China “silent” on whereabouts of Taiwan Falun Gong member

Chinese authorities kept silent on the whereabouts of missing Taiwanese Falun Gong practitioner Lin Hsiao-kai yesterday, ignoring multi-channel extrication demands.

“I have been calling Shanghai’s national security bureau, but they keep telling me to call back without offering confirmation or elaboration,” said Lin’s wife Chen Shu-ya, who believed the bureau arrested and detained her husband for practising Falun Gong.

Lin, who entered China to visit friends on 29 September, failed to make his return trip by 8 October. After waiting a week, his wife officially sought help from the Strait Exchange Foundation on 16 October.

Reacting to Chen’s request, the SEF sent an official letter to its Beijing counterpart the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait Tuesday, demanding that Chinese authorities ensure Lin’s safety.

Furthermore, the SEF also sought help from Taiwanese businessmen in Shanghai.

Yeh Huei-te, chairman of the Shanghai-based Taiwanese Chamber of Commerce, who received a request for assistance from the SEF Tuesday, said that he had officially submitted a document asking for the Shanghai Taiwan affairs’ office to search for Lin.

Yeh said that he has learned from Chinese government records that Lin entered China on 29 September, but there is no record of departure from China.

The Taiwan affairs’ office, however, has yet to provide any confirmation or explanations as to Lin’s location, according to Yeh.

Despite the Taiwan Falun Dafa Institute insisting that Lin had never been an active practitioner, Yeh said in an interview from Shanghai that Lin could not have been arrested, if he kept a low profile and refrained from publicly advocating the Falun Gong practices in China.

Rumours persist that Lin carried some Falun Gong literature with him to China and which could constitute reason for his arrest.

Chen Ching-hsi, director of its Taiwan institute, emphasized that FLG is not a secretive organization and all of their materials are available on web sites, and carrying those materials should not have been an issue.

Lin’s wife, another FLG practitioner, echoed Chang’s remark and condemned China’s illegal action towards FLG practitioners.

“China’s performance is simply illegal, no matter how you look at the issue from any perspective,” Chen said, explaining that FLG members have carried FLG materials to some 60 nations around the world without any trouble.

China’s former President Jiang Zemin launched a campaign to crack down on the Falun Gong by using China’s special “610 Office” since July 1999.

According to its official web site, some 800 FLG practitioners have been tortured to death, while more than 500 have been illegally sentenced to jail in China.

In a bid to make China’s former president pay damages to the organization, practitioners have filed lawsuits against him around the world, which include Illinois in the United States and Madrid in Spain.

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Taiwan News, Taiwan
Oct. 23, 2003
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Religion News Blog posted this on Thursday October 23, 2003.
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