Weathering the Storm, Chapter 3 of Part Three

Zhong Fangqiong

PureInsight | October 25, 2004


Part III. Detained Eleven Times

Coming Through the Ordeals of Repeated Detention and Torture

Chapter 3: Going Back to Beijing to Appeal for Falun Gong Again

Getting around layers of police blockade

At 7 AM next morning (March 3rd), I went to a friend's house to get some money and prepare to go back to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong again. When I returned home, my Mom told me: "Some people from the police station and the Chengdu City Liaison's Office came looking for you around 9 AM. They rang the doorbell and called out your name, but I didn't open the door." I ate a quick lunch and immediately set out for Beijing.

The local officials had set up many layers of police blockade trying to prevent Falun Gong practitioners from reaching Beijing. In order to get around the police blockade, I took the long way to get to Beijing. I first took a bus to Chongqing City. Once I arrived at Chongqing, I took a boat to Wuhan City. From there, I took a train to Beijing. When the bus arrived in Chongqing, I heard on the radio that the Chinese National People's Congress and the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference would start their annual meetings in Beijing at 3:30 PM that same afternoon. My heart began to beat faster as I wanted to reach Beijing as quickly as possible so I could make my appeal for Falun Gong. But unfortunately only after I boarded my boat to Wuhan City did I realize that I had gotten on a sightseeing cruiser, which traveled very slowly and made frequent stops. It took a long four days and nights before it finally arrived in Wuhan on the morning of the 7th.

Once I arrived in Wuhan, I rushed to the local train station. I purchased a ticket for the next train going to Beijing, which happened to be an air-conditioned express sleeper train that was scheduled to leave at 1 PM. When it was time to board the train, the passengers were divided into two lines for check-in. I stood in the middle of the line on the right. Suddenly two plainclothes policemen showed up. They asked each passenger one by one, "Are you a Falun Gong practitioner?" I became very concerned and I said silently in my heart, "I must not be stopped here no matter what. Master Li, please help me! I have to get to the Appeals Office in Beijing." The policemen went through the passengers very quickly. Everyone was shaking their heads saying that they weren't Falun Gong practitioners. The policemen came closer and closer to me. I became very worried and didn't know what to do. At that critical moment, the train conductor began to check the passengers in. I tried my very best to push forward so I could hand my ticket to the train conductor and get on the train.

Breaking through more layers of blockade

I arrived at Beijing's West Train Station at 5 AM on March 8th, 2000. The Chinese National People's Congress and the People's Political Consultative Conference were holding their annual meetings in Beijing. It was supposed to be the time when the Chinese people could speak their minds to the Chinese government. The Chinese Constitution states clearly that Chinese Citizens have the freedom of belief and freedom to file appeals with the government. Yet the regime of the Chinese dictator Jiang Zemin had violated the law and employed every method possible to prevent Falun Gong practitioners from speaking up and filing their legal appeals for Falun Gong.

When I arrived in Beijing, the weather was very cold. At first, I wanted to wait inside the waiting hall of the train station until 7 AM when the weather warmed up a bit. But then it occurred to me that there were too many plainclothes policemen at the train station and it was not safe for me to stay there. I felt that I would regret it for the rest of my life if I weren't able to make an appeal for Falun Gong. So I decided to leave the train station. I spent the next couple of hours wandering around on the street in the cold wind and waiting for the Appeals Office to open its door.

I wanted to present a good image of a Falun Gong practitioner to people. So after I had breakfast, I put on some makeup and jewelry. Then I took a bus toward the general direction of Tiananmen Square. On the way there, I asked people on the bus how I could get to Tiananmen Square once I got off the bus. Everyone told met that Tiananmen Square was closed to visitors because the Chinese National People's Congress and the People's Political Consultative Conference were holding their meetings in a building on the square. So I got off the bus. I hailed a three-wheeled pedicab, and asked to be taken to the Appeals Office. On our way there, the elderly peddler asked me with a concern in his voice: "Miss, are you going to the Appeals Office in connection with a lawsuit? During this period if time when the two major meetings are taking place, it will not be easy to get inside the Appeals Office. But if you can manage to get in, I am sure you will get a favorable ruling."

The elderly peddler followed the slow traffic lane and we arrived at the entrance to the Appeal's Office. He clearly knew what he was doing. Instead of stopping right in front of the office, he passed the office, turned around, and went against the traffic on the opposite side of the road. He stopped at about two hundred meters from the Appeals Office and said to me: "Miss, have you prepared your written complaint? Look at that spot over there where there are a lot of people! Follow the narrow lane next to the crowd and it will lead you to the Appeals Office. Take care of yourself!"

As I went toward the narrow lane, I saw that numerous police vehicles from various regions of the nation were parked nearby. I walked toward the narrow lane without any hesitation. At the entrance of the narrow lane were many plainclothes police officers and Dafa practitioners who had been stopped from going inside the Appeals Office. I held my breath, and dared not do anything that might cause suspicion. With difficulty, I squeezed my way past the huge crowd, and entered the long lane leading to the Appeals Office. To my surprise, there were even plainclothes police officers patrolling in groups of three and five along the lane. I looked straight ahead even though I was a little nervous. I said silently in my heart, "Master Li, please help me get into the Appeals Office."

Appeals Office Turned Into the Public Security Department

I finally managed to make it through the numerous blockades and entered the Appeals Office. But there was a notice on the door stipulating that to obtain the necessary form to file an appeal one must provide a valid ID card. People at the Chengdu City's Liaison Office to Beijing had confiscated my ID when I was arrested in Beijing the first time. Without my identification card, how could I obtain the form? I had a sudden inspiration. There were two middle-aged persons seated beside me and I asked them: "Sirs, could you please get a form for me?" One of them said: "We have come from afar to appeal for ourselves for the fifth time, and we are not in the mood to do anything for you." I replied: "I will pay you for that." When he heard that, the other person said, "Let me try!" He came back with a form. I secretly took out all the money I had left in my pocket (about 80 Yuan) and gave to him in exchange for the form. Having obtained the form, I began to carefully fill out the form. In the form, I said that I came to appeal for the unjust treatment of Falun Dafa, and that I had benefited both in body and spirit from the practice. I also brought up my previous unlawful detention in Beijing. I asked the government to clear the name of Dafa, clear the name of Master Li, permit the sales of Dafa books, provide us with a lawful environment to practice, and unconditionally release all the detained Dafa practitioners.

There were still many plainclothes police officers walking back and forth in the Appeals Office so I folded over the part that I had filled out. When my form was half filled, the plainclothes police officers discovered that a young man who was filing an appeal inside the office was a Falun Gong practitioner and arrested him. Then they found a young lady who was filing an appeal was also a Falun Gong practitioner and arrested her too. The atmosphere around the office became very tense.

I ignored what was happening around me and continued to fill out the form. The plainclothes officers came up to me and asked me: "Where are you from?" I replied: "In any case, not from where you are from!" I continued writing. At that moment, a fiendish looking police officer came towards me. It appeared that he worked for the Appeals Office. He caught hold of my collar and dragged me off the chair. He used so much force that I almost tumbled to the floor. He pushed me to an area outside and I saw that there were more than ten Dafa practitioners there already. They were forced to sit on the ground in a line with their legs apart. One police officer asked the lady who had just been arrested where she was from. She said: "From the XX police station in Beijing." The police officer said, "Why did you not tell me that earlier? The officer supervising that section of the district was my classmate. It does not matter now. The form you filled out had been entered into the database! My classmate will be in as much trouble as you are in." It turns out that if a Falun Gong practitioner was arrested for filing an appeal for Falun Gong during the time that the two major political meetings were taking place in Beijing, the police officers in his or her area would be punished by the Jiang regime as well.

We asked the policemen to let us complete the forms that we were filling out. Finally, one policeman agreed to let us do that. I completed my form and handed it in. After that, each practitioner was brought back to the liaison office of his respective province in Beijing.

Jiang's regime punishing the policemen in my district

I was sent to Chengdu City's Liaison Office to Beijing. Once I arrived there, the director of the office with the surname of Shi once again asked a woman to strip off my clothes and search me. They then contacted Wei Daping, a policeman from Wannianchang Police Station in Chengdu as well as the director of the Liaison Office with the surname of Huang, and a staff member with the surname of Huang as well. The three of them soon arrived. It turns out that they had been looking for me in Beijing for over a week. They knew that they would be punished by the government if I was arrested in Beijing for making an appeal for Falun Gong and were trying to stop me first. As soon as they saw me, the younger Huang said angrily, "I really want to pound you into a pile of meat paste!" He then said, "You make me so angry! Your younger brother paid 3000 yuan guaranteeing that you wouldn't go to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong any more. But we found that you had left the second day after he brought you back home. We immediately purchased three plane tickets to Beijing. We first tried to intercept you at the West Train Station in Beijing. We met every single train from Chengdu to Beijing even if it arrived at midnight. Each time we stood at the station exit and looked at each passenger carefully. We have put so much strain on our eyes that they have become swollen. But we didn't see you. After three days of that, we finally decided to give up the idea of intercepting you at the train station. So we called the director of Beijing Liaison office, Mr. Feng, and asked him to inform us if he heard anything about you. Director Huang and I then searched for you at Tiananmen Square from early morning to late night everyday. The weather is so cold, and the wind is so strong. Both of us have big blisters on our feet! As for Wei Daping, he stood in front of the entrance to the Appeals Office everyday waiting for you. After several more days, Director Huang and I were ready to give up. We wanted to go home and wait for our punishment. But Wei Daping still didn't want to give up. He wanted to continue the search. We didn't even take the time to eat because we were afraid we would miss you. We are so exhausted. Director Huang has suffered a relapse of a disease that he used to suffer from. I've caught cold. Even Wei Daping, a young man in excellent health, has lost a great deal of weight. Once you go back, I am sure his wife will be looking for you and retaliate against you!" I told them, "Every Chinese citizen has the right to file an appeal. Why would you try to stop me from doing that?"

Wei Daping then asked me, "Zhong Fangqiong, how did you get into the Appeals Office?" I told him, "I walked down the narrow lane and got to the office." He said: "I don't believe you. I stood at the entrance of the lane today. I didn't even dare to blink my eyes. It's impossible that you would be able to walk by me! I am sure that either a car took you directly inside or you got in through the back door." I said, "Does the Appeals Office open have a back door? I don't know about any black door. I wasn't taken directly inside by a car either."

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