The Chinese Government Never Officially “Banned” Falun Gong, Part 2

After July 20, 1999, media or even scholarly works outside of China have often used the words, "The Chinese government has banned Falun Gong since July of 1999." It is my belief that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has never had a legal basis for its eleven-year persecution of Falun Gong, because the Chinese government never officially banned Falun Gong. I won't delve into the subject of the current Chinese government's legitimacy itself since its inception in 1949 for now, but even according to the Chinese government's own laws, the persecution by the CCP and Jiang Zemin's gang is illegal.

The first cause of most people's confusion is seeing the "CCP" and the "Chinese government" as being interchangeable, or even mixing up the head of the CCP with China the country or the Chinese government as an entity. The second cause is that the CCP intentionally uses this term in its propaganda to confuse public opinion. A third cause is their lack of understanding of what it means to ban something in a legal sense.

II. The CCP's Propaganda and Slander

Starting on the morning of July 20, 1999, the Ministry of Public Security conducted simultaneous mass arrests of Falun Gong practitioners in major cities across China. In the process they arrested the founding members of the disbanded Falun Gong Research Society, as well as thousands of volunteer assistants. On July 21 and 22, Falun Gong practitioners all over the country went to their local CCP offices to request an end to the persecution, but they were met with police violence, illegal detention, and interrogation. An estimated 300,000 plus practitioners were arrested during those few days.

A. There are several things to note here. First, the mass arrests initiated on July 20, 1999, were carried out without any legal basis and amounted to illegal arrests. The appeal made by Falun Gong practitioners on April 25 of the same year were completely in accordance with Chinese laws and regulations. They followed the appeals process, did not disrupt the operations of the government, and did not cause harm to any public property–their actions were completely in accordance with the law. I have listed a few supporting excerpts below.

  • Article 41 of the Constitution of the People's Republic of China states, "Citizens of the People's Republic of China have the right to criticize and make suggestions regarding any state organ or functionary. Citizens have the right to make to relevant state organs complaints or charges against, or exposures of, any state organ or functionary for violation of the law or dereliction of duty, but fabrication or distortion of facts for purposes of libel or false incrimination is prohibited. The state organ concerned must deal with complaints, charges or exposures made by citizens in a responsible manner after ascertaining the facts. No one may suppress such complaints, charges and exposures or retaliate against the citizens making them. Citizens who have suffered losses as a result of infringement of their civic rights by any state organ or functionary have the right to compensation in accordance with the law."

  • Article 7 of the Provisional Regulations for Chinese Government Employees states, "Government employees have the right to provide criticism and suggestions regarding the work of national administrative organs and its leaders."

  • Article 8 of the Regulations Governing Appeals states that appellants "may make criticisms, suggestions, and requests of government administrative organs and its employees" and "lodge accusations against activities that infringe upon one's legal rights and interests."

  • Article 27 of the Regulations Governing Appeals states, "Administrative organs at each level and their employees, in handling appeals, should scrupulously fulfill their duties, impartially handle such affairs, thoroughly investigate the facts, have a clear separation of duties, clear away obstacles, and handle these affairs in a timely, appropriate, and correct manner. They may not shift responsibility to others, only go through the motions, or delay matters."

  • Article 10 of the Regulations Governing Appeals states, "Appellants should bring the subject of their appeal to the administrative organ that is relevant to the subject matter, or the organ that is one level above said organ."

Immediately following the incident only April 23, where Tianjin police violently assaulted and arrested Falun Gong practitioners, practitioners when to the Tianjin City government appeals office on April 24 to lodge appeals. On that day, the Tianjin appeals office did not handle the issue in a timely manner, but instead used delay tactics and tried to shift responsibility. In addition, the Tianjin Police Department arrested nearly forty more practitioners. Given such circumstances, Falun Gong practitioners went to the administrative organ one level above the Tianjin government, which is the Central Government (given Tianjin's status as a directly-controlled municipality), and lodged their appeal there. This was also in accordance with the regulations governing the appeals process.

B. Aside from being in accordance with Chinese law, the Falun Gong practitioners' appeal also complied with CCP regulations.

  • Article 4 of the Constitution of the Communist Party of China states, "Party members enjoy the following rights: …To make suggestions and proposals regarding the work of the Party."

  • "Regulations Regarding Political Life Within the Party" require that Communist members respect the facts at any time, anywhere, and with regards to themselves or others. They are required to reflect the true situation to the Party at all times.

The reality is that ever since the specter of communism made its way into China and established its power, it has never followed the rule of law or respected morality and justice. Whatever it fears and therefore targets for persecution, the CCP habitually first frames them with sensational crimes and swiftly follows with bloody persecution. That is exactly what it did to Falun Gong practitioners. The law is simply a pretense that the CCP uses to hide its crimes from the light of day. The premise for the establishment of law is to uphold fairness, justice, and upright values, and to prevent the erosion of social order as human morality slides downwards. A good law is one that is in accordance with the concepts of fairness, justice, and being upright, whereas a law that goes against such principles and is reduced to being a tool in the hands of the evil is a wicked law. Indeed, the CCP has established many such wicked laws. It's worth noting that this article references Chinese laws, the Chinese Constitution, and the Chinese Communist Party's Constitution not to affirm the CCP, but rather to remind the reader of this simple fact: the CCP has never respected the rule of law, even the bad laws that it made. It has never measured anything with morality, valued rationality, or sought fairness or justice before the law. In the near future, when the CCP faces ultimate judgment, it will have no excuse for its behavior whatsoever.

When the CCP published those documents immediately preceding the mass arrests of practitioners, its sole purpose was to slander Falun Gong and create an environment in which to carry out its heinous deeds. In fact, the leader of the CCP, Jiang Zemin, had declared in April his intention to "eliminate Falun Gong" in a matter of three months.

C: Looking at the three main documents published by the CCP in the first days of the persecution, each had holes in its logic. The "Notice from the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party Forbidding Communist Party Members from Practicing Falun Gong" was an internal CCP document, and cannot be used to set general administrative policy. The Ministry of Civil Affairs' "Decision to Ban the Falun Gong Research Society" only had one relevant piece of jurisdiction in the matter, and that was its claim that the Falun Gong Research Society had not registered itself in accordance with regulations. Even if that were true, according to regulations governing the registration of social groups, not having registered does not amount to a group being illegal. The Ministry of Civil Affairs has no jurisdiction to ban a given group, much less ban the existence of 100 million Falun Gong practitioners and their actions. The "Notice of Six Prohibitions from the Ministry of Public Security" then illegally extended the scope of the Ministry of Civil Affairs' groundless decision. These two ministries can only publish regulations within their own departments, and has no legislative power. Thus, both documents well exceeded their jurisdiction. In addition, both documents were in direct violation of Article 36 and Article 5 of the Chinese Constitution:

  • Article 36: "Citizens of the People's Republic of China enjoy freedom of religious belief. No state organ, public organization or individual may compel citizens to believe in, or not believe in, any religion; nor may they discriminate against citizens who believe in, or do not believe in, any religion. The state protects normal religious activities. No one may make use of religion to engage in activities that disrupt public order, impair the health of citizens or interfere with the educational system of the state. Religious bodies and religious affairs are not subject to any foreign domination."

  • Article 5: "The People's Republic of China practices ruling the country in accordance with the law and building a socialist country of law. The state upholds the uniformity and dignity of the socialist legal system. No laws or administrative or local rules and regulations may contravene the Constitution. All state organs, the armed forces, all political parties and public organizations and all enterprises and institutions must abide by the Constitution and the law. All acts in violation of the Constitution and the law must be investigated. No organization or individual is privileged to be beyond the Constitution or the law."

D. Comments made by Jiang Zemin on October 25, 1999, to French newspaper Le Figaro and his editorial published in the October 27 edition of People's Daily do not amount to establishing Chinese law. However, an informed reader may have inferred that Jiang was referencing a legitimate law in those instances.

E. On October 30, 1999, the Chinese People's Congress Standing Committee ratified a "Decision to Ban, Safeguard Against, and Punish Cult Activities." However, it contradicted Article 36 of the Constitution and was also invalid. In addition, the document did not mention Falun Gong. Perhaps the drafters of the document still had doubts about such a decision in the context of conscience and heavenly law.

F. Further documents such as "Explanations from the Supreme Court and the Supreme People's Procuratorate Regarding the Application of Law in the Handling of Cases Involving Cult Organizations" Part 1 and Part 2 are similarly invalid and pass beyond their jurisdiction. Article 42 of Chinese Legislative Law states that clarifications regarding the appropriate execution of a given law can only be made by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress. The Supreme Court and the Supreme People's Procuratorate have no jurisdiction to interpret the law like it did and also violated Article 36 of the Constitution in the process. In addition, neither of these documents mentioned Falun Gong, either.

G. The aforementioned anti-cult documents are commonly used against Falun Gong in China. However, in 2005, a document issued by the Ministry of Public Security identified 14 religions as cults. This document went beyond the ministry's jurisdiction and also violated Article 36. Given all of that, the 14 religions referenced in the document still did not include Falun Gong.

Article 300 of the Chinese Criminal Code is the most commonly used way to charge Falun Gong practitioners with a crime. Article 300 establishes "using cult organizations to disrupt the implementation of law" as a crime, which, beyond again contradicting Article 36 of the Constitution, cannot be legitimately applied to Falun Gong even using any of the CCP's laws, regulations, or codes. In practice, the government organs that have tried to charge Falun Gong practitioners at the behest of the "610 Office" have never been able to legitimately accuse them of an actual crime. Even according to the Chinese Communist Party's own laws, the persecution of Falun Gong is illegal.

(To be continued)

Posting date: 7/19/2010

Category: Opinions


Leave a Comment