Li Lizhuang was arrested and sentenced to more than ten years in jail for promoting the “Nine True Word Meditation” during the COVID pandemic.
by Yang Feng
The case of orthopedic surgeon Li Lizhuang is one Falun Gong practitioners have managed to bring to national and even international attention through their skilled use of social media, but now new horrific details have emerged.
Li, born in 1973, graduated from Harbin Medical University in 1995. In the same year, he started practicing Falun Gong. He was an attending physician at the Orthopedic Surgery Department of the First Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University and seemed to be promised a brilliant career.
However, with the crackdown on Falun Gong in 1999, Li was repeatedly harassed by the police. He was arrested in 2001 and sentenced to spend time in a labor camp and then in prison, for a total term of six and a half years. He reported that he was tied to an iron chair and tortured with electric batons repeatedly, but he suffered the worst indignities from other inmates, common criminals that were not restrained by the guards. They compelled him to walk naked and bath in cold water outdoors with a temperature of -20° Celsius, and repeatedly raped him by inserting various objects into his anus.
When he was finally released, he discovered that he had been fired and no hospital would employ him. He was reduced to selling clothing in street markets. For many years, he kept a low profile and at least escaped further arrest.
However, he is a living example of the authorities’ failure to destroy Falun Gong, which cost several high-placed anti-xie-jiao bureaucrats their careers. After they had announced that they had successfully eradicated Falun Gong, it was discovered that many practitioners had simply gone underground. When COVID-19 hit, Falun Gong proposed meditation and claimed it would help boost the immune system. It suggested to recite the “Nine True Words,” i.e., the words corresponding to the nine Chinese characters: “Fa-Lun Da-Fa Hao” and “Zhen-Shan-Ren Hao” (法輪大法好, 真善忍好). Their meaning respectively is “Falun Dafa is Great” and “Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance Are Good.”
The “Nine True Words” became very popular. They also showed to the CCP that Falun Gong was still there. During the lockdown, Li became part of a group of Harbin practitioners who called relatives and friends by phone to teach them the “Nine True Words” practice and to tell them to keep calm. The police discovered the network and seven practitioners, including Li, were arrested on April 8, 2020.
On November 17, 2021, the Daqing City Ranghulu District Court, Heilongjiang province, sentenced them to various jail penalties. Considering his precedents, Li got the heavy penalty of ten years and eight months in prison.
Information on Li has now been smuggled out of Harbin’s Hulan Prison, spread through social media, and supplied to several human rights organizations. Li is subject to heavy torture again, including with electric batons, pepper spray, and needles. He is compelled to wear a straitjacket, to drink urine, and to be molested again with electric batons hitting his penis and anus.
Assuming he will survive, the former brilliant surgeon should remain in jail until 2030.