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Ten more Christians from China's Fushan Church arrested

by Staff
October 29, 2009
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( - Church members of the Fushan Church in Linfen City, China continue to face detention and intimidation from Public Security Bureau officials.

On October 10, officials offered to release ten church leaders who were arrested in late September following an attack on their church site, on the condition that one of the female leaders be held until further notice. The leaders refused to leave behind Pastor Yang Rongli, stating, "We are one team in the one body of Christ! We won't leave her behind alone. We will not leave prison without her."

The officials then arrested Pastor Yang's youngest sister, Yang Linli, and ransacked another pastor's home. On October 11, ten more church members were arrested. Officials blamed Pastor Yang for the raids and arrests, and threatened the leaders with further violence if they did not comply with their orders.

Yang Linli was finally released on October 16 and ordered to not petition on behalf of her sister or the other detained Christians and cease further "illegal activities." Pastor Yang and another church leader, Hua Mei, were then formally accused of "illegal building and disturbing the social order by organizing masses."

The next day, five other church leaders were sentenced to criminal detention. Three have since been released on parole. At last report, nine Christians remain in detention and the whereabouts of the ten Christians detained on October 11 remain unknown.

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