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Everything You Need to Know about Organ Harvesting in China
 
Adjust font size:   Close facts.org.cn  2016-08-12
 

On July 6, 2006, as requested by Falun Gong organizations, David Kilgour, who once served as Canadian Secretary of State for the Asia-Pacific region, and a human rights lawyer David Matas released the Report into Allegation of Organ Harvesting of Falun Gong Practitioners in China, claiming that China illegally removed living organs from a large number of Falun Gong practitioners. According to them, there was a concentration camp enclosed by a three-meter-high barbed wire entanglement in Sujiatun District of Shenyang City, Liaoning Province.    

However, through field visits and reasonable analysis, most of the world’s governments, political leaders, NGOs, human right groups, scholars and media proved that the allegation is groundless.    

1. Foreign Governments and Political Leaders 

US Department of State: Found No Evidence That the Site Is Being Used for Any Function Other Than as a Normal Public Hospital 

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In March 2006, the US diplomats visited the hospital 

On March 22, Douglas Kelly, visa officer of US Consulate General in Shenyang, made a thorough visit to the Sujiatun thrombus hospital, and expressed appreciation for the hospital's environment and medical condition. [1] 

On April 14, Consul General David Kombluth of US Consulate General in Shenyang, US Embassy official Eric Richardson, Health Attaché Dr. Graig Shapiro and two others paid a thorough three-and-a-half-hour visit to the hospital. On the same day, US Department of State released its report on the two investigations by US Embassy in Beijing and US Consulate General in Shenyang, stating that they "found no evidence that the site is being used for any function other than as a normal public hospital."[2]  

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Sean McCormack, Spokesman for US Department of State 

On April 16, the US Department of State’s Bureau of International Information Programs (IIP) released the Opinion of the US Department of State on China’s Falun Gong Issue, claiming, “U.S. representatives have found no evidence to support allegations that a site in northeast China has been used as a concentration camp to jail Falun Gong practitioners and harvest their organs, according to the U.S. Department of State,” and “Officers and staff from the U.S. embassy in Beijing and the U.S. consulate in Shenyang have visited the area and the specific site on two separate occasion. In these visits the officers were allowed to tour the entire facility and grounds and found no evidence that the site is being used for any function other than as a normal public hospital.”[3] 

Canadian Government: Most of the Source Material Comes from Anecdotal and Circumstantial Evidence 

An internal document from the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) issued in December 2010 shows the federal government was totally far from convinced by the Kilgour-Matas report. The unofficial assessment, prepared to brief DFAIT officials, dismantled the report's methodology and conclusions. The federal assessment contends, "The sources cited in this investigation as evidence to support the allegations are almost exclusively Falun Gong practitioners," and many of them provided second-or third-hand information. Neither Kilgour nor Matas was allowed to travel to China to research their report and most of the source material comes from "anecdotal and circumstantial evidence available primarily in Canada," the assessment says. [4] 

Australian Government: We have Not Seen Evidence That Proves That These Allegations Are True 

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Peter Baxter 

On May 28, 2007, the Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Standing Committee under the Parliament of Australia held a hearing on foreign affairs and trade. In this hearing, Peter Baxter, head of Australian Foreign Affairs and Trade Department’s North Asia said, “On the issue of allegations that organs were harvested from Falun Gong practitioners, it is the government’s position that we have not seen evidence that proves that these allegations are true. …None of the major international human rights groups have made a judgment that the accusations have been proven as yet. We studied the report very carefully and met with Mr. Kilgour when he was in Australia. As I said, we do not believe that the evidence provided in that report proved the allegations.” Rod Smith, a consul and head of the Division of Public Diplomatic and Parliament Affairs said, “The issue of receipt of organ transplants has not to our knowledge been a problem with Australians travelling to China.”[5]  

New Zealand Parliament: No Evidence Verifying the Falun Gong Claims on Organ Harvesting 

Two Canadians David Kilgour and David Matas published their Report into Allegation of Organ Harvesting of Falun Gong Practitioners in China in 2006. As a response, the New Zealand government conducted investigations and came to a conclusion. But Falun Gong took every method to organize lobby, signature and petition.  

On November 21, 2013, the Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Committee submitted a report to the Parliament of New Zealand, claiming, “The committee has considered the petition of the Falun Gong Association Incorporated, requesting that the House make it illegal for New Zealand citizens and permanent residents to receive an organ overseas that has been trafficked or illegally harvested. Neither committee members nor the Government are aware of any independent evidence verifying the Falun Gong claims on organ harvesting. This conclusion is based on both New Zealand and foreign inquiries. ” [6] 

Head of the German-Chinese Parliamentary Group Johannes Pflug: Rumor about Live Organ Harvesting Were Spread by Falun Gong 

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Johannes Pflug, the head of the German-Chinese Parliamentary Group  

Johannes Pflug is a member of social democratic party and a member of Committee for Foreign Affairs under German Federal Parliament. His policy researches focus on Asian countries. Since 2005, he had been the head of the German-Chinese Parliamentary Group.  

On November 9, 2012, Johannes Pflug said in an interview by a journalist for SWR that the accusation about that China executed political offenders to harvest their organs was a groundless rumor. Johannes Pflug said, “I think that was a groundless rumor. I had heard such rumors a few years ago. We had carried out corresponding investigations through our intelligence agencies. Our intelligence staff told me that we had not found evidence confirming such things despite the repeated emergence of such reports. I can be more specific to say that most of such rumors were spread by Falun Gong, but the rumors were entirely groundless.”[7]  

 


[1] Davids' Report Reexamined, by Social Watch, Phoenix TV, June 28, 2007 

[2] Harry Wu: My Knowledge and Experience with the Falun Gong Media Reporting on the Sujiatun Concentration Camp Problem, Observation, July 18, 2006 

[3] Opinion of the US Department of State on Chinas Falun Gong Issue, IIP, April 16, 2006 

[4] Doubts Cast on Organ Harvest Claims, Ottawa Citizens, Glen McGregor, August 9, 2007  

[5] The Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Standing Committee under the Parliament of Australia Held Hearing, Aph.gov.au, May 28, 2007 

[6] Report of the Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Committee about Petition 2011/84 of Sam Fang on behalf of the Falun Gong Association Incorporated, website of New Zealand Parliament, November 21, 2013 

[7] Democracy Is Possible in China, the Voice of Germany, November 9, 2012 

 

2. Human Rights Organizations and International Scholars 

Amnesty International: Some Telephone Interviews Chinese Hospitals Had Been Edited 

On October 30, 2008, the feature report Malaise dans le Chinatown was broadcast in the Télévision de Radio-Canada. In this program, Amnesty International spokesperson Anne Ste. Marie said, “We spent several months trying to find local human right activists and journalists to verify the news. However, we finally reached the conclusion that the numbers are unverifiable.” On January 27, 2009, Radio-Canada published on its website the result of investigation into the feature report “Malaise dans le Chinatown”. The investigation showed that Amnesty International investigated the issue in China and was unable to confirm the Falun Gong movement's allegations of organ harvesting. In an unaired portion of the interview, Amnesty International spokesperson Anne Ste. Marie even said that some telephone interviews in Chinese hospitals had been edited.[1]  

OrgaNOs: Allegation of Live Organ Harvesting Unverifiable 

OrgaNOs is a global volunteer organization dedicated to publicize laws and regulations on organ donation and to disclose the secret darkness in organ donation.  

OrgaNOs has asked Amnesty International Austria Branch to verify the allegation of “live organ harvesting”. On March 18, 2014, OrgaNOs published on its website an article, which claimed that Falun Gong’s allegation was unverifiable. OrgaNOs said in the article, “For a long period of time, there has been a rumor about China’s cruelty to Falun Gong practitioners. The rumor claimed that China extracted organ from living Falun Gong practitioners in the prisons... OrgaNOs seeks to verify such allegations. Therefore, we directly contacted Amnesty International, which said that the allegations have not yet been verified.” [2] 

Australian Refugee Review Tribunal: Allegations Made by the Report Remain Unproven and Unsupported 

On January 17, 2007, Australian Refugee Review Tribunal Country Research Section gave its response to Kilgour-Matas report. The response listed in detail the attitudes of the US Department of State, Harry Wu and other international organizations as well as experts toward Kilgour-Matas report. The CR Section emphasized, “No conclusive evidence has been located to either prove or disprove the allegations made by the report...No major human rights commentator has fully supported its conclusions about the killing and taking of organs from live unwilling Falun Gong prisoners. At the current stage the allegations made by the report remain unproven and unsupported.” [3]  

Harry Wu: Head of the Washington-based Laogai Research Foundation: Falun Gong Needs to Provide Evidence 

Harry Wu, a Chinese dissident, head of the Washington-based Laogai Research Foundation, has been investigating the use of organs from executed prisoners for transplanting operation. He has spent 19 years in China’s Laogai (Reform-through-Labor) prison.  

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Harry Wu 

From March 12, 2006, Harry Wu arranged for people inside China to visit the Sujiatun scene. During the following three weeks, the investigators canvassed the entire Sujiatun area, including two military barracks, the Chinese medical blood clotting treatment center and Kongjiashan prison. On March 22, 2006, Harry Wu wrote a letter to 20 or so people who were either US Congress Representatives or media people. On July 18, 2006, he published the article My knowledge and Experience with the Falun Gong Media Reporting on the Sujiatun Concentration Camp Problem, making clear his attitude toward this affair. He thought the so-called Sujiatun Concentration Camp did not exist.  

Later on, Harry Wu received interviews with overseas media, casting doubts on Falun Gong’s allegation of China’s living organ harvesting.  

David Ownby, Canadian Professor in History: Falun Gong Is Ruining Its Reputation 

David Ownby, associate professor of history in the University of Montreal, is an expert in China’s modern history, chief of East Asia Research Center, a recognized expert on Falun Gong. He is fairly sympathetic to Falun Gong, and wrote a book entitled Falun Gong the Future of China.  

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David Ownby receiving interview with Télévision de Radio-Canada 

On October 30, 2008, the feature report Malaise dans le Chinatown, was broadcast by the Télévision de Radio-Canada. In this program, Professor David Ownby said, “I read [Mr. Kilgour's] report carefully…Organ harvesting is happening in China, but I see no evidence proving it is aimed particularly at Falun Gong practitioners.” [4] 

Senior American Surgeon Kenneth Mattox: Photographs Can Be Deceiving 

Kenneth Mattox, a senior American surgeon, wrote the books Top Knife: The Art and Craft of Trauma Surgery and Trauma.  

In September 2007, Mr. Rambodoc, a surgeon in India, queried the authenticity of photos publicized by Falun Gong. Mattox answered: "Photographs can be deceiving. While some of the apparent injuries and conditions might have been caused by torture, it appears that some of the photographs are from conditions which are sometimes seen in a hospital. The photographs could have been from rigor mortis in a dead body, advanced cirrhosis of the liver, portal hypertension, advanced necrotic breast cancer, donor site for a skin graft, routine acute electrical and thermal burns, and sacral decubitus ulcer." [5] 

Famous German Anatomist Gunther von Hagens: None of the Exhibited Human Bodies Was from China 

Gunther von Hagens is a famous German anatomist. He has worked as an anatomist at the University of Heidelberg since 1978. He founded the Institute of Plastination under the University of Heidelberg in 1993. 

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German anatomist Gunther von Hagens 

In July 2003, Gunther von Hagens held a press conference as a response to doubts of Falun Gong organization over the exhibition of human bodies. He claimed that all of the human bodies were remains of donors. He added that these donors had clearly expressed their willing to donate their remains to public education projects of health and anatomy. “Since the human body donation project was established by the Institute of Plastination in Heidelberg in 1982, more than 13, 000 people had registered to donate their remains. Most of these people came from Germany and the US, while none was from China.” [6] 

Ukrainian Experts: Two Davids Gained Both Fame and Wealth from Rumor about Live Organ Harvesting 

Vladimir Petukhov, Ukrainian human rights activist, top-tier psychologist, chairman of non-governmental organization “Saving Family and Individual”; Valery, chairman of Ukrainian social organization “Heresy and Society” and president of Kultam.net. 

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Valery Vladimir Petukhov 

On December 13, 2007, Vladimir Petukhov and Valery paid a field visit to Sujiatun, from which they reached the same conclusion as the US diplomats and Chinese and foreign media did.  

Valery released a commentary on April 3, 2009 on the Kultam.net, claiming, “Falun Gong first published information about organ harvesting, and then used violation of cremation regulations as circumstantial evidence to verify the information...They have travelled to 30 countries but did not pay for the trip; they sold their book to these 30 countries. Hence they gained both fame and wealth.” [7] 


[1] Investigative Report into Malaise dans le Chinatown, website of Radio-Canada, January 27, 2009 

[2] China: Innocent Falun Gong Practitioner Killed for Organs? OrgaNOs website, March 18, 2014 

[3] Response of CR about Whether Prove or Disprove Allegations Made by Davids Report, Refworld.org, January 17, 2007 

[4] Report of Review into Complaint Filed by the Falun Dafa Association of Canada Regarding the Investigative Report Entitled Malaise dans le Chinatown, Broadcast on October 30, 2008, on Télévision de Radio-Canada, Radio-canada.ca, January 27, 2009 

[5] Is Falun Gong Going Wrong? Wordpress.com, Rambodoc, September 17, 2007 

[6] Falun Gong Asks for DNA Test of Exhibited Bodies, Radio Vienna, Austria, July 12, 2013 

[7] Information Releasedhttp://kultam.net/rus/news/article-159 

  

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