Taiwanese businessman Lee Meng-chu, recently returned to Taiwan after 22 months of imprisonment in China, sheds light on the persecution of Chinese citizens, particularly Falun Gong practitioners, within Chinese prisons.
Mr. Lee, detained during the large-scale “anti-extradition” protests in Hong Kong in June 2019, faced charges of alleged espionage activities. Chinese authorities linked him to “hundreds of espionage cases involving spies from Taiwan.” He was accused of being part of “Taiwan independence” forces involved in espionage and meddling in Hong Kong affairs.
During his two-year “supplementary punishment,” Mr. Lee traveled to over 100 Chinese cities, gaining insights into the atrocities within prisons, specifically the mistreatment of Falun Gong adherents.
In Zhaoqing Prison in Guangdong Province, where Mr. Lee was detained, he observed the targeted persecution of Falun Gong practitioners. Despite official estimates of 70 to 100 million adherents by the end of the 1990s, the Chinese regime initiated a campaign in 1999 to eradicate Falun Gong, leading to mass detentions, torture, and other abuses.
Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline based on truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance, has faced severe oppression under the communist regime. In prison, Mr. Lee noted that practitioners were punished merely for practicing their beliefs.
Additionally, Mr. Lee highlighted an unusual phenomenon in Chinese prisons—prisoners without identifiable names or backgrounds tended to vanish. Speculations arose among inmates about live organ harvesting, with around one-third of new inmates disappearing within four months in a Northeast China prison.
During his travels, Mr. Lee encountered stories about the disappearance of Falun Gong practitioners in Changchun city. A local friend shared that after the CCP began persecuting Falun Gong, many practitioners, including the friend’s classmates and entire families, inexplicably disappeared.
Despite Beijing’s campaign to smear Falun Gong, Mr. Lee emphasized that many Chinese citizens, including the youth, have become aware of the CCP’s deceit and brutality. He believes that the regime employs extreme measures to suppress religious beliefs due to its atheistic nature. Mr. Lee cautioned against assuming that dialogue with the CCP on fundamental rights is possible, stating that “Communists cannot tolerate dissenting voices in society.”