Falun Gong [practitioners] to file complaint following arrests in Paris

February 5, 2004

By Agence-France Presse

Paris, February 5th (AFP) – Members of the Buddhist inspired movement Falungong, arrested by the police during and after Chinese president Hu Jintao’s visit in Paris, will be filing a complaint at the Court on Monday, their lawyer Me Lef Forster announced on Thursday.

This complaint is being filed for “arbitrary arrests and illegal violence”, the lawyer explained.

According to Alain Tong, the spokesperson for the association in Paris, more than sixty practitioners that were arrested have expressed their intention to file this complaint.

On January 24th, Falungong followers had been refused the right to take part in the Chinese New Year Parade on the Champs Elysées.

Some, who were among the public, say that they were arrested “in a way that’s totally arbitrary”.

“Who made the decision at the Police Prefect Office? Did the Prefect Office receive orders from the government? Were the orders ill interpreted ? We do not know”, declared attorney Forster.

“There were only people who wore yellow scarves, who were peaceful and meditating”, he added.

“We were arrested and detained with handcuffs during five hours at the police station, simply because we had yellow scarves on. The police were rough when they arrested us”, said Yan Fullerton, a British Falun Gong practitioner.

“We did not think that this could happen outside of Mainland China. Especially not in France, the country where human rights originated”, she added.

“Falungong is notoriously and systematically presented as a cult whereas nothing can justify it”, explained Lef Forster.

Four members of the movement, forbidden in China, had filed another complaint on January 28th, for “crime of torture”, against the Chinese minister of Culture Sun Jiazheng when he visited Paris.