636 Falun Gong Practitioners Arrested in September 2019

According to information compiled by Minghui.org, 636 Falun Gong practitioners in China were arrested and 347 were harassed in September 2019 for refusing to give up their faith. Of those targeted, 251 had their homes ransacked and at least 500 remain in custody at the time of writing.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual practice centered on the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance. Since the Chinese communist regime started persecuting the practice in July 1999, many of its adherents have been subjected to arrest, imprisonment, torture, forced labor, and even organ harvesting.

Many of the arrests and incidents of harassment took place under the pretense of “assuring social stability” during celebrations for the 70th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party’s founding on October 1, 1949. Police brutality was also reported in the month of September, with some practitioners assaulted during the arrests and their family members beaten when the latter tried to seek the former’s release.

The arrests took place in 29 provinces and centrally-controlled municipalities. The regions reporting the most arrests were Jilin Province (89), followed by Hubei Province (79) and Liaoning Province (68).

Twenty practitioners also had money confiscated or extorted from them by police. The total amount added up to 852,928 yuan, averaging 42,646 yuan per person.

Mr. Xu Zhangqing and his wife Ms. Tu Ailan in Xiaogan City, Hubei Province, were arrested on September 26, 2019 for practicing Falun Gong. The police confiscated their personal belongings, including their lifetime savings of 300,000 yuan in cash. Their son, who doesn’t practice Falun Gong, was also arrested and detained. The couple’s daughter-in-law, Ms. Chen Chunyan, faced frequent harassment from police after her husband and parents-in-law were arrested. She was later forced to live away from home with her one-year-old baby girl to avoid arrest.