Hamburg, Germany: Falun Gong Practitioners Commemorate the April 25 Appeal (Photos)
(Minghui.org) On April 25, 1999, 14 years ago, more than 10,000 Falun Gong practitioners in Mainland China went to the State Council Appeals Office close to Zhongnanhai, the central government compound in Beijing, to stage a peaceful appeal. Their goal? To petition for their basic right of freedom of belief.
On April 25 and 27, 2013, Falun Gong practitioners in Hamburg, Germany held an Information Day, to commemorate the anniversary of practitioners standing up for Falun Gong. This event was also to further clarify the facts about Falun Gong to the local people, and to expose the evil nature of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) that brutally persecutes innocent people.
In Hamburg's city center, people sign a petition calling for an end to the persecution in China
Passers-by stop to learn more about Falun Gong
On a popular shopping street in Hamburg's city center by Alster Lake, Falun Gong practitioners hung up banners commemorating the April 25 peaceful appeal. There were also banners introducing Falun Dafa and exposing the persecution of Falun Gong and the CCP's forced organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners.
The practitioners demonstrated the Falun Gong exercises and staged a torture re-enactment, to help people understand more about the brutalities taking place in China. They distributed leaflets with additional information. The practitioners' event was a call to conscience and justice to the people of the free city of Hamburg.
Many people came over to sign the petition calling for an end to the persecution.
An elegantly dressed older German lady passed by the site and saw the practitioners' banners and display boards. When a practitioner handed her a leaflet, with sympathy and understanding, the German woman's voice trembled, “I know, I’ve seen these; I don’t know what to say. It’s horrible, so sad.” She paused, as though she did not quite know how to express it. She gently held the practitioner’s hand for a while, with her eyes full of support, then left quietly.
Two middle-aged ladies passed by and stopped to take a look. One of them listened to the audio recording which detailed the persecution of Falun Gong in China, while the other carefully looked at all the materials on display. They both showed great concern.
After learning more about Falun Gong and the persecution, they said nothing, but took out some money to make a donation in support. However, they were kindly told that Falun Gong practitioners don't take any donations. Without hesitation, they then went straight to the front stand and signed the petition calling to stop the persecution.
Afterward the women spoke to the practitioners for a long time. They expressed their views that although they knew something about what the former East Germany had done, but they didn’t realize that the CCP is far worse than that. It is very difficult to imagine just how brutal the CCP is, with its forced organ harvesting and torture of innocent people.
Later in the afternoon, more and more people appeared on the street on their way home from work. Gentlemen in suits and well-dressed ladies passed by the practitioners' stand. Most stopped, attentively listened to the facts about the persecution and then took leaflets.
One woman said to a practitioner that seeing good people being persecuted made her deeply sympathetic and very sad. During the conversation, her face flushed slightly with emotion. She also expressed her desire to learn about Falun Gong and cultivation practice.
Four young Chinese people passed by the exhibition table, and were surprised to see practitioner’s banners. A practitioner spoke to one of them about the forced organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners. One of them appeared to be in shock as he listened to an audio recording about the persecution and read the banner about organ harvesting. The practitioner also explained to him what Falun Dafa is and why the CCP persecutes the practice. He mentioned that the CCP doesn’t represent China, and that Falun Gong practitioners are not against China but only expose the CCP’s crimes, including organ harvesting which is a crime against humanity. The young man listened very carefully and said, “Fortunately I didn’t join the CCP.”
A middle-aged couple came to the exhibiting table and listened intently to practitioners explain the facts about Falun Gong and the persecution. They hesitated to sign the petition and said that they’d make a decision after they read the leaflets. But within two minutes, the couple came back and signed the petition determinedly.
There was another young couple who came over to learn about Dafa. When they heard that there is a free exercise workshop every Sunday, the young man excitedly said that he was going to attend. Many Westerners have shown interest in Falun Gong soon after learning about it.
A man in his 40s expressed great interest in Falun Gong after hearing about the persecution and the organ harvesting. He said, “What you are doing here is great. Thank you!”
A young Vietnamese man showed a great deal of interest in Falun Gong. He picked up some materials and asked about Falun Gong’s healing and fitness efficacy. He said to the practitioner, “My family heard that Falun Gong is very beneficial to one's health and they suggested I practice it. I want to learn as well. When do you practice together? I'll join you.” He also said, “I really empathize with the Chinese people; it’s not easy to mentally break free from the CCP's system of indoctrination.”
A young man in his early twenties walked straight up to the exhibition table and signed the petition without a word. After he was greeted by a practitioner, he started talking, “Yes, I’ve heard about organ harvesting. It’s horrible. It’s great to tell people what’s happening, to let people be aware. I just passed by here and saw the torture re-enactment, and I was suddenly awoken. What's happening in China is really frightening.”
A practitioner then relayed the crimes that the CCP has committed over the last 45 years. The young man listened intently and finally asked, “How can I learn more about it?” The practitioner recommended that he read the book, Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party or watch the video online. He also told him sincerely, “There are some pictures that might be rather disturbing.” The young man replied, “It doesn’t matter. People must know the true history of the past and present.”
An elderly couple stood in front of the practitioners who were demonstrating the exercises. The woman said, “Look, this young girl is so focused.” The gentleman said he believed that people would benefit a lot from Chinese meditation, cultivation and culture. He said that through practicing the exercises, people can easily calm down and reduce stress.
When the couple told a practitioner that they felt too old to learn the practice, the practitioner said that many people in their eighties and nineties have come to learn Falun Gong; age is not a problem. The couple was happy to learn that Falun Dafa cultivates the mind and aids in longevity. The practitioner added that besides doing the exercises, on a daily basis, one must cultivate one's heart and mind according to the principles of Truth-Compassion-Forbearance.
The couple asked for some materials about Falun Gong. They said they regretted that they couldn't go to a local exercise site as they don’t live in Hamburg, but they would look at the exercise instructional video available on the Internet. They left with happy smiles.