China Discriminates Against Canadian Falun Gong Contestant

I come here today with yet another example of China's egregious disregard for the most basic of human rights--the right to live freely.

After the Falun Gong's rise in popularity in the 1990s, the Chinese Government perceived this peaceful group as a threat. Over the years, Falun Gong followers in China have been imprisoned, tortured, and killed. In fact, there are more Falun Gong practitioners in prison in China than any other persecuted group.

Last month China hit a new low in its attempt to silence the Falun Gong community. Anastasia Lin is a Falun Gong practitioner who also happens to be Miss World Canada. The Miss World competition is held this year in China but Miss Canada can't go. Why? Because China refused to give her a visa. She was given no explanation why. However, the motive is clear. Beijing does not like how outspoken Ms. Lin has been about China's human rights abuses and religious oppression.

Anastasia Lin moved from China to Canada when she was 13 years old. Yet she has not stopped fighting for the rights of her fellow members of the Falun Gong community. During a congressional hearing in July, Ms. Lin told Members that tens of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners have been killed so their organs could be harvested and sold for transplants. Clearly, Beijing's only concern is remaining in power, not the welfare of the Chinese people.

Last week, on the 65th annual International Human Rights Day, I gave another speech demanding Beijing put a stop to this atrocious practice of harvesting organs from prisoners of conscience. It is high time China ends its illegal subjugation of Falun Gong practitioners. Justice must be served.

Unfortunately, Anastasia Lin is an innocent victim of the Chinese Government's attempts to persecute the Falun Gong. It just goes to show how obsessed the Chinese Government is about persecuting the Falun Gong. Beijing is now censoring beauty pageants. But the courageous men and women of the Falun Gong community will not be silenced by Beijing's abuse--beauty pageant or no beauty pageant.

And that's just the way it is.


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