Photo: Wang Qiang’s Notice of Residential Surveillance in a Designated Residence (ChinaAid source)
(Linfen, Shanxi province—November 4, 2022) On the morning of November 1, Wang Qiang, a staff member of Linfen Covenant House Church, abruptly lost communication with his family and other believers in the church. Auhtorities placed him under Residential Surveillance at a Designated Location. This is the fourth member of Linfen Covenant House Church arrested since August.
24 hours after Wang Qiang’s initial disappearance, his family contacted the Public Security Bureau to ask whether Wang Qiang was arrested, but they did not receive a clear answer. Therefore, Wang Qiang’s family and other church members analyzed that Wang Qiang may have been suddenly stopped and arrested by the police on the road without any time to inform anyone.
Wang Qiang’s wife, Wen Huijuan, is currently seven months pregnant. She has to take care of their eldest child while preparing to give birth to the second child soon. The sudden loss of contact with her husband made the situation very difficult for her.
Soon their suspicions were confirmed. On the afternoon of November 2, Wang Qiang’s wife, Wen Huijuan, was notified that Wang Qiang had been placed under residential surveillance at a designated location by the Linfen City Public Security Bureau on suspicion of “fraud.” The notice states:
According to the provisions of Article 75 of the Criminal Procedure Law of the People’s Republic of China, on November 2, 2022, Wang Qiang, who was suspected of fraud, was subjected to residential surveillance in a designated location by our bureau.
Since the outdoor “Family Camp” activity of Linfen Covenant House Church was dismantled by the police on the evening of August 19, the persecution of the church by relevant departments in Linfen City continued to expand. Li Jie and Han Xiaodong, two preachers of Linfen Covenant House Church, were first placed under residential surveillance at a designated residence and then sent to a detention center, where they were charged on suspicion of fraud. On October 28, Wu Tingting, a staff member of the church, was also taken by the police and is said to have been detained for fraud. But the family has not been notified in writing or received any phone calls.
At present, church leaders and ordinary believers are facing tremendous pressure from the department handling this case handling. Almost everyone from the church kept from signing any statement. Some brothers and sisters were placed under severe pressure from their workplace, their family members, and relatives and were forced to write down reports stating that they were “victims” and accusing church preachers of defrauding their money. They also had to sign a pledge never to attend Covenant House Church again.
~Yu Bing, Special Correspondent of ChinaAid