(Clearwisdom.net) On July 17, one thousand Falun Gong practitioners from all over the world held a rally at Upper Senate Park in Washington D.C., and called for an end of the persecution in China.

Falun Gong practitioners in yellow T-shirts held banners which read "Falun Dafa is good" "The world needs Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance" "End the persecution of Falun Gong" "Release all the jailed practitioners" and "Bring the murderers of persecution to justice."

At the rally, three U.S congressmen and several representatives from non-government organizations gave speeches. Two more congressmen sent the support letters condemning the brutal persecution. They pointed out that the persecution against Falun Gong is also the persecution against all the Chinese people. They condemned the assaults against Falun Gong in Flushing, New York, and suggested deporting the Chinese diplomats who are involved.


The rally

The rally

Rush Holt, Congressman from New Jersey

Dana Rohrabacher, Congressman

David Matas, human right lawyer from Canada

T. Kumar, representative from Amnesty International

William Murray, chair of Religious Freedom Coalition

Julibee Campaign USA�"�府�...�系�'��'�人Erin Weston

Wendy Wright, Chair of Concerned Women for America, said: "We cannot keep silent when people are being persecuted for their beliefs. We should expose the evil and help to stop the persecution."

Jim Geheran, from Initiatives for China said: "I admire you from the bottom of my heart. I admire your courage. Your tolerance beats the persecution and your benevolence wins over the hatred."

The persecution against Falun Gong started nine years ago. According to the Minghui/Clearwisdom website, 3164 Falun Gong practitioners have been persecuted to death during the last nine years, and thousands of practitioners are jailed and being tortured in labor camps, detention centers and prisons in China. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Congresswoman from Florida, expressed in her speech that the 610 Office in China, which was set up for persecution of Falun Gong, is an organization like the Nazi Gestapo or KGB in the former Soviet Union. She said: "It is horrifying to treat peaceful people this way."

Ms. Ros-Lehtinen condemned the brutal persecution. She pointed out that regarding the Beijing Olympics, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) broke their promise of improving the human rights situation in China. In fact, what the CCP has done is the opposite of their promise; the persecution against Falun Gong and other religious groups is worse now.

She pointed out that the CCP has even extended the persecution to New York, U.S.A. where Falun Gong practitioners in Flushing, New York are being assaulted. She mentioned that in a phone conversation, Peng Keyu, the Chinese general counselor in New York, admitted that he directed the assaults in Flushing. She suggested that the U.S. government should deport Chinese diplomats who organize and direct assaults against American citizens in the U.S.

Congressman Rush Holt said in his speech that Falun Gong practitioners standing under the sun is a symbol of exposing the evil persecution. He expressed that practitioners not only bring the principle of "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance" to their belief group, but also to the whole world. He expressed his appreciation to practitioners for clarifying the truth and bringing human rights to every corner of the world.

T. Kumar from Amnesty International listed the evidence of persecution. He mentioned the report by Manfred Nowak, the special rapporteur on Torture of United Nation, which showed that 2/3 of the persecution cases in China are the against Falun Gong and at least 50% of labor camp prisoners in China are Falun Gong practitioners.

Kumar expressed that Falun Gong practitioners are making a strong voice that the evil persecution should be stopped. He said that President Bush should bring up the persecution issue with the Chinese government.

David Matas, a famous human rights lawyer from Canada and co-author of the report of the CCP's harvesting organs from living Falun Gong practitioners, also gave a speech at the rally. He listed the evidence of the organ harvesting and called for the end of this crime against humanity.

Jim Geheran from Initiatives for China pointed out that the evidence of the persecution is not in doubt, and now the question is how much the public knows about it. He said no matter how hard the CCP tries to cover up the persecution and control the media, they cannot keep it from being exposed.

Geheran praised the practitioners for their courage. "The prisons cannot overcome your tolerance and hatred cannot overcome your benevolence. You have manifested your belief in 'Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.' And you have shown to the CCP that tyranny and terrorism will fail," he said, "I admire you from bottom of my heart. Your persistence in truth and compassion shows your courage."

Other speakers at the rally included Keith Roderick from Christian Solidarity International, Ann Delorey from the InterFaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington, Suzanne Scholte, the Chair of Defense Forum Foundation, Erin Weston from Jubilee Campaign USA, and Li Dayong and Jenny Liu from Global Service Center for Quitting the Party.