Illegal Organ Harvesting And Transplants - China Accused Of Systematically Extracting Body Parts From Political And Religious Prisoners

Illegal Organ Harvesting And Transplants: Report Accuses China Of Systematically Extracting Body Parts From Thousands Of Political And Religious Prisoners

China has been accused of illegally harvesting human organs and conducting transplants in large numbers. The country executes thousands of prisoners each year to harvest their organs, claims a new report.

China is involved in a massive illegal organ harvesting program, claims a new report by former Canadian lawmaker David Kilgour, human rights lawyer David Matas, and journalist Ethan Gutmann. The trio carefully collated public records from hospitals across China and then compared them to the official figures released by the country. In essence, Chinese hospitals are conducting far more organ-transplant operations than the country has officially acknowledged. The group has proven there is a huge discrepancy between the two figures and claims the difference is filled by organs obtained by executing political and religious prisoners.

The explosive report claims China has created a huge resource of illegally harvested organs that it offers to the country’s elite and foreigners who are ready to pay top dollar to receive replacement kidneys, livers, and other body parts. The authors of the report collectively blame the Chinese government, the Communist Party, the health system, doctors, and hospitals for being involved in one of the largest and systematic organ harvesting racket the world has ever experienced, said Matas in a statement.

“The (Communist Party) says the total number of legal transplants is about 10,000 per year. But we can easily surpass the official Chinese figure just by looking at the two or three biggest hospitals.”

China closely guards the details about the organ transplants that its state-sponsored hospitals conduct annually. However, officials claim that last year, 146 approved hospitals transplanted 7,785 organs that were voluntarily donated by 2,766 people, reported the Globe and Mail.

The trio sifted through a huge database of hospital records, accounts from doctors, press clippings, and public statements to arrive at the total number of organ transplants the country conducts. According to their research, Chinese surgeons conduct anywhere between 60,000 and 100,000 organ transplants in a single year. The report notes China has more than 700 hospitals that regularly carry out liver and kidney transplants.

Needless to say, the huge variation in numbers easily surpasses the total number of organs that have been offered by voluntary donors. The primary question the report attempts to answer is from where the surgeons are getting the kidneys, livers, and hearts for the massive number of transplants they conduct each year.

According to the report, the gap is made up of executed prisoners, many of them prisoners of conscience locked up for their religious or political beliefs, reported CNN. While China offers an official number of organ transplants, it doesn’t report the total number of prisoners it executes each year.

The authors of the report claim to have relied on publicly available statements and records released by hospitals across China. Additionally, the report is based on interviews with and official biographies of individual doctors.

The organs are largely obtained from thousands of people that are executed in China annually. The report alleges the executions are conducted in secret, and the organs are quickly and systematically extracted. The report notes it is the members of the religious and ethnic minorities, including Uyghurs, Tibetans, underground Christians, and practitioners of the banned Falun Gong spiritual movement, who are the victims of the massive illegal organ harvesting racket that China is running.

Since China began cracking down on the religious communities in 1999, “tens of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners have been arbitrarily detained,” reported Ottawa Citizen. The country considers the movement a cult and a threat to the country. Reports of capture, forcible detention, and even torture are quite common. The report mentions the political and religious prisoners are forced to have blood tests and medical exams. These tests are allegedly stored in a database comprising of living organ sources. The database serves as a quick reference facilitating instant organ matching, extraction, and transplant.

The report concludes that the huge number of unreported executions is fueling the illegal organ harvesting and transplant industry that is profiting the hospitals, doctors, and the government.

[Photo by XiXinXing/Getty Images]

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