Li Hongzhi (Chinese:; pinyin: Li Hóngzhì) (born in Gongzhuling city, Jilin, China) is the founder of Falun Gong (or Falun Dafa), a system of "mind-body cultivation" related to the qigong tradition. Li Hongzhi introduced Falun Dafa on May 13, 1992 at the fifth middle school in Changchun, Jilin. From 1992 to 1994 he traveled throughout China, giving lectures and teaching Falun Gong exercises. In 1999 the Chinese government estimated the number of Falun Gong practitioners to be approximately 70 million. Since July 1999, the Chinese government has conducted a widespread persecution of Falun Gong. Today, he lives in New York City, United States.