A 75-year old woman, Miao Xiuqiong, was sentenced in two decisions of 2016 and 2021 to a total of eight and a half years in jail.
by Liang Changpu
In 2021, “Bitter Winter” reported that a campaign of indoctrination against groups banned as xie jiao and “illegal religion” was being conducted among villagers of the Yi ethnic minority in in Honghe Hani and Yi Autonomous Prefecture, in the southeastern part of Yunnan province, which borders Vietnam.
The Yi ethnic minority has its traditional shamanic religion, but a robust presence of Christians as well. The CCP has invented a shamanistic “church” of a supposed “religion of Bimoism,” which it keeps under strict control.
This does not prevent Yi villagers from converting to “unauthorized” religions. Hence, the propaganda campaigns and crackdown targeting the Honghe Hani and Yi Autonomous Prefecture.
Only in the last weeks, relatives learned the whereabouts of Miao Xiuqiong, a 75-year-old Falun Gong practitioner that was taken away by the police and “disappeared” in December 2021. It comes out that Miao was sentenced to four years in jail and is due for release only in December 2025.
In fact, Miao did not stay out of jail for long. She had already been arrested in 2016. She was sentenced to four years and six months in prison by the Jianshui County Court of Honghe Hani and Yi Autonomous Prefecture in March 2016. She was released in January 2020.
When she was arrested in 2016, Miao already had a past in which after the anti-Falun-Gong crackdown started in China in 1999, she was repeatedly detained and sent to a drug rehabilitation center, although she did not have drug problems.
The reason of Miao’s particularly harsh persecution, which shows no mercy towards her old age, is Falun Gong’s success among the Yi minority. Falun Gong practitioners are persecuted regardless of their ethnicity, but the combination between belonging to an ethnic minority and believing in a xie jiao is regarded by the CCP as particularly dangerous.