Text: H.Con.Res.304 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)

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Engrossed in House (10/04/2004)

 
[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H. Con. Res. 304 Engrossed in House (EH)]


  2d Session

                            H. CON. RES. 304

_______________________________________________________________________

                         CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Expressing the sense of Congress regarding oppression by the Government 
 of the People's Republic of China of Falun Gong in the United States 
                             and in China.
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
108th CONGRESS
  2d Session
H. CON. RES. 304

_______________________________________________________________________

                         CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Whereas Falun Gong is a peaceful spiritual movement that originated in the 
        People's Republic of China but has grown in popularity worldwide and is 
        now accepted and practiced by thousands in the United States;
Whereas demonstrations by Falun Gong practitioners in the People's Republic of 
        China and the United States have been peaceful, meditative sessions;
Whereas the Constitution of the People's Republic of China provides to the 
        citizens of that country freedom of speech, assembly, association, and 
        religious belief;
Whereas members of the Falun Gong spiritual movement, members of Chinese pro-
        democracy groups, and advocates of human rights reform in the People's 
        Republic of China have been harassed, libeled, imprisoned, and beaten 
        for demonstrating peacefully inside that country;
Whereas the Chinese Government has also attempted to silence the Falun Gong 
        movement and Chinese prodemocracy groups inside the United States;
Whereas on June 12, 2003, 38 Members of Congress filed an Amended Brief of 
        Amicus Curiae in support of the Falun Gong at the United States District 
        Court, Northeastern District of Illinois, Eastern Division;
Whereas Chinese consular officials have pressured local elected officials in the 
        United States to refuse or withdraw support for the Falun Gong spiritual 
        group;
Whereas Dr. Charles Lee, a United States citizen, has reportedly been mentally 
        and physically tortured since being detained by Chinese authorities in 
        early 2003;
Whereas the apartment of Ms. Gail Rachlin, the Falun Gong spokeswoman in the 
        United States, has been broken into 5 times by agents of the Chinese 
        regime since the regime banned Falun Gong in 1999 in China;
Whereas over the past 5 years China's diplomatic corps has been actively 
        involved in harassing and persecuting Falun Gong practitioners in the 
        United States;
Whereas on June 23, 2003, Falun Gong practitioners were attacked outside a 
        Chinese restaurant in New York City by local United States-based 
        individuals with reported ties to the Chinese Government;
Whereas 5 Falun Gong practitioners were assaulted outside of the Chinese 
        Consulate in Chicago on September 7, 2001, while exercising their 
        constitutionally protected rights to free speech, leading to battery 
        convictions in Cook County Criminal Court of Jiming Zheng on November 
        13, 2002, and Yujun Weng on December 5, 2002, both assailants being 
        members of a Chinese-American organization in Chicago, the Mid-USA 
        Fujian Township Association, which maintains close ties with the Chinese 
        Consulate;
Whereas individuals that physically harassed Falun Gong practitioners in San 
        Francisco on October 22, 2000, were later seen at anti-Falun Gong 
        meetings and the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco;
Whereas San Francisco City Supervisor Chris Daly, after receiving complaints 
        that Chinese officials were intimidating his constituents, authored a 
        resolution condemning human rights violations and persecution of Falun 
        Gong members by the Chinese Government;
Whereas Mr. Daly and the other members of the San Francisco City Council 
        subsequently received a letter from the Chinese Consul General in San 
        Francisco, claiming that Falun Gong was an ``evil cult'' that was 
        undermining the ``normal social order'' in the People's Republic of 
        China, and that Mr. Daly's resolution should therefore be rejected, 
        which it subsequently was;
Whereas in November 2000, the former Mayor of Saratoga, California, Stan 
        Bogosian, issued a proclamation honoring the contributions of Falun Gong 
        practitioners to the Saratoga community, which prompted the Chinese 
        Consulate in San Francisco to write to Mr. Bogosian urging him to 
        retract his support for local Falun Gong activities;
Whereas many local and national media organizations have reported that other 
        local officials across the United States, including the mayors of 
        several major cities, have been pressured by Chinese consular officials 
        to recant statements of support for the Falun Gong;
Whereas journalists have cited fear of hurting trade relationships as the 
        motivation for some local United States officials to recant their 
        support for Falun Gong after receiving pressure from Chinese consular 
        officials; and
Whereas the Constitution of the United States guarantees freedom of religion, 
        the right to assemble, and the right to speak freely, and the people of 
        the United States strongly value protecting the ability of all people to 
        live without fear and in accordance with their personal beliefs: Now, 
        therefore, be it
    Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), 
That it is the sense of Congress that--
            (1) the Government of the People's Republic of China 
        should--
                    (A) immediately stop interfering in the exercise of 
                religious and political freedoms within the United 
                States, such as the right to practice Falun Gong, that 
                are guaranteed by the United States Constitution;
                    (B) cease using the diplomatic missions in the 
                United States to spread falsehoods about the nature of 
                Falun Gong;
                    (C) release from detention all prisoners of 
                conscience, including practitioners of Falun Gong, who 
                have been incarcerated in violation of their rights as 
                expressed in the Constitution of the People's Republic 
                of China;
                    (D) immediately end the harassment, detention, 
                physical abuse, and imprisonment of individuals who are 
                exercising their legitimate rights to freedom of 
                religion, including the practices of Falun Gong, 
                freedom of expression, and freedom of association as 
                stated in the Constitution of the People's Republic of 
                China; and
                    (E) demonstrate its willingness to abide by 
                international standards of freedom of belief, 
                expression, and association by ceasing to restrict 
                those freedoms in the People's Republic of China;
            (2) the President should, in accordance with section 
        401(a)(1)(B) of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 
        (22 U.S.C. 6401(a)(1)(B)), and with the intention of dissuading 
        the Chinese Government from attempting to stifle religious 
        freedom in the People's Republic of China and the United 
        States, take action such as--
                    (A) issuing an official public demarche, a formal 
                protest, to the Chinese Foreign Ministry in response to 
                the repeated violations by the Chinese Government of 
                basic human rights protected in international covenants 
                to which the People's Republic of China is a signatory; 
                and
                    (B) working more closely with Chinese human rights 
                activists to identify Chinese authorities who have been 
                personally responsible for acts of violence and 
                persecution in the People's Republic of China;
            (3) the Attorney General should investigate reports that 
        Chinese consular officials in the United States have committed 
        illegal acts while attempting to intimidate or inappropriately 
        influence Falun Gong practitioners or local elected officials, 
        and, in consultation with the Secretary of State, determine an 
        appropriate legal response; and
            (4) officials of local governments in the United States 
        should--
                    (A) in accordance with local statutes and 
                procedures, recognize and support organizations and 
                individuals that share the goals of all or part of the 
                local community, including Falun Gong practitioners; 
                and
                    (B) report incidents of pressure or harassment by 
                agents of the People's Republic of China to Members of 
                Congress, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of 
                State.

            Passed the House of Representatives October 4, 2004.

            Attest:

                                                                 Clerk.