Chinese Vice President’s College Classmates Tortured, Imprisoned and Killed by Jiang’s Campaign of State Terrorism

As Vice President Hu travels to the U.S., a former classmate recalls his brutal torture at the hands of Chinese police

NEW YORK, April 29th, 2002 (Falun Dafa Information Center) – Tsinghua University, often called “China’s MIT,” appears to have become a willing and militant agent of Jiang Zemin’s persecution of the Falun Gong meditation practice. According to the Hong Kong-based Information Center for Human Rights and Democracy, more than 300 of the university’s students and faculty have been detained, thrown into forced labor camps or imprisoned since July, 1999.

One Tsinghua alumnus, Yuan Jiang of Gansu Province, was tortured to death in police custody last November.

Tsinghua University is a center for advanced scientific and technological learning. One of the university’s most prominent graduates is the man expected to be China’s next leader, Hu Jintao. This week, as Vice President Hu visits the U.S., distinguished Tsinghua graduates and Falun Gong supporters are asking that he help save the lives of his fellow alumni.

Tsinghua University “School Spirit”: “Cultivating Virtue To Carry To The Outer World”

Vice President Hu was once a classmate of a man named Zhang Mengye. After the persecution of Falun Gong began, Zhang was sent to a forced labor camp because he refused to give up his practice. At the labor camp, Zhang suffered from repeated mental and physical torture. “Upon my release, my weight was less than 70 pounds, my face was pale, my eyes were dark and sunken and my feet were swollen,” Zhang recalls.

Tsighua’s motto is “Self Discipline and Social Commitment,” and the “School Spirit” statement on their website speaks of “cultivating virtue.” However, in assisting Jiang Zemin to conduct his crimes against humanity, the university has precisely targeted for persecution the students who best comply with these principles – those who practice Falun Gong, which espouses the principles of “Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance.”

The Persecution of Tsinghua University’s Honor Students

Among those targeted by the university are often some of its most honored students. Wang Xin, for example, a recipient of the “Most Excellent Cadre of the School” scholarship, was told that he would not be allowed to return until he completely abandoned Falun Gong. Party member and class of ’96 Tsinghua graduate Yao Yue was awarded the title of “Most Excellent Graduate of Beijing.” On September 3, 1999, however, she was dragged to the police station at Tsinghua University for practicing Falun Gong meditation on campus, and was subsequently expelled from both the Party and the university. Early in the morning of January 1, 2001, policemen broke into her house and arrested Yao and her husband, Liu Wenyu, who was also an honors student at Tsinghua working on his PhD. Yao was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Recently, after much international effort, graduate of Tsinghua and Falun Gong practitioner Zhao Ming was released from two years of detention. Zhao, a computer science postgraduate student at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, was once a student and the Head of the Ziguan Conglomerate’s Internet Center Department at Tsinghua University. In 1999, Zhao Ming traveled to Beijing to legally appeal for Falun Gong at the federal Appeal Office. He was arrested as soon as he walked in the door and subsequently detained and tortured until his release just several weeks ago.

Tsinghua University was in the news in February as well, when President Bush delivered a televised speech there. Prior to Bush’s visit, 15 distinguished alumni scientists of Tsinghua University urged President Bush to demand that China’s leadership release all Tsinghua students and faculty who have been imprisoned for practicing Falun Gong. In his speech, Mr. Bush directly pointed at the illegitimate persecution of Falun Gong by saying that spiritual practices should definitely not be considered a “threat to public order.” But these comments were edited out of the “official” video coverage of his speech that went out over China’s airwaves.

Falun Dafa Information Center spokesperson and Tsinghua alumnus, Dr. Shiyu Zhou: “The lives of hundreds of China’s most prized graduates remain in danger. Mr. Hu, Tsinghua’s most notable graduate, is visiting the U.S. during a time when the persecution of Falun Gong in China continues unabated. Thus, upon his visit, Tsinghua graduates will ask him to help his fellow alumni return to their families and studies as soon as possible, and be spared any more of the brutal treatment to which they are currently subject.”