The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed H.Res.343 on June 13, 2016. The resolution expressed concern regarding persistent and credible reports of systematic, state-sanctioned organ harvesting from non-consenting prisoners of conscience in the People's Republic of China, including from large numbers of Falun Gong practitioners and members of other religious and ethnic minority groups.
US Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) (Photo / Courtesy of The Epoch Times)
Republican Representative, Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen from Florida, who introduced the resolution, stated that by passing this resolution, “we can send a message to the Chinese regime that we condemn this continued practice of persecution of Falun Gong practitioners, and its sickening and unethical practice must stop, especially harvesting organs from nonconsenting individuals. We cannot allow these crimes to continue.”
The resolution points out:
Whereas Huang Jiefu, director of the China Organ Donation Committee, announced in December 2014 that China would end the practice of organ harvesting from executed prisoners by January 1, 2015, did not directly address organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience…
Whereas Freedom House reported in 2015 that Falun Gong practitioners comprise the largest portion of prisoners of conscience in China, and face an elevated risk of dying or being killed in custody….
The resolution also states:
Whereas Falun Gong, a spiritual practice involving meditative “qigong” exercises and centered on the values of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance, became immensely popular in the 1990s;
Whereas in July 1999, the Chinese Communist Party launched an intensive, nationwide persecution designed to eradicate the spiritual practice of Falun Gong, reflecting the party’s long-standing intolerance of large independent civil society groups;
Whereas since 1999, hundreds of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners have been detained extra-legally in reeducation-through-labor camps, detention centers, and prisons, where torture and abuse are routine;
Whereas in many detention facilities and labor camps, Falun Gong prisoners of conscience comprise the majority of the population, and have been said to receive the longest sentences and the worst treatment….
Therefore, the resolution demands an immediate end to the 17-year persecution of the Falun Gong spiritual practice by the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Communist Party of China, and the immediate release of all Falun Gong practitioners and other prisoners of conscience; encourages the United States medical community to help raise awareness of unethical organ transplant practices in China; calls on the People’s Republic of China to allow a credible, transparent, and independent investigation into organ transplant abuses.
Congressman Chris Smith from New Jersey mentioned a latest report before the voting procedure. He pointed out that “despite the Chinese Government’s promises to the contrary, the number of prisoners who are killed and have their organs taken continues to rise.”
US Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) (Photo / Courtesy of The Epoch Times)
The said report was authored by former Canadian parliamentarian David Kilgour, Canadian human rights lawyer David Matas and a senior investigative journalist Ethan Gutmann. They conducted detailed investigations and published their latest report on June 22, 2016.
Canadian human rights lawyer David Matas spoke at the latest report’s launch at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. on June 22, 2016. (Photo / Courtesy of The Epoch Times)
In fact, Matas and Kilgour had published Report into Allegations of Organ Harvesting of Falun Gong Practitioners in China in July 2006. It concluded that “there has been and continues today to be large scale organ seizures from unwilling Falun Gong practitioners.” Gutmann also published the book The Slaughter in August 2014. The latest report is an update to the former book and reports.
The basis of the report is a meticulous examination of the transplant programs of hundreds of hospitals in China, drawing on media reports, official propaganda, medical journals, hospital websites and a vast number of website archives now deleted. The report shows that from 2000 to 2015, the number of organ transplants carried out in China could be up to 1-1.5 million. And the source for most of the massive volume of organs for transplants is the killing of innocents: Uyghurs, Tibetans, House Christians and primarily, practitioners of the spiritually based set of exercises Falun Gong.
Ethan Gutmann said in an interview, “We hope this report will lead to some policy changes in the west. We’re not expecting the western nations to cut off economic relations with China. But we do expect that we will try to keep our own hands clean. That at least this is the minimum requirement of the western society now. If we have people going to China to get organs, that needs to be recorded.” “We should never get a question saying how many of our citizens are going to China for an organ.”
Ethan Gutmann, senior investigative journalist, co-author of the latest report on forced organ harvesting in China (Photo / Courtesy of The Epoch Times)
After the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed H.Res.343, the Written Declaration 48 (2016/WD48) won the support of 413, more than half of all the Members of European Parliament, and was passed on July 27, 2016. The Declaration requires the Council of Europe and the European Union Committees to investigate immediately the crime of live organ harvesting by the Chinese regime.
Text of H. Res. 343