Party and Government Agencies

The regime mobilized the entire state apparatus in its campaign against Falun Gong. Below are the main agencies responsible for carrying out this campaign.

610 Office and Political and Legal Affairs Committee

In March 2015, Phoenix Satellite Television, a Hong Kong-based mandarin language station authorized by the Chinese government to broadcast in Mainland China, published an interview with Huang Jiefu, in which he stated,1 “When we decided to stop the reliance on executed prisoners for organ transplants, [it was] the most helpless period we’ve been in … Using prisoner organs, this kind of situation naturally would come to have all kinds of murky and difficult problems in it. Do you know the meaning of my words? …. It became filthy, it became murky and intractable, it became an extremely sensitive, extremely complicated area, basically a forbidden area.”

Huang mentioned that it is now possible to touch this forbidden area because of the downfall of a “big tiger” in the anti-corruption campaign, “Zhou Yongkang is the big tiger; he was our General Secretary of the National Political and Legal Affairs Committee, and a formerly member of the Politburo Standing Committee. Everyone knows this … So as for where executed prisoner organs come from, isn’t it very clear?”

The Political and Legal Affairs Committee was established in September 1949 to direct the work of the Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of Justice, Committee for Social and Legal Affairs, and the Ethnic Affairs Commission.2
Before the campaign against Falun Gong was officially launched, the Chinese Communist Party created a “Central Leading Group to handle the Falun Gong issue,” under which an “Office of the Leading Group to handle the Falun Gong issue” was established. It is internally known as the “610 Office,” deriving its name from the date of its founding, June 10th, 1999.

With a structure extending from top to bottom throughout the Party, government, and military, it was given the power to command all police and judicial organs. This organization is akin to the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Cultural Revolution Group, and is dedicated to carrying out the systematic eradication of the practice of Falun Gong. It is an ad hoc agency directly under the Chinese Communist Party Central Committee and is endowed with extraordinary and extralegal power. It later changed its name to the Central Leading Group on Dealing with Heretical Religions or Office of Maintaining Stability.3

Roles of the Communist Party and government agencies in forced organ harvesting

The Political and Legal Affairs Committee and 610 Office have the power to control personnel and resources under more than 20 CCP and government agencies and organizations, such as the Ministry of Public Security (police system), Ministry of State Security, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, propaganda departments, and the fields of finance, culture, education, science and technology, and health throughout the country.4

A nationwide propaganda campaigns has been a key tool in the suppression of Falun Gong. Since the persecution began in July 1999, the 610 Office has used the country’s newspapers, television stations, radio stations, websites, and loudspeakers in rural areas to broadcast anti-Falun Gong propaganda. It also has used Xinhua News Agency, China News Service, Party-controlled media overseas, and Chinese consulates to spread this propaganda globally.

The demonization of and incitement of hatred towards Falun Gong provided a basis on which crimes against practitioners could be justified.

In 2002, Jiang Zemin promoted Zhou Yongkang to Minister of Public Security, as well as Deputy Secretary of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Committee, in which role he cooperated with Committee Party Secretary Luo Gan to implement the suppression of Falun Gong nationwide.

Zhou made the eradication of Falun Gong a major focus of domestic security work in China. During his tenure, the quantity of transplants taking place in China, with organs sourced from Falun Gong practitioners, continued to grow rapidly.

In October 2007, Zhou Yongkang replaced Luo Gan as the Party Secretary of the Political and Legal Affairs Committee. Zhou became head of the “Central Leading Group to handle the Falun Gong issue” and was placed on the Party’s highest strategic tier—the Politburo Standing Committee. At the end of 2013, the new Chinese Communist Party leadership removed Zhou Yongkang under charges of corruption and plotting to stage a coup. But the machinery set in place to carry out the persecution of Falun Gong has not stopped.

Ministry of Health, National Population and Family Planning Commission, and Others

The Ministry of Health (MOH) and its successor, the National Health and Family Planning Commission (NPFPC), are responsible for the planning, policymaking, regulation, and management of China’s human organ transplant industry as well as the organ donation and allocation system.5

These agencies centrally coordinate and guide procurement and allocation, clinical care and services, post-operative registration, oversight, and donation. They organize and implement training and sharing in regulations, policies, and techniques for transplantation. In particular, they evaluate the qualifications of transplant institutions, as well as the capabilities and management of clinical practices. They also grant and manage permits for qualified transplant centers.

Since organ transplantation has been made a high priority in the national strategy and heavily emphasized as a future emerging industry, a large number of organ transplant projects have been funded under major national programs. The Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Science and Technology, the Ministry of Education, and the military have invested heavily in research, development, and personnel training in transplantation technology to meet the needs of this rapidly growing industry. New capabilities and techniques have emerged and have spread extensively, allowing live organ transplantation in China to grow into a large, industrialized operation in just a few years.

In March 2013, at the Twelfth National People’s Congress, the former Ministry of Health and the National Population and Family Planning Commission were dissolved, and Huang Jiefu was relieved from his position as Deputy Minister of Health. Meanwhile, a new National Health and Family Planning Commission was founded.6

On March 1, 2014, the China Human Organ Donation and Transplantation Commission announced its establishment. It declared that, under the leadership of the National Health and Family Planning Commission and the China Red Cross Society, this Commission would work as a central management unit to guide and oversee the human organ transplant and donation system in China. Huang Jiefu was named the Commission’s director.7

Huang Jiefu announced that China would discontinue the use of organs from death-row prisoners on January 1, 2015. That announcement itself has no legal effect and cannot be traced to any officially promulgated policy statements or laws. The State Council’s Human Organ Transplant Ordinance promulgated on March 21, 2007, did not abolish the Provisional Regulations of 19848 that allow the sourcing of organs from prisoners without consent. The 1984 Provisional Regulations remain valid today.9

The Military

The People’s Liberation Army is controlled by the Chinese Communist Party and is one of the few militaries in the world that belong to a party rather than the State.

From 1999 to May 2006, the Chinese Communist Party Central Military Commission held six special meetings on “handling foreign-related religious issues,” which mainly targeted Falun Gong.10 The Communist Party’s former leader Jiang Zemin authorized the General Logistics Department, to be the core unit to lead every level of the military to eradicate the practice of Falun Gong. The military was given the power to manage the secret detention facilities and the entire related process of live organ harvesting.11

According to an investigation by the World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong, over 100 different military hospitals have developed or expanded their organ transplant facilities, with over 2,000 medical personnel involved.12 These include the General Hospital of the People’s Liberation Army (No.301) that belongs directly to the Central Military Commission, all military branch general hospitals, general hospitals that belong to the seven regional military commands, hospitals affiliated with military medical universities, military hospitals coded with numbers, and armed police general hospitals. They have resolved many core technical issues in organ transplantation and have supported civilian hospitals with fresh organ supplies and technical assistance.

The 2016 report by Kilgour, Matas, and Gutmann explains, “A third explanation is a synthesis of the previous two. The Communist Party’s demonization and brutalization of Falun Gong and the health system’s insatiable demand for organs have lived in China in symbiosis. Each feeds off the other. The combination is a human rights and humanitarian disaster.”13

China has been the great cradle of over five thousand years of civilization. Today, that ethical spirit may be on the wane, but there are still many people in Chinese who are guided by moral principles. If we are to live in an ethical world, there is no better place to start for both the Chinese and the international community than by stopping the Chinese organ harvesting juggernaut.


"Huang Jiefu: Voluntary organ donation by citizens is a continuation of life under the sun Source: Phoenix Television, March 16, 2015"
黄洁夫:公民自愿器官捐献是阳光下的生命延续 来源:凤凰卫视 2015年03月16日
"The previous and present life of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Committee Source: CCTV network – Observer Dated: January 8, 2014 Reporter: Wang Lei"
中央政法委的前世今生 央视网-观察家 2014年01月08日 记者王磊
"Bloody Harvest/The Slaughter: An Update page 411~413 Authors: David Kilgour, Ethan Gutmann, and David Matas, June 22, 2016"
"Former 610 Office Head Li Dongsheng Indicted August 24, 2015"
李东生被公诉 明慧网 2015年8月24日
"China Human Organ Donation and Transplantation Commission was set up National Health and Family Planning Commission People’s Republic of China 2014-03-07"
《中国人体器官捐献与移植委员会成立》 中华人民共和国国家卫生和计划生育委员会 2014-03-07
"BBC China 3/10/2013 (in Chinese): China State Council announced organizational reform plans"
BBC中文网 —中国宣布国务院机构改革方案 2013年3月10日
"China Human Organ Donation and Transplantation Commission was set up National Health and Family Planning Commission People’s Republic of China 2014-03-07"
《中国人体器官捐献与移植委员会成立》 中华人民共和国国家卫生和计划生育委员会 2014-03-07
"Human Organ Transplant Ordinance The central government portal / Source: State Council Dated: April 6, 2007,"
《人体器官移植条例》 中央政府门户网站 /来源:国务院办公厅 2007年04月06日
"“Interim Provisions regarding the use of the death-row prisoners’ bodies or organs from corpses by the Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Health, and Ministry of Civil Affairs” Status: valid Publish date: October 9, 1984; validate date: October 9, 1984"
《最高人民法院, 最高人民检察院, 公安部, 司法部, 卫生部, 民政部关于利用死刑罪犯尸体或 尸体器官的暂行规定》 状态:有效 发布日期:1984-10-09 生效日期: 1984-10-09
"Military Doctor Discloses Content of Meeting of Central Military Committee on How to Deal with Foreign Religions Source: The Epoch Times 2006-05-07"
军医披露中央军委处理涉外宗教会议内容 大纪元 2006-05-07
"Forced Live Organ Harvesting Program in China is State-Orchestrated and Militarized"
"WOIPFG Releases List of 2098 Doctors in 100 PLA and Armed Police Hospitals Suspected of Live Organ Harvesting of Falun Gong Practitioners"
"Bloody Harvest/The Slaughter: An Update page 424~425 Authors: David Kilgour, Ethan Gutmann, and David Matas, June 22, 2016"