On October 21, the University of VA (UVA) School of Law held its first Human Rights week and included the topic of China’s forced organ harvesting practices. David Matas, co-author of “An Update: Bloody Harvest/The Slaughter,” and UVA medical school professor Dr. Joshua Li spoke about China’s ongoing killing of innocents through organ transplantation. Matas described his experience investigating the transplant programs of hundreds of hospitals in China to determine the ongoing existence and extent of China’s forced organ harvesting practices. Dr. Li concluded the presentation discussing subjugated minority groups in China who are the primary targets of organ harvesting, including Falun Gong, the largest persecuted group.
Matas also spoke at the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on October 27 about what can legally be done to stop China’s transplantation crimes. Matas detailed how various international treaties and legislation created in the U.S., such as the 2019 H.R.2121 ‑ STOP Organ Trafficking Act and the U.S. Global Magnitsky Act of 2016 could be useful in penalizing officials involved in forced organ harvesting.
Matas noted that while there are relevant legal instruments found around the globe which may be impactful in addressing China’s transplantation crimes, there are too many loopholes in these pieces of legislation so that the perpetrators have effective immunity. He declared, “That still needs to change.”