Canadian Rights Lawyer David Matas Receives Award in Italy

Matas3-676x450By Epoch Times

Longtime rights defender recognized for his work

Upon learning about the Holocaust in his youth, David Matas felt the urge to do something in response to the massive crime against humanity. He later found his calling in taking up human rights causes.

“Human rights became a vehicle to be able to do something,” said the Winnipeg-based international human rights lawyer, who over the years has devoted his time to many worthwhile causes.

That work was recognized on July 10, when Matas received the Carthage International Award in Rome in the category of Peace and Defence of Human Rights.

The award is granted annually by the International Carthage Academy, a non-profit organization that presents awards in 16 different categories to those in Italy and abroad who have contributed to the development and dissemination of culture and knowledge in various fields.

Members of Congress Call for Ending Forced Organ Harvesting

Falun_Gong_DC_2014By Epoch Times

WASHINGTON—A bipartisan group of members of Congress and leaders of human rights organizations observed on Thursday an anniversary that communist China would prefer be ignored—the 15th year of the persecution of Falun Gong.

Hundreds of Falun Gong practitioners and supporters converged on the West Lawn of the Capitol to cheer speeches calling for an end to the persecution, which began on July 20, 1999.

The speakers honored the 3,769 practitioners confirmed killed by the regime. The true number who died from torture and abuse while being held in prisons, detention centers, labor camps, and brainwashing facilities is undoubtedly several times larger. In addition, researchers believe tens of thousands more have been murdered for their organs, which are used for transplantation.

The speakers also honored the millions of Falun Gong practitioners inside China for practicing “civil disobedience on a scale unprecedented in China’s history,” according to the Falun Dafa Information Center.

Rally Commemorating 15 Years of Falun Gong Persecution by party-state in China 

By Hon David Kilgour

Embassy of China, 515 St. Patrick St. Ottawa
17 July 2014

Thanks to Alex Neve, secretary general of Amnesty International Canada, Paul Li, a survivor of the persecution, and to all of you for coming today to protest the crimes against humanity that have now continued for 15 years against Falun Gong practitioners across China.

Photo: Alex Neve of Amnesty International speaking at Chinese embassy in Ottawa on commemoration of 15 years of persecution of Falun Gong.

This event is part of a global mobilization marking the persecution of Falun Gong in China launched on July 20, 1999. I understand that vigils will be held across Canada and in various other rule of law countries around the world in front of Chinese embassies and consulates marking this day of shame.