Lin Zhanxiang | Minghui.org
The Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, which was passed by the U.S. Congress in a 92-7 vote on December 8, 2016, should be a warning to human rights abusers around the world and particularly in China.
The Act allows the president to deny U.S. visas and freeze U.S.-based assets of human rights abusers and corrupt foreign officials. Much Chinese who have been involved in corruption and/or crimes against humanity, such as the harvesting of organs from prisoners of conscience (mainly Falun Gong practitioners) may be targeted by the law.
Many of them have businesses in the U.S. and have transferred assets to the U.S. and other Western countries to avoid exposure.
These people commit their crimes in China and enjoy the proceeds in America and the West. It remains to be seen how long countries that follow the rule of law will continue to allow these activities.
On April 20, the president of the United States, Donald Trump, sent a letter to the Chairmen of the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations and the Judiciary, the House Committees on Foreign Affairs and Financial Services, and the Senate Committees on Foreign Relations and Banking, Housing and Foreign Affairs.
President Trump enclosed an initial report on the implementation of the Act. The report, compiled by the Departments of State, the Treasury, and other relevant executive departments and agencies, “outlines my Administration’s support for this important legislation and makes clear our commitment to its robust and thorough enforcement,” said the president in the letter.
The letter says, “As noted in the report, my Administration is actively identifying persons and entities to whom the Act may apply and are collecting the evidence necessary to apply it. Over the coming weeks and months, agencies will undertake thorough interagency vetting to ensure we fulfill our commitment to hold perpetrators of human rights abuses and corruption accountable.”
“As we implement this legislation, the United States will continue its leadership role in championing fundamental human rights and sound, transparent governance.”
The Act may be bad news for those who have been involved in the persecution of Falun Gong in China.
According to the statistics published by Minghui.org, 4,103 Falun Gong practitioners have been tortured to death for refusing to renounce their faith, and at least hundreds of thousands have been sent to prisons and forced labor camps since the persecution started in July 1999.
The persecution, launched and directed personally by the former Communist Party chief Jiang Zemin, has no legal basis. According to current Chinese law, practicing Falun Gong has always been legal.
To drive the persecution policies forward, Jiang Zemin leveraged the corruption of government officials. Many key perpetrators of the persecution, including Zhou Yongkang and Bo Xilai, secretly deposited their ill-gained money overseas.
To assist in the implementation of the Act, Falun Gong practitioners have been actively collecting evidence against these criminals and will submit them to the State Department.