Four intruders barged into the printing plant of the Hong Kong edition of The Epoch Times in the early hours of April 12, damaging computers and printing equipment in an attack believed to be the latest effort by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to silence the news outlet.
In an attack on the same facility in November 2019, four masked men set fire to two printing presses; the perpetrators are still at large.
Cheryl Ng, a spokeswoman for the Hong Kong edition, said the intrusion was characteristic of the CCP and had the aim of silencing an independent outlet from reporting on topics that are taboo to the communist regime.
Ng, who condemned the attack, said it was a crime against Hong Kong’s freedom of speech.
The Epoch Times, one of the few independent media outlets in Hong Kong, is known for its uncensored coverage of China, including political infighting within the CCP, the regime’s human rights violations against ethnic minorities and religious groups, and Beijing’s propaganda and influence operations abroad.
The Hong Kong edition also has provided extensive independent coverage of the city’s pro-democracy movement, which started in June 2019 but subsided in July 2020 when Beijing imposed a draconian national security law on the China-ruled city. The law has further stripped Hong Kong’s dwindling autonomy, in particular the city’s press freedoms. Experience the best way to read The Epoch Times online. Try our free app for a limited time. A CCTV screenshot showing intruders dressed in black using sledgehammers to damage printing press equipment at the print shop of the Hong Kong edition of The Epoch Times on April 12, 2021. (The Epoch Times)
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In a statement, the Hong Kong edition of The Epoch Times condemned the CCP for creating “white terror” in Hong Kong, while calling on the international community to monitor Hong Kong’s freedom of speech, which is under siege by the communist regime.
About 4:38 a.m. on April 12, a female employee of the printing press returned to the shop, where she spotted a man in his 30s standing nearby, while chatting on his cellphone. Two of the four intruders caught on CCTV. (The Epoch Times)
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When the employee tried to close a sliding door, the man suddenly walked up and stood in the doorway, preventing it from being shut.
The man then angrily questioned the female employee, asking her to have ‘Mr. Chu’ come out and meet him. When the employee responded that there was no such person, the man refused to walk away.
Suddenly, three other men arrived and pushed their way into the facility. Two of them carried sledgehammers, and one of them carried a plastic bag with a knife in it.
They shouted at another employee: “Go away. Go away. It is none of your business. Go away. Don’t force me to do anything.” Construction debris on top of printing press equipment at the print shop that prints the Hong Kong edition of The Epoch Times on April 12, 2021. (Adrian Yu/The Epoch Times)
After barging in, the men started hammering on the printing equipment. Among the items damaged were the printing press’s central control panel and several computers. One of the men also tossed construction debris from his bag onto the equipment.
The intrusion, which was captured on video, lasted about two minutes. When the men left, they stole a computer before fleeing in a white van.
The printing plant staff then called the police, who arrived shortly afterward. Damaged computer. (Adrian Yu/The Epoch Times)
The printing site, established in February 2006, has been attacked four previous times. That month, thugs broke into the building and damaged the newly purchased equipment.
In October 2012, thugs failed to smash open a gate in an attempt to break into the print shop. About two months later, seven men toting toolboxes appeared and began trying to break through the gate; they fled after police were called.
The Nov. 19, 2019, arson attack resulted in damages of more than $40,000. That day, four individuals, who were dressed in black in an apparent attempt to disguise themselves as Hong Kong democracy protesters, lit a fire that activated the warehouse’s sprinkler system.
Several U.S. senators, as well as the rights groups Reporters Without Borders and the Committee to Protect Journalists, and the Foreign Correspondents Club in Hong Kong all spoke out against the arson attack.
Ng said that the company’s Hong Kong edition won’t bow to violent threats, and is in the process of repairing the damage. She expressed hope that the Hong Kong police will solve the case and bring the four men to justice.
She urged Hongkongers to continue to support the newspaper.
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539 Comments Texas Senate lawmakers have unanimously adopted a resolution condemning the Chinese regime’s “vile practice of forcibly removing human organs for transplant” while urging the United States to take a more aggressive stance on the issue.
“We want to go on record as saying, ‘No, this is happening, and we condemn it,’” state Sen. Angela Paxton, the primary author of the resolution, told NTD, an affiliate of The Epoch Times, on April 21.
Part of the motivation for Paxton, who has spent at least two years advancing the cause, was the lack of public attention on the organ transplant abuse, which had led many people to dismiss it as “rumors.”
“We know this is true, we know it is wrong, and that it again goes to the very heart of destroying the dignity of every human being,” she said.
People around the world have flocked to China to seek transplant surgeries upon learning that they could get a critical organ in as little as two weeks. Yet such speed comes at a cost of innocent lives, the resolution passed through the Texas Senate on April 15 warns.
In 2019, the independent China Tribunal concluded that prisoners of conscience—a majority of whom are adherents of the persecuted spiritual discipline Falun Gong—are being killed on a “significant scale” for their organs. Experience the best way to read The Epoch Times online. Try our free app for a limited time.
Dr. Howard Monsour, who was among the first doctors involved in liver transplantation after its approval in 1984, recalled one of his patients from 10 years ago who developed liver cancer that had spread too far for him to have transplant surgery. After multiple U.S. hospitals turned him down, the desperate man took a trip to China and got a liver for $88,000, even though Monsour advised him against it, cautioning that late-stage surgery could accelerate the progression of cancer cells. The patient went ahead with the surgery and died eight months later.
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“Think it of as a person trapped underwater. They will do almost anything to obtain a breath of air that gives them life,” said Monsour, now a gastroenterology specialist at Granbury-based Lakeside Physicians Express Care, in testimony to the state senators. The surgery in China “was a disservice to this Texas citizen, and especially to the donor if it came from a prisoner,” he said.
On the state Senate floor, Falun Gong practitioners who survived torture in China for their faith recalled being subjected to unexplained forced blood draws and witnessing “horrifying” disappearances of inmates, which they later linked to organ harvesting. The Masanjia Labor Camp in northeastern China, which was the site of numerous severe abuses against practitioners of Falun Gong, as documented by human rights groups, in this file photo. (Minghui.org)
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At Masanjia Labor Camp, where Houston resident Wang Haiying was once detained, Wang saw the guards drawing a large tube of blood from a female practitioner in the same cell, while the woman was physically restrained, she said.
“We lived in terror every day,” she told the state senators. “Some practitioners were beaten to death and were seen carried away. Others were taken by police and then went missing.”
Yu Xinhui, who now lives in Austin, remembered seeing as many as dozens of prisoners taken out of Sihui Prison in Guangdong, where he was held from 2001 to 2007. These people were never seen again, he said.
One night in 2006, he watched as several buses, military cars, and an ambulance arrived at midnight. Armed policemen then told the detainees to lie on their beds facing the wall, and “come out when your name is called, and don’t bring anything with you.”
“Everyone was terrified,” he said. “Three people were taken away from my cell. Their belongings were left in the cell. None of those people ever came back.”
While imprisoned, Yu met a doctor from his hometown who confirmed to him that live organ harvesting was happening.
“You Falun Gong practitioners have the best body, and the organs are of course the best. Other prisoners’ organs might not be good to use because they abuse drugs, alcohol, or engage in other bad habits,” he recalled the doctor saying. A woman adjusts banners in support of the Falun Gong spiritual discipline, which is persecuted in mainland China, in Tung Chung, an area popular with tourists from the mainland, in Hong Kong on April 25, 2019. (Anthony Wallace/AFP via Getty Images)
The doctor suggested that Yu pretend to give up practicing Falun Gong to save his life.
“Otherwise, who knows what would happen to your heart, liver, spleen, and lungs?” The doctor said.
State Sen. Donna Campbell, a joint author and one of 12 sponsors of the bill, said the hearing was “eye-opening.”
“I saw the sadness, the profound sadness that comes with such an atrocity,” she told NTD. She hoped the resolution could be the start of a broad movement to stop the abuse.
“There needs to be a global outcry that this is wrong. Nations need to sanction China for this kind of behavior.”
As an emergency room physician, she also appealed to Chinese doctors to “walk away” and “say no” to such practices.
“It’s against any moral conscience they could possibly have,” she said. “They need to work for lives, not to take lives away.” Brenda Chen contributed to this report.
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