News Release: Canada is called upon to speak out against the HK

  • From: "Falun Dafa Canada InfoCentre" <info-centre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: dafa-news-ottawa@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 14 Dec 2002 21:28:37 +0000

News Release                    For Immediate Release    December 13, 2002

Canada is called upon to speak out against the HK 
“anti subversion” law (Article 23)
-- MP and NGO coalition join the global campaign

Ottawa, Dec. 13, 2002 - Mr. Stockwell Day, MP, Mr. Alex Neve, Secretary General 
of Amnesty International of Canada, Mr. Cheuk Kwan, Chair of the Toronto 
Association for Democracy in China, and Ms. Grace Wollensak, Falun Dafa 
Association of Canada representative held a joint press conference today at 
Parliament Hill. The group joins a global campaign opposing the Hong Kong 
government’s proposal to implement an anti-subversion law (Article 23 of the 
Basic Law).  The 3-month consultation period for the proposal ends on December 
24, 2002.

In his opening remarks Mr. Day said, “We share the concerns that some changes 
made related to the Basic Law of Hong Kong, notably Article 23, may indeed 
encroach upon freedoms. It is our responsibility to speak up for those citizens 
when we feel their rights are being encroached.”

“Hong Kong has offered a beacon of respect for basic rights amidst China's 
bleak and harrowing human rights landscape. There is now a very real risk that 
the beacon will dim.” said Mr. Neve. “It is critical that the world 
community, including Canada, acts now to clearly signal that legislative change 
being considered for Hong Kong be change that bolsters and strengthens human 
rights and does not see Hong Kong slide into China's human rights abyss.” Mr. 
Neve continued, “Any such laws must not serve as a pretext for criminalizing 
or restricting the exercise of fundamental rights; rights that are too often 
ignored and violated within Mainland China; rights that must be scrupulously 
safeguarded in Hong Kong.”

Mr. Kwan, on behalf of the Association for Democracy in China from Ottawa, 
Calgary, and Vancouver, read a letter addressed to the Prime Minister, which 
stated in part: “We urge Canada to speak out against the enactment of Article 
23 before the consultation period expires on December 24, 2002. We further urge 
Canada to use its good standing in the international human rights community to 
urge other countries to do the same.”

Ms. Wollensak presented a number of persecution cases involving Falun Gong 
practitioners in China that clearly demonstrated what could happen in Hong Kong 
if it implements the anti-subversion law under pressure from Beijing. Examples 
included Dr. Teng Chunyan and Mr. Yuhui Zhang. US resident Dr. Teng Chunyan was 
charged with “leaking state secrets” and sentenced to three years in prison 
after revealing the fact that Falun Gong practitioners were being abused in 
psychiatric hospitals. Macau resident Mr. Yuhui Zhang was arrested during his 
business trip to Mainland China. He was charged with “subversion” and 
sentenced to 10 years in jail for posting pro-Falun Gong articles on the 
Internet. “We would never want to see the Hong Kong people suffer these kinds 
of attacks on their basic freedoms.  We deeply feel that the Hong Kong 
government should defer the enactment indefinitely.” concluded Ms. Wollensak.

On September 24, 2002, the government of Hong Kong published a consultation 
document containing a proposal to implement Article 23 of the Basic Law. The 
legislation deals with the offences of treason, secession, sedition, and 
subversion against the central government in Beijing and the prohibition of the 
theft of state secrets and political activities by foreign political 
organizations in Hong Kong.
The proposal has provoked widespread and strong opposition from key figures in 
the legal, political, human rights, religious, media, financial, and other 
communities in Hong Kong and around the world. Please see:

For more information, please contact Grace Wollensak: (613) 225-4408, or (613) 


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