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David Liang, Gunshot-Wounded Australian Returns from South Africa (Photos)

07-07-2004

 

Sydney resident David Liang, father of two, was among nine Australians Falun Gong practitioners who arrived in South Africa on 28th June to file a lawsuit against Chinese officials visiting Johannesburg. Little did he know that his efforts to seek justice would nearly cost him his life.

David Liang, who was shot by an attempted murder while he and other 8 Falun Gong practitioners went to raise awareness of the human rights violation by the visiting Chinese vice-president Zeng Qinghong and trade minister Bo Xilai.

Chinese Vice-President Zeng Qinghong and Trade Minister Bo Xilai have both played a pivotal role in former Chinese head of state Jiang Zemin's persecution against Falun Gong. David and the others intended to join South African Falun Gong practitioners in a press conference to expose the crimes of torture and genocide, and serve legal papers on Zeng and Bo during their visits.

While driving one of the cars, David came under a barrage of bullets within a few hours of landing at the airport. Five shots from an AK47 assault rifle hit the car, disabling it immediately. The Sydney man was left with bullet wounds and a shattered foot.

The car that David was driving were shot.

David Liang's feet were shot and seriously injured.

Gunmen fled straight after the shooting. South African Police are investigating the incident as attempted murder. Observers say this incident marks a new level of violence against Falun Gong practitioners outside of China.

Recently Falun Gong practitioners around the globe have filed many lawsuits against Chinese officials who are actively enforcing the persecution. A number of famous human rights attorneys are assisting in these legal proceedings.

More Background Information:

Zeng Qinghong, a major player in Jiang Zemin's persecution of Falun Gong, is visiting South Africa from Jun 27-29. On the night of the 28th, gunmen attacked Australian Falun Gong practitioners who had heard the news and were on their way to the Presidential Guest House. Out of the practitioners, the only one who wore clothing with the Falun Dafa insignia, David Liang, was shot, causing crushing injuries to his foot. This is the most severe case of persecution against overseas Falun Gong practitioners in the last five years. The victims believe that this was a deliberate assassination attempt by hired gunmen.

After learning that Zeng Qinghong and company were visiting South Africa from June 27 to June 29, seeking to put a stop to the persecution through legal means, nine Australia Falun Gong practitioners arrived at the Johannesburg International Airport at around 6 pm local time on June 28. Because there are no Falun Gong practitioners in Johannesburg, a practitioner from another city in South Africa picked them up. Afterwards, the nine Australian practitioners left the airport in two cars, heading to the Presidential Guest House in Pretoria.

On the way, at approximately 8:30 p.m., a person in a white car suddenly opened fire from the side slightly behind the second vehicle driven by the practitioners, targeting the tires and the driver. The car was hit at least five times. The Falun Gong practitioner who was driving, David Liang, is an Australian Falun Gong practitioner. He was the only person wearing a blue jacket favored by Taiwanese practitioners that says "Falun Dafa" in English.

David Liang was hit in both feet. The car he was driving was severely damaged and came to a stop. Seeing this, the gunmen quickly fled the scene.

David Liang was immediately taken to the nearby Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital for emergency treatment. X-rays showed that one foot suffered crushing fractures, and the hospital decided to perform an operation the following morning.

Since July 1999, former Chinese National Chairman Jiang Zemin unilaterally enacted the genocidal policies of "destroying them physically, defaming their reputations, and bankrupting them financially", "beating to death is nothing and can be counted as suicide" against Falun Gong practitioners. This led to at least 996 named and confirmed cases of Falun Gong practitioners being killed by the persecution in China. The Falun Gong practitioners have named Zeng Qinghong as one of the main accomplices of this persecution.

Zeng Qinghong was originally a Communist official in Shanghai and followed Jiang Zemin into Zhongnanhai (the Chinese central leadership compound) after the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre. He is a trusted associate of Jiang Zemin, in charge of the Party's secret service and currently holding the post of Deputy National Chairman. Zeng Qinghong had helped Jiang Zemin to get rid of all of his political opponents inside the Party, and was dubbed the "Black-Faced Assassin" by Party insiders. His methods in attacking others are especially brutal.

Tens of millions of Falun Gong practitioners have been subjected to the brutal persecution for as long as five years. In order to put a stop to the persecution, in the past two years Falun Gong practitioners outside of China have been proactively seeking legal means to resolve the situation peacefully. Jiang Zemin and his accomplices have been served with lawsuits while visiting places outside of China. After Jiang Zemin was served with lawsuits charging him with genocide and torture in 2002 in U.S. district court, on the surface he doesn't dare to acknowledge the lawsuit's existence, yet in the background he is applying pressure to the U.S. government. He has utilized various underhanded tactics, hoping to stop the lawsuit's progress by any means necessary.

One of the Australian Falun Gong practitioners involved stated that this incident in Johannesburg was an act of state terrorism and an assassination attempt by Jiang Zemin's Chinese Communist regime.

A local person who passed by the scene of the attack with his family said after hearing the Falun Gong practitioners' account of the persecution in China, "This is a form of political persecution."

This case was immediately brought to the local police bureau. The serial number attached to this case is BOOYSENS CASE 1553/06/2004.

Ms. Li Ying, wife of Mr. Li Qizhong, one of the victims in the South Africa incident, said that before her husband's trip to South Africa, he received a threatening phone call. Many signs indicated that this shooting incident was a hired murder attempt. First, these Australian Falun Gong practitioners had gone to South Africa for the first time and have no enemies in South Africa. Secondly, after the shooting, there was no robbery; instead, the attackers immediately fled away. Thirdly, the shooting incident prevented the planned lawsuit against Zeng Qinghong from being filed.

Officials from the South African Embassy in Australia has expressed that they received the news release from Falun Dafa Information Center before their discussion and had already reported it to their superiors. The South African police are investigating this case and they will try their best to find out the real criminals. The police categorized this case as "attempted murder". When the officials looked at the photos showing Mr. David Liang's injured and bleeding feet, they were all shocked and expressed that there was little doubt that this was an assassination attempt.

South Africa has close ties with the Chinese government, and it is Zeng Qinghong's last stop in his four-country visit in Africa. After concluding the visit to the Benin Republic on June 26, Zeng Qinghong began his official visit to South Africa. Zeng Qinghong met with South African President Thabo Mbeki in Johannesburg on the 28th.

According to BBC Worldwide Mornitoring report: [excerpt] "Zeng thanked the South African government for helping it kill a debate on its human rights record at the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva recently. He said the BNC meeting had greatly strengthened the strategic partnership between China and South Africa, including their international cooperation. "Your government has advocated a one-China policy and supported China at this year's UNHRC, which we deeply appreciate," Zeng told Zuma.

In Geneva, as in the past, China submitted a "no action motion" to ensure its human rights were not debated. South Africa had previously opposed this motion on the principle that China's human rights record - like anyone else's - should at least be aired. But official sources said last year that South Africa had departed from this principle itself, by proposing a "no action motion" on a proposal to debate Zimbabwe's human rights record. China supported this motion.

Having abandoned the principle of opposing no action motions, South Africa could no longer oppose the "no action motion" on China this year, the sources said. "

Posting date: 7/Jul/2004
Original article date: 6/Jul/2004
Category: Australian News



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