Thursday, June 23, 2016

Human rights campaigner illuminates dentention in China

  • Wangaratta Chronicle

  • SHARING HER STORY: Galen College year 11 students Amelia Walton and Meg Amery with human rights campaigner Jennifer Zeng. PHOTO: Mal Webster
    HUMAN rights campaigner Jennifer Zeng offered her firsthand experience of detention in a Chinese forced labour camp when she met with senior Galen College students this week.
    Jennifer, who visited Wangaratta to attend Sunday’s screening of award-winning documentary ‘Free China: The Courage to Believe’, in which she features, stayed on to speak to year 11 students on Monday.
    Sentenced to detention in China for her spiritual beliefs as part of the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners, which the Chinese government saw as a threat, Jennifer now works to highlight injustice.
    She addressed many human rights issues during her presentation, focusing on common humanity and the rights of all people to spiritual freedom.
    Year 11 student Meg Amery said Jennifer’s presentation was eye-opening.
    “I previously didn’t know anything about the issues that Chinese people face,” she said.
    “Jennifer’s story was very touching.
    “It was amazing that she was able to escape from forced labour and torture.
    “It’s also very brave of her that she has written about her experience and shared it with so many people.”
    Galen College teacher Tim Ellis said Jennifer shared some very important values through her story.
    “We can often be unaware of the plight of others, but it’s experiences shared by people like Jennifer that highlight our connectedness as human beings,” he said.
    “I’m personally in awe of Jennifer’s courage and compassion, given everything she has been through.
    “She is one of the most profoundly courageous people I’ve ever had the opportunity to know; a true inspiration.”

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