and the arrests of thousands of followers, contravened China's commitments to two international covenants Beijing had signed, he said.

The human rights discussions in Beijing are the third annual talks since 1997, when China began a dialogue with Australia after Canberra decided not to back a move in the United Nations condemning Beijing for human rights abuses.

Dissidents Wang Rongqing and Shan Chenfeng, linked to the outlawed China Democracy Party, have been detained by police in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, a Hong Kong-based human rights group reported.

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