Ending Organ Pillaging/Trafficking in China Print
Global Stage
Hon. David Kilgour   

We are here this morning to call on Prime Minister Harper to use his upcoming visit to China to help free Falun Gong and other prisoners of conscience languishing in Chinese forced labour gulags and jails.

The current situation of Falun Gong across China can be briefly stated:

  • After its introduction in 1992, Falun Gong won numerous awards and gained widespread popularity across China. (The ministry of sport advertised it, praising its positive effects on general health. By 1999, 70-100 million Chinese were practising Falun Gong exercises and meditation).
  • Falun Gong practitioners are friendly and helpful and did not get involved in political discussions. In July 1999, Falun Gong was banned by the party-state and is being viciously persecuted across China for the past 15 years.
  • The persecution includes brainwashing, forced labour camps, prison, torture, and organ pillaging/trafficking. There is also absurd propaganda, some of which is adopted by Western media.
  • (Chinese nationals are reluctant to donate organs for transplantation for deeplyrooted cultural reasons. In order to provide organs for transplantations, Chinese law in 1984 allowed organs to be procured from executed prisoners. It was then only a small step to take them from prisoners of conscience, including, as Ethan Gutmann’s new book, The Slaughter, stresses, Falun Gong, Uyghurs, Tibetans, and house Christians).
  • (Millions of persecuted Falun Gong are still exposed to being placed in the partystate organ pool. Organs are removed on demand and on short notice without the consent of the detainees).
  • (While incarcerated in labour camps, Falun Gong are systematically examined at intervals by medical doctors: blood and urine tests, ultra-sonograms and x-rays . Instead of being tortured to death and their bodies then cremated, Falun Gong became a profitable source of transplant organs. After 1999, Chinese hospitals began advertising on the Internet.  The vile commerce flourished. The goods: organs;  delivery time: 1–4 weeks; the price tag: a kidney for $60,000, a liver for $100,000).
  • (From 1999 to 2006, the number of transplant centres in China rose from 150 to 600. How could China’s party-state have the confidence in a continuous, longterm supply of organs without having a public organ donation program. In the same period, executions thankfully declined, but the transplantation figures in China increased dramatically after 1999: from less than 3,000 transplants before 1999 to up to reportedly 20,000 in 2005. Where did the organs come from?)
  • (In China, prisoners of conscience are killed on demand for transplant organs without having received a death sentence, without having committed a crime, without having given free, voluntary consent for the organ donation.) The sad truth is that the participating doctors in China have led transplant medicine into the crime against humanity of killing other people for their organs.

We call on Prime Minister Harper to urge the head of the party-state in Beijing to end the pillaging/trafficking of organs and to release the largest group of prisoners of conscience in the world, including six Canadian family members.

Bloody Harvest

In 2006, David Matas and I completed an independent investigation into the allegations about organ pillaging/trafficking from Falun Gong, which evolved into the 2009 book, Bloody Harvest. It concluded,

We have come to the regrettable conclusion that the allegations are true. We believe that there has been and continues to be large scale organ seizures from unwilling Falun Gong practitioners.

(Our report in 19 languages can be accessed at www.Organharvestinvestigation.net or www.david-kilgour.com.) Over the 2000-2005 period we examined, we concluded that 41,500 transplanted organs in China could only come from Falun Gong.

(Forced organ procurement in China is unprecedented across the world because organs  are sourced from prisoners whose lives are actively terminated to obtain their vital  organs for commerce. As Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting (DAFOH) have  pointed out many times, "The practice shakes the very foundation of medical ethics. It  provokes the question: Can one intentionally take a life to save a life? ...Thus it is the  current focus of...(DAFOH) to call for an end to this unethical practice." )

Many MDs around the world have joined DAFOH in this campaign. In November of last year, for example, 1.5 million persons from Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting (DAFOH)  50 countries signed the DAFOH petition to the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, calling for an end to forced organ pillaging.

In March of this year, the European Economic and Social Committee aligned with the  European Parliament in condemning China's "scandalous" organ procurement  practices. (In April, the Transplantation Society and the Declaration of Istanbul  Custodian Group sent an open letter to China's Xi Jinping concerning "corrupt practices  of doctors and officials who obtain organs from executed prisoners illegally for sale to  wealthy foreign patients from around the world." )

Policy recommendations:

1-Until organ pillaging stops across China, Canada and the responsible international community should close all Confucius Institutes

McMaster University in Hamilton announced in early 2014 that it had decided to close its Institute. Hiring for them is done by its headquarters in China (Hanban) and excludes persons who practise Falun Gong. McMaster University determined that this  violates its principles of equality.

The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) in 2013 urged all Canadian universities and colleges to end ties with Confucius Institutes. CAUT executive director James Turk:

“In agreeing to host Confucius Institutes, Canadian universities and colleges are compromising their own integrity by allowing the Chinese Language Culture International to have a voice in a number of academic matters, such as curriculum, texts, and topics of class discussion …Simply put, Confucius Institutes are owned and operated by an authoritarian government and beholden to its politics.”


The Parliament of Canada should enact legislation banning the use by Canadians of trafficked organs. This would highlight the importance of ending this abuse and strengthen the position of those in China who are themselves seeking to end it.

3-Medical Ethics

There should be no complicity by any Canadian medical professionals in the recovery of organs or tissues from executed prisoners in China.

All Canadian patients who are candidates for transplantation should receive information about the dangers and ethical concerns regarding transplant tourism and organ trafficking.

For transplant tourism into China, patients should be advised that organs may have been taken by force, and individuals are killed to obtain their organs.

(Patients should be advised that the transplant tourism industry relies on secrecy, making it is impossible to determine whether donor information provided by organ brokers, who are motivated by financial gain, is accurate. In non-emergency situations, individual physicians may elect to defer to another physician care of a patient who has returned from transplant tourism abroad. In such situations, the physician should ensure that the patient has reasonable access to the proposed alternative care provider.)


The ability of those outside of China to stop the killing in China of prisoners of conscience for their organs is limited. To do nothing is to be complicit in the Chinese party-state and medical professionals crime there against humanity.

A significant driver for change in transplant practices in China is the desire to achieve international respectability. Giving Chinese transplant professionals any form of international status while transplant abuse continues across China undermines the efforts to end the abuse. Mr. Harper can help here during his visit.

Thank you.

Notes of speech by the Hon. David Kilgour at media conference and rally for Falun Gong at the Canadian Parliament on 4th November 2014.

David Kilgour is a former MP for both the Conservative and Liberal Parties in the south-east region of Edmonton and has also served as the Secretary of State for Latin America and Africa, Secretary of State for Asia-Pacific and Deputy Speaker of the House. He is the author of several books including Bloody Harvest. (with David Matas)

Last Updated on Wednesday, 12 November 2014 17:25