For many years, ISHR Sweden has been engaged in the Almedalen Week, a yearly meeting-point for politicians and Non-governmental Organizations on the island of Gotland in Sweden. 2022 is the year of the General Election in Sweden and all the main political parties were there in July 2022. There was a great interest in China issues. The focus of ISHR Sweden’s approach was that Organ Harvesting Crime in China has to stop. ISHR Sweden arranged demonstrations with Swedish Members of Parliament as speakers and arranged public seminars based on the belief that knowledge creates change. Furthermore, ISHR Sweden talked to politicians, government members, and the media.
Forced Organ Harvesting was first exposed in 2006 by two Canadian Human Rights fighters, David Matas and David Kilgour, in their investigation and report called „Bloody Harvest – the killing of Falun Gong for their organs“. Matas and Kilgour call this crime “an unprecedented evil on this planet”. Falun Gong is a traditional meditation and spiritual practice that started in China in the early 1990s and has been persecuted in China since 1999 due to the number of practitioners becoming larger than the Communist Party members. 16 years have passed since this crime was exposed. What has happened since then?
An update on the situation can be found in the final judgement of the China Tribunal which suggests that there are no signs showing the crime is less scaled. Furthermore, more groups are targeted now, including Uyghurs, Tibetan Buddhists, and House Church Christians. Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, who led the prosecution of Serbian war criminal Slobodan Milosevic at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, served as the China Tribunal’s chairman. The tribunal stated that the situation is alarming. Watch the statement to the UN.
Great Britain is an excellent example to follow. The country was urged by the China Tribunal in London to make travel to China for organs more difficult. In the meantime, Great Britain has passed a law that says only UK donations can be used for UK transplants. ISHR Sweden thus asked the Swedish Government to do the same.
Already one week before Almedalen Week ISHR Sweden informed Swedish Parliament members about a recent conference at the Brussels Press Club that had dealt with the same topic. SMER is the Swedish National Council on Medical Ethics with whom ISHR Sweden had contact years back. During Almedalen Week 2022, ISHR Sweden met with Mr Sven-Eric Söder, the Chairman of SMER, and with Mrs Lotta Eriksson, the head of the Secretariat. ISHR Sweden gave them information about Organ Harvesting in China and the new EU resolution. ISHR Sweden urged the Swedish Government to act. Its requests are supported by several Swedish Members of Parliament. Two of them came to the demonstrations to talk (Videos in Swedish): Mrs Ann-Sofie Alm and Mrs Lotta Johnsson Fornarve.
ISHR Sweden had also invited Mr Manyan Ng from the German section of ISHR to Almedalen, who talked during the demonstrations and gave deeper and broader insights on China and the CCP system behind the human rights violations. On the 5th of July, ISHR Sweden arranged a seminar at the local Gotland Campus of the University of Uppsala, where Mr Ng talked about “China’s three magical weapons threatening peace and democracy in the world”. The interest in the seminar was high. Mr. Ng was later interviewed by the internet TV channel SWEBBTV and discussed Organ Harvesting Crime in China. Mr Ng also joined a live discussion on Facebook about China´s global ambition, Ukraine and Taiwan with a Swedish journalist, Jojje Olsson, who runs a China-focused news site.
ISHR Sweden supports other NGOs’ work regarding Forced Organ Harvesting in China. During the Almedalen Week, ISHR Sweden held demonstrations together with a Falun Gong group and informed politicians and other NGOs about a new Universal Declaration on Combating and Preventing Forced Organ Harvesting to build a broader collaboration and stronger support to stop Human Rights violations and persecution of spiritual groups in China.
For more information about this issue, please watch the seminar (in English) that ISHR Sweden co-organized together with the EDELSTAM FOUNDATION and seven other NGOs in 2019. Many interesting speakers talked including an investigative journalist, witnesses from different persecuted groups, and also a cancer doctor who carried out organ harvesting earlier in China. The seminar can be watched on Youtube: Part 1 and Part 2.
Yi Zhang, ISHR Sweden