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Press Release Issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Affairs of Tanzania

(December 11th, 2004,  Dar es Salaam)

The government of the United Republic of Tanzania has received with disappointment, the misleading news spread by a Chinese cult, Falun Gong that in July 2004 the Court of Tanzania summoned Chinese State Councilor and Former Minister of Education, Ms. Chen Zhili on allegations of torture and extrajudicial killings committed in China.

The story published on the cult's website, www.faluninfo.net, claims that a lawsuit was filed against Ms. Zhili by a group of international attorneys representing the Falun Gong practitioners, during her four-day working visit to Tanzania, which started on 17th July 2004. The story, posted on the web on 31st July 2004, however doesn't say which court summoned the State Coucilor.

The Tanzania Government doesn't have any record of legal charges against Ms. Zhili during her visit in the country. The story is a mere fabrication aiming at spoiling the good all weather people's friendship between Tanzania and China.

The Tanzania Government records the visit as a milestone of the co-operation between China and Tanzania. With regret the Tanzania Government sees the cult's reliance of falsehood as a loss of direction by the Falun Gong, which claims to advocate for truthfulness.

On the day the story claims Ms. Zhili was summoned by the court in Dar es Salaam(19th July, 2004), the Chinese State Councilor was engaged in constructive discussions with the Tanzania Government officials on ways to further expand and strengthen co-operation between the two countries, particularly in educational and cultural sections.

The Tanzania Government will not allow any move by small groups of people, like the Falun Gong cult to spoil or even embarrass the long standing friendship and brotherhood that exist between the upright peoples of China and Tanzania.

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