SENATE RESOLUTION 220--EXPRESSING SOLIDARITY WITH FALUN GONG PRACTITIONERS WHO HAVE LOST LIVES, FREEDOMS, AND RIGHTS FOR ADHERING TO THEIR BELIEFS AND PRACTICES AND CONDEMNING THE PRACTICE OF NON...; Congressional Record Vol. 163, No. 118
(Senate - July 13, 2017)

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[Pages S4001-S4002]
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     SENATE RESOLUTION 220--EXPRESSING SOLIDARITY WITH FALUN GONG 
PRACTITIONERS WHO HAVE LOST LIVES, FREEDOMS, AND RIGHTS FOR ADHERING TO 
    THEIR BELIEFS AND PRACTICES AND CONDEMNING THE PRACTICE OF NON-
          CONSENTING ORGAN HARVESTING, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

  Mr. MENENDEZ (for himself, Mr. Moran, Mr. Cassidy, Mr. Boozman, Mr. 
Markey, Mr. Brown, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Rubio, Mr. Tillis, and Mr. Coons) 
submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee 
on Foreign Relations:

                              S. Res. 220

       Whereas Falun Gong (also known as Falun Dafa) is a Chinese 
     spiritual discipline founded by Li Hongzhi in 1992 that 
     consists of spiritual and moral teachings, meditation, and 
     exercise, and is based upon the universal principles of 
     truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance;
       Whereas, during the mid-1990s, Falun Gong acquired a large 
     and diverse following, with as many as 70,000,000 
     practitioners at its peak;
       Whereas, on April 25, 1999, an estimated 10,000 to 30,000 
     Falun Gong practitioners gathered in Beijing to protest 
     growing restrictions by the Government of the People's 
     Republic of China on the activities of Falun Gong 
     practitioners, and the Government of the People's Republic of 
     China responded with an intensive, comprehensive, and 
     unforgiving campaign against the movement that began on July 
     20, 1999, with the banning of Falun Gong;
       Whereas the Constitution of the People's Republic of China 
     guarantees basic rights, including the freedoms of speech, 
     association, demonstration, and religion;
       Whereas, in 1993, the Government of the People's Republic 
     of China praised Li Hongzhi for his contributions in 
     ``safeguarding social order and security'' and ``promoting 
     rectitude in society'';
       Whereas, in many detention facilities and labor camps, 
     Falun Gong prisoners of conscience have at times comprised 
     the majority of the population, and have been said to receive 
     the longest sentences and the worst treatment, including 
     torture;
       Whereas, according to overseas Falun Gong and human rights 
     organizations, since 1999, from several hundred to a few 
     thousand Falun Gong adherents have died in custody from 
     torture, abuse, and neglect;
       Whereas a review of the Government of the People's Republic 
     of China by the United Nations Human Rights Council's Working 
     Group on the Universal Periodic Review in October 2013 
     recommended that China ``[s]top the prosecution and 
     persecution of people for the practice of their religion or 
     belief including Catholics, other Christians, Tibetans, 
     Uyghurs, and Falun Gong'';
       Whereas the United Nations Committee Against Torture and 
     the Special Rapporteur on Torture have expressed concern over 
     the allegations of organ harvesting from Falun Gong 
     prisoners, and have called on the Government of the People's 
     Republic of China to increase accountability and transparency 
     in the organ transplant system and punish those responsible 
     for abuses;
       Whereas the killing of religious or political prisoners for 
     the purpose of selling their organs for transplant is an 
     egregious and intolerable violation of the fundamental right 
     to life;
       Whereas voluntary and informed consent is the precondition 
     for ethical organ donation, and international medical 
     organizations state that prisoners, deprived of their 
     freedom, are not in the position to give free consent and 
     that the practice of sourcing organs from prisoners is a 
     violation of ethical guidelines in medicine;
       Whereas the Government of the People's Republic of China 
     and the Communist Party of China continue to deny reports 
     that many organs are taken without the consent of prisoners, 
     yet at the same time prevent independent verification of its 
     transplant system;
       Whereas the organ transplantation system in China does not 
     comply with the World Health Organization's requirement of 
     transparency and traceability in organ procurement pathways;
       Whereas the United States Department of State Country 
     Report on Human Rights for China for 2014 stated, ``Advocacy 
     groups continued to report instances of organ harvesting from 
     prisoners.'';
       Whereas Huang Jiefu, director of the China Organ Donation 
     Committee, announced in December 2014 that China would end 
     the practice of organ harvesting from executed prisoners by 
     January 1, 2015, but did not directly address organ 
     harvesting from prisoners of conscience;
       Whereas Freedom House reported in 2015 that Falun Gong 
     practitioners comprise the largest portion of prisoners of 
     conscience in China, and face an elevated risk of dying or 
     being killed in custody;
       Whereas the Department of State Country Report on Human 
     Rights for China for 2016 reported that ``some international 
     medical professionals and human rights researchers questioned 
     the voluntary nature of the (transplantation) system, the 
     accuracy of official statistics, and official claims about 
     the source of organs'';
       Whereas the Congressional-Executive Commission on China 
     (CECC) stated in 2016 that ``international observers, 
     including the U.S. House of Representatives and the European

[[Page S4002]]

     Parliament, expressed concern over reports that numerous 
     organ transplantations have used the organs of detained 
     prisoners, including Falun Gong practitioners'' and also 
     noted that international medical professionals ``expressed 
     skepticism of reforms raised by discrepancies in official 
     data''; and
       Whereas a 2017 report by Freedom House concluded that there 
     was ``credible evidence suggesting that beginning in the 
     early 2000s, Falun Gong detainees were killed for their 
     organs on a large scale'': Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the Senate--
       (1) expresses solidarity with Falun Gong practitioners and 
     their families for the lives, freedoms, and rights they lost 
     for adhering to their beliefs and practices;
       (2) emphasizes to the Government of the People's Republic 
     of China that freedom of religion includes the right of Falun 
     Gong practitioners to freely practice Falun Gong in China;
       (3) calls upon the Communist Party of China to immediately 
     cease and desist from its campaign to persecute Falun Gong 
     practitioners and promptly release all Falun Gong 
     practitioners who have been confined, detained, or imprisoned 
     for pursuing their right to hold and exercise their spiritual 
     beliefs;
       (4) condemns the practice of non-consenting organ 
     harvesting in the People's Republic of China;
       (5) calls on the Government of the People's Republic of 
     China and the Communist Party of China to immediately end the 
     practice of organ harvesting from all prisoners of 
     conscience; and
       (6) calls on the People's Republic of China to allow an 
     independent and transparent investigation into organ 
     transplant abuses.

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