January 9, 2010
Last Updated: 1/12/2010
HEBEI--In the afternoon of January 8, 2010, (Beijing Time) 30 leaders of the Chinese House Church Alliance (CHCA) were detained in Handan city, Hebei province. According to one detained pastor, who was able to use his cellphone briefly to notify an outside contact, a group of officers from the Handan City Public Security and Religious Affairs Bureaus broke into their leaders' meeting place where the 30 men and women were having a bible study, and forcefully took them to an unknown interrogation center within the city.
The 30 detained leaders include Pastor Li Cuixiang, from the Handan area, and Elder Wu Jianghe, from Beijing. The informing pastor reported that the PSB were threatening some of the detained pastors with 15 days of administrative detention. Immediately after relating the situation of the 30 pastors to the outside contact, the call abruptly cut off. ChinaAid and sources believe the pastor's cell phone was confiscated, as it could not be reached later on. President of the CHCA Pastor Zhang "Bike" Mingxuan calls upon the Handan government to release the church leaders immediately.
UPDATE ON 30 DETAINED CHCA LEADERS: ChinaAid received a report at 8:30 PM CST (1/12/2010) that three of the thirty detained pastors in Handan City, Hebei, received administrative detention on January 12, 2010: Sister Li Cuixiang was sentenced to 15 days, and pastors Wu Jianghe (from Beijing) and Zheng (from Zhengzhou, Henan) were sentenced to 10 days each. A few pastors have been released, but the remaining number of pastors in detention is unknown.
ChinaAid echoes Pastor Zhang's request, and urges the international community to voice their concerns for these persecuted house church leaders, and call for their immediate release.
To contact the Chinese Embassy in Washington, D.C., send a message to:
Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong
3505 International Place, NW, Washington, D.C. 20008
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Fax: (202) 588-9760
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Tracy Oliver, Media Coordinator
Tel: (267) 210-8278, or Tracy@ChinaAid.org
Mark Shan, CAA Spokesperson
Tel: (267) 205-5210, or Mark@ChinaAid.org
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