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Falun Gong Members Said Harassed

October 15, 1999

HONG KONG (AP) _ Members of the Falun Gong sect said Friday that a woman organizing a support drive for the group in China was being threatened with arrest.

Hong Kong sect member Paul Chan said Lee Yuk-suet, also from Hong Kong, called him to say she was being harassed by police at an apartment in the southern border city of Shenzhen. Falun Gong is banned in China.

According to Chan, Lee told Falun Gong members in Shenzhen that she would collect signatures on a letter asking the local government to halt the crackdown on the group. The letter would also criticize alleged police brutality against a sect member, Zhao Jinhua, who was reportedly beaten to death in police custody in Shandong province.

The report of the death has not been confirmed.

The Associated Press called a Shenzhen telephone number provided by Chan that was answered by a woman claiming to be Lee.

She said she was holed up in an apartment in Shenzhen as three policemen waited for her outside, demanding that she surrender.

The line was cut during the interview, apparently because of a faulty connection. The number was busy when dialed again.

Lee, in her 50s, lives in Hong Kong, but her cross-border beauty product business takes her to mainland China frequently, Chan said. She is an active member of the quasi-religious sect, but is not known to have organized other protest activities in China, according to Chan.

Falun Gong, founded by Li Hongzhi, a Chinese native now living in New York, is a blend of Li’s theories and concepts from Buddhism and Taoism. The sect is legal in Hong Kong.

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