Government-sanctioned persecution of Christians has darkened the landscape of Xinjiang province in north-western China. Most recently, an estimated 30 house church leaders were arrested on 19 April in Aksu city as they met with four U.S. Christians.

The four U.S. Christians, including two pastors, were also arrested and later released, according to China Aid Association (CAA). On 20 April authorities released eight of the Chinese house church pastors but held at least six others accused of being “suspects involved in evil cult activities.” Pastors Zhao Xinglan, Huang Xiurong, Yang Tianlu, Wang Chaoyi, Lu Cuiling and He Sijun are being held for 37 days. They could be sentenced to one to three years of “re-education through labour.” Eyewitnesses told CAA that at least two of those arrested had bleeding noses and bruises from violence inflicted upon them at the interrogation site in Aksu. Over the last two years, a number of other house church Christians have been arrested in Xinjiang, and several foreign Christian workers have been expelled.


from Voice of the Martyrs