China Aid Association
(Zizhou, Shaanxi—March 18, 2014) A woman in China’s inland Shaanxi province went into hiding last week after her sister was detained; she believes police are using her sister’s detention to lure her to the police station in order to detain her as well.
Yesterday, China Aid reported that woman by the name of Enrong was detained on Thursday and charged with gathering a crowd to assault a state official. After the detention, police informed Enrong’s younger sister that she could come to the detention center and trade places with her sister (https://chinaaid.org/2014/03/shaanxi-believers-cases-resubmitted-for.html).
“They told her to come to trade places with her sister. Someone [from the church] told her she should not go there. If she did, she would be taken into custody,” a believer said on the condition of anonymity. “That’s why we can’t get into contact with her now. She has thrown away her cell phone.”
The believer said that church members assume the offer to allow the two women to trade places is really an attempt to lure the younger sister to the detention center so that police may detain her as well.
The charges against Enrong stem from her participation in a group inquiry at the Zizhou County Public Security Bureau on Nov. 15, 2013, along with more than 20 other church members. Among those church members were Jiang “Mao” He, Zhang Baolin and church pastor Feng Tiandong. The group was hoping to obtain items confiscated from Feng’s home on Dec. 24, 2011 when police raided a Christmas celebration held there.
Feng, who had gone into hiding in 2011 to avoid being apprehended, Jiang and Zhang were taken into custody in early December 2013 (https://chinaaid.org/2014/01/public-security-bureau-submits-arrest.html). The three were originally charged with organizing and using an evil cult organization to obstruct the law, but the charges were later changed to gathering a crowd to assault a state official. Lawyers say the current charge comes from the group not allowing the public security bureau director to escape over a wall.
Church members also told China Aid that they are afraid to hold gatherings. “Now we gather together secretly and don’t let [the authorities] know. For Christmas last year, people here in Zizhou dared not celebrate. [The police] went directly to our work units and asked us to sign in…every day,” Ms. Zhang, who asked for her first name to be kept anonymous, said.
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