The results of a two month study by former Liberal cabinet minister David Kilgour and Winnipeg human rights lawyer David Matas concluded that the harvesting of the body parts from Falun Gong members by the Red Chinese government was "almost too astonishing to comprehend". The report was released on Thursday, July 6, 2006.
The pair volunteered at the request of the Coalition to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong, a Washington, D.C., U.S. body with an office in Ottawa, Canada. They deny that they were, however, members of the organization or partisan with it.
Falun Gong is a meditation and exercise society that started in 1993 in China. When their numbers started to grow rapidly they were banned by the Red Chinese government. More than 100,000 "practitioners" were jailed.
Hearts, kidneys, livers and corneas were removed from executed members of Falun Gong and sold for transplantation at hefty prices concludes the report.
Kilgour, formerly a secretary of state for the Asia-Pacific region said Canadians are among those who have travelled to China to receive harvested organs. "It's appalling," he said.
Matas called the practice a shocking "new form of evil on this planet", at a press conference. He added, "Who would have believed the holocaust before it happened?"
Since Kilgour and Matas were not allowed visas to travel to Red China, their investigation involved speaking to witnesses in the West, reading websites of Chinese transplant centres and conversations with doctors and other officials at hospitals and detention centres in Red China.
Figures in the report indicate 60,000 transplants took place in communist China from 2000 to 2005. Approximately 18,500 would have come from legitimate sources leaving 41,500 unexplained.
The report quotes the former wife of a surgeon who said he removed the corneas from 2,000 Falun Gong prisoners. After the removal they would be given an injection causing heart failure.
In the report members of the Falun Gong mention receiving the corpses of family members with body parts surgically removed.
The report cites that as recently as April the website of the China International Transplantation Network Assistance Centre priced body parts in U.S. dollars : heart - $130,000 to $160,000; liver - $98,000 to $130,000; kidney - $62,000; corneas - $30,000.
The report recommends Ottawa revoke the passports of citizens suspected of travelling to Communist China for transplants and stop Chinese doctors from studying transplants in Canada.
The Communist Chinese government embassy dismissed the report as "groundless and biased."
Amnesty International is requiring more information before it makes a statement.
"We take these allegations seriously and will look into them," said Deepak Obhrai, M.P., Parliamentary Secretary to Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay. He added, "We'll look to have them confirmed."
"The government hasn't formalized an investigation but they are looking into it. It's a good first step," said M.P. Borys Wrzesnewskyj, who was at the launch of the investigation.
Body parts harvesting ';new form of evil';