KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia—A global torch relay to highlight the Chinese regime's worsening human rights abuses prior to the Beijing Olympics was successfully held in Malaysia's capital on Sunday morning, May 25.
NGO's, human rights activists, persecuted groups and concerned supporters rallied on Tasik Perdana (Lake Garden) to receive the ceremonial arrival of the Global Human Rights Torch Relay (HRTR).
Initiated by the Coalition to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong (CIPFG), the HRTR is a global grassroots campaign to press for an end to human rights atrocities in China before the Olympics in August.
The HRTR in Kuala Lumpur attracted the attention of many local and international media. Participants at the rally were wearing HRTR T-shirts and holding signs calling on the Chinese regime to stop abuses against its own people, who include Falun Gong practitioners, journalists, lawyers, democracy and human rights advocates and other groups.
The relay "highlights the persecution of Falun Gong, the most severely persecuted group in China today, the plight of Tibetans, Christians, democracy activists, outspoken lawyers and reporters, as well as the fueling of oppression and slaughter in Darfur, Burma, Zimbabwe and North Korea," said the Malaysia event's news release.
The morning event began with the introduction of the HRTR event, followed by a one minute silent prayer session for the SiChuan earthquake victims and speeches by invited speakers.
The organizer arranged the sacred official torch receiving ceremony. Three beautiful Goddesses of the Human Rights Torch lit the torch and slowly moved towards the place where the participants were sitting. A continuous round of applause were given to the Goddesses of Human Rights Torch by the crowd.
The Goddesses passed the torch to Mr. Roger Chan, representative of Human Rights Committee of Bar Council, to conclude the official torch receiving ceremony. The torches drew big attention from the media. A large group of photographers surrounded the torch bearers for 5 minutes of photo shootings.
"I feel very proud to join the HRTR event today. I think it is a very sacred activity with a sacred objective, which is to save the lives who are persecuted by the Chinese regime," said Mr. N. Surendran, representative of CIPFG and ambassador of the HRTR event.
"It is not just for Falun Gong, but also other persecuted and dissident groups, like Tibetan people and so on. I am very happy that this event can be successfully held. I believe this event will focus world attention on what the Chinese government is doing,
"The Communist regime is putting pressure to the world to stop democratic expression of protests against the Olympic torch. I think it is a shameful act by the International Olympics Committee to have ever awarded the Olympic to the Chinese regime,
"I think all countries should boycott the Beijing Olympics. I think its absolute nonsense to say that sports should not be mixed up with politics. This kind of statement is addressed by people who are sitting comfortably in their air-conditioned offices, and who are not being murdered and oppressed by the Chinese regime. This is not about politics or sport; this is about stopping people from being murdered," concluded Surendran.
During the event, the organizer thanked the Friends of Tibet who promised to join the HRTR event before getting direction from Dalai Lama to stop participating in rallies until June. Despite the absence of Friends of Tibet, the organizer specially mentioned about the plight of Tibetans, who are facing religious and cultural persecution by the Communist Party. CIPFG strongly condemned the killings of Tibetans committed by the CCP and requested the release of monks and nuns in custody.
Mr. Roger Chan, representative of the Human Rights Committee of Bar Council, was one of the invited speakers of the event.
"This morning I come here to support the torch of humanity. The purpose of this torch run is to raise awareness on various problems. The serious problem here is the allegation of living organ harvesting of Falun Gong practitioners. Once we came to allegations about human lives, we have to be very serious about it. We need to ensure all these problems are looked into," said Mr. Chan.
"Today we are not here for just a simple gathering, or to go against China. We are here to support humanity and to expose the problem of live organ harvesting,
"I would say that this is a very good event to create awareness. We believe the Olympics cannot go hand in hand with the atrocities committed against humanity. The Chinese regime should stop all forms of organ harvesting immediately and should open the organ transplant records for survey by independent human rights organizations, like the United Nations or Amnesty International," said Mr. Chan.
Liu Xiao Jia, a SEGI College student from China, has lost the financial support and love from her parents after they were kidnapped by the CCP police on March 25, 2008. Her parents were kidnapped because of their belief in Falun Gong. According to Liu, the CCP started mass arrests of Falun Gong practitioners ahead of the Beijing Olympic to ensure a 'peaceful' sport event. She hopes the righteous people of the world can help save her parents and all Falun Gong practitioners in China.
Mr. Phang, a Human Rights Torch supporter and contractor said, "I am very happy to join the HRTR event today in Malaysia. I hope this torch will continue its passing, to show the acts of righteous. This is also an alarming wake up call to overseas Chinese race, and a chance to think and to recognize the atrocities committed by the Chinese Communist regime for the past 50 years."
Another participant of HRTR event, Mr. Lim, is a lieutenant of RELA (Volunteer Corps.) He said, "The Human Rights Torch symbolizes humanity. Human rights belong to all races. I am sad to know about the persecution of Falun Gong. I am not here to oppose any government but only to talk about facts from a human rights perspective. I hope all people can support the Human Rights Torch, passing it to whole Malaysia and the world."
The HRTR demands Chinese Communist Party to release all prisoners of conscience, "hundreds of thousands of them," and to stop its support of corrupt regimes in Burma and Sudan.
Beginning in Athens last August, the HRTR has since visited an estimated 150 cities in about 40 countries on five continents. The torch was traveling from Canada to Kuala Lumpur. The next stop of the HRTR is Taiwan. For more information, please visit www.humanrightstorch.org.