CHINA: Systematic psychiatric torture of Falun Gong practitioners in hospitals

Summary: Over 150 Chinese hospitals known to systematically use this torture against mentally and physically healthy Falun Gong practitioners in a State-sponsored clampdown to break their will.

[SAN DIEGO, 7 December 2011] - “One of the most inhuman and notorious torture methods used in China in the attempt to eradicate Falun Gong practitioners is psychiatric torture,” according to the [latest report] by the Falun Gong Human Rights Working Group (FGHRWG). The report 'China: Systematic Psychiatric Torture of Falun Gong practitioners in hospitals' documents over 150 Chinese hospitals known to systematically use this torture against mentally and physically healthy Falun Gong practitioners. 

“This form of torture is used routinely by staff of detention centres, labour camps and jails to coerce Falun Gong practitioners to give up their beliefs,” the report highlights.  

“These horrifying acts are also regularly occurring in modern, reputable hospitals, by or overseen by, professional and skilled staff who are trained to heal—not to hurt.” 

The overall outcomes of psychiatric torture, on 1,089 Falun Gong confirmed victims, often resulted in irreparable mental and physical states and even death. Many are reduced to insanity, a semi-comatose, “zombie,” lifeless state, or cannot walk, talk, or care for themselves, along with other mental and physical health problems not present prior to torture. 

This form of torture was once prevalent in communist Russia and created global outrage from psychiatric and mental healthcare fields in the 1980’s. Current evidence indicates these practices are even more widespread in China than the former Soviet Union. 

“This evidence is basically being ignored,” Dr. Shizhong Chen, spokesperson of FGHRWG, said. “In the past few years, 80 per cent of all reported persecution cases of Falun Gong practitioners in China that we have received included some form of psychiatric torture.” 

According to the report, in order to break the free will of the practitioners, “the Chinese authorities have conducted on Falun Gong practitioners extensive psychiatric torture, including a combination of forced ingestion or injection with massive amounts of psychiatric drugs, unknown drugs or toxic substances; undergoing a massive number of electroshock procedures (also known as electro-convulsive shock); or the use of electric needles at the temples to shock the brain and produce seizures." 

“The time is now not later to call attention to and to stop these atrocities,” Dr. Chen said. “We are asking concerned individuals, professional associations, agencies and organisations in the health fields, human rights organisations and world governments to get informed, take actions and issue sanctions." 

See the [attached] report for details on possible actions recommended by FGHRWG.



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