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Purdue professor releases statement concerning human rights lawyer's televised confession

Friday, February 26, 2016

Zhang Kai
(Stock photo courtesy of
Zhang Kai)
China Aid
By Rachel Ritchie

(West Lafayette, Indiana—Feb. 26, 2016) Purdue sociology professor and founding director of Purdue’s Center on Religion and Chinese Society, Dr. Fenggang Yang, released the following statement regarding the televised confession made by human rights lawyer Zhang Kai yesterday:

Zhang Kai is a friend of mine. He spent a year with me as a visiting scholar of the Center on Religion and Chinese Society at Purdue University in 2013-2014. He was one of the most courageous lawyers in defending Christian churches in Wenzhou whose rooftop crosses were facing forceful removal by the authorities. It is apparent that all Zhang Kai did was providing legal counsel to the willing churches, encouraging their leaders to use the existing law and regulations to defend their own rights. He urged both Christians and government officials to abide by the law and do not do anything beyond legal boundaries. His purported confession on Wenzhou Television on February 25, 2016 appears to me to be scripted and he appears to be physically exhausted. The few “evidences” shown in the television program all appear to be dated before 2013, so that even if they were true documents they have nothing to do with Zhang Kai’s activities in Wenzhou between August 2014 and August 2015. I urge Wenzhou authorities abide by the existing Chinese law and release Zhang Kai immediately.

Fenggang Yang

February 25, 2016

China Aid exposes human rights abuses, such as those experienced by Zhang Kai, in order to promote religious freedom and rule of law in China.

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"Bob Fu has dedicated his life to bringing freedom of religion to the Chinese people. His story is a testimony to the power of faith and an inspiration to people struggling to break free from oppression."
—Mrs. Laura Bush

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