China releases five Christians who had previously been detained over their protestation against demolition of a church. These Christians had spent months behind the bars, were released unexpectedly. These Christians were arrested in China’s Zhejiang province.
Christian charity group China Aid reports that Chinese Christians identified as, Ji Qingcao, Ji Qingcou, Ou Jinsi, Mei Xueshun, and He Lijing who are members of Yazhong Church were previously arrested in last April as they had protested against the government backed demolition of Guankou Church. These five Christians were charged of “obstructing government administration” and “disturbing public order.”
A China Aid reporter states: “A few days ago, I’d heard that the five Christians had been released in the past few days. I feel like the government is trying to pacify the people before the summit meeting. Since the summit meeting will be held here on September 4, the government begins to worry that they have detained the Christians for too long. The local government was concerned about petitions organized by the family members, thinking higher officials would pressure them.”
In a separate incident, another Christian Wen Xiaowu, leader of a house church in Rui’an is currently in detention and the authorities have provided no news about him since his arrest on April 15. Authorities had detained Wen, along with his wife, Xiang Lihua, and their son. The Christian family was charged of “gathering a crowd to disturb public order.”
Bob Fu, President of China Aid urged the Communist government to release the remaining Christians as he stated: “With next month’s G20 summit being held in China, we urge the United States to ask the Chinese government to immediately release those who were sentenced and those who are about to be tried in the next few days, including attorney Li Heping. The Chinese regime should also immediately stop mistreating their family members, including their wives and children.”