Taipei Times (Taiwan), Mar. 2, 2003
Following reports last month of the mistreatment of Taiwanese Falun Gong members at the hands of Hong Kong immigration, Vice President Annette Lu yesterday called on the public to view the incident as a serious violation of human rights.
Lu made the remark during a press conference called by the President’s Advisory Group on Human Rights.
The vice president also expressed the hope that the Hong Kong authorities would not sweep the incident under the carpet.
“As religious belief, physical health and the freedom to travel all are basic human rights, the fact that this kind of thing took place in Hong Kong in 2003 makes it look uncivilized,” she said. “It shows how far human rights have deteriorated during the five years following its return to China.”
She added that this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to violations of human rights in many regions of China.
On Feb. 21, about 40 Taiwanese Falun Gong followers were denied entry to Hong Kong to attend a Falun Gong conference.
All of the followers were forcibly repatriated, even though they had valid Hong Kong visas.
Liao Fu-te, deputy convener of the group, demanded that the Hong Kong government take the following four steps.
Firstly, that it offers a public apology to the Falun Gong members who were mistreated.
Secondly, that it investigate where responsibility for the incident lies, and that appropriate disciplinary measures be taken against the person responsible.
Thirdly, that it review its immigration management policies and fourthly, that it implement the Hong Kong Human Bill of Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.