Falun Gong Practitioner Tortured
to Death on a 'Tiger Bench'
Monday October 15, 2007
Falun Gong practitioner Ms. Wang Yuhuan from Changchun City,
Jilin Province, died on September 24, 2007 whilst under police
custody. The police didn't inform her family until October 10.
Wang was a peaceful and kind elderly lady in her 60s. She had
been in and out of jail over ten times in the past eight years
because of her belief in Falun Gong. The police in Changchun once
tortured her on a Tiger Bench for three days consecutively. Her
anklebones were visible because of the shackles digging into her
legs and the police beat her repeatedly, causing her arms to break.
Wang had to endure terrible forms of torture: she was shocked
with electric batons until her face was severely burnt, several
officers picked her up and repeatedly threw her against a tree,
and a police officer once burned her eyes with a cigarette and
stabbed her ears with skewers. Even worse, a prison medical staff
member once cut her veins and almost killed her with an injection.
She was stripped of all her clothing, together with other imprisoned
female Falun Gong practitioners, and they were hung on wooden
boards naked for 26 days straight so that the male guards and
prisoners could humiliate them.
Wang was diagnosed with breast cancer in the detention center
and they thought that she would not survive. She was later released
but on May 9, 2007, she was illegally arrested again. According
to sources, this large scale arrest was initiated by the Jilin
Province Public Safety Department, the Changchun City Public Safety
Bureau, and the Erdao District Police Station. Nearly 70 practitioners
were illegally arrested including Wang and they were kept in the
Changchun City Third Detention Center.
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Since then, there was no news of Wang until October 9, 2007.
The police called Wang's family and told them, "Wang had
internal bleeding. The emergency rescue failed and she died on
the spot." In fact, Wang died on September 24 at the Changchun
City Central Hospital but the police claimed that they did not
know where Wang's body was and the details of her death.
In 2005, human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng once called Wang the
"saint who escaped from the Tiger Bench" after hearing
Wang's experience in the prison. The following is a quote from
Wang reminiscing her experience, "The police tortured me
every five minutes. They handcuffed my hands behind my back and
lifted them up and down violently. I heard the sound of my shoulders
dislocating. The excruciating pain almost knocked me unconscious
and sweat and tears poured down my face. Immediately, they pushed
my head down toward my crotch. My chest was immobilized on the
Tiger Bench with iron rods and it felt like my neck was about
to break. Since my chest and abdomen were fixed onto the bench
with iron rods, I felt I was dying second by second from suffocation
and the excruciating pain. They tied my ankles to iron rings with
a rope and pulled on the rings so hard that I felt they would
dislocate my ankles. At the same time, other police pushed my
head toward my crotch. I couldn't stop shivering because of the
Wang added, "They tortured me like that every five minutes.
My hair and clothes were soaked in sweat, tears, and blood from
my torn flesh. Again and again, I fainted because I couldn't bear
the excruciating pain. Repeatedly, the police woke me up by pouring
cold or boiling water on me. The boiling water blistered my already
damaged skin. I wished they would just shoot me right there because
I really didn't want to bear such pain."