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Tortured House Church Leader Testifies for the First Time;

(Feb. 07, 2005)NEWS RELEASE
China Aid Association, Inc.
PO Box 8513 (boxun.com)

Midland, TX 79708
(432) 689-6985
(267) 205-5210
Fax: (432) 522-1329

Contact: Bob Fu
[email protected]
(267) 205-5210

UN Releases Formal Opinion on Church Historian's Arbitrary Detention

Midland, Texas (CAA)-Feb. 7, 2005
Tortured House Church Leader Testifies for the First Time;
UN Releases Formal Opinion on Church Historian's Arbitrary Detention

Thursday, February 10, 2005 at the National Press Club in Washington DC, a 34- year old member of an underground house church in China will recount her experience of torture, sexual abuse and arbitrary imprisonment by Chinese police.

Ms. Liu Xianzhi, a member of the South China Church, escaped from China last month after serving six years in a labor camp making Christmas lights and rugs. In 2001, police arrested Ms. Liu and tortured her into falsely testifying that the pastor of the South China Church, Gong Shengliang, "raped" her.

Ms. Liu stated that her experience in prison continues to haunt her, "When I hear dogs barking, loud knocking on the door, the sound of police sirens, or I see men who are not wearing shirts (like my interrogators), I have an overwhelming sense of fear." She is one of 8903 members of the South China Church who police have arrested for their religious beliefs, including Pastor Gong, who is serving a life sentence in prison based on multiple confessions obtained through torture.

The Honorable Senator Sam Brownback, along with other Congressional leaders, will express their grave concern over religious persecution in China. Senator Brownback is Chairman of the Helsinki Commission and serves on the Committee on Appropriations; the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation; the Committee on Foreign Relations; and the Joint Economic Committee.

Bob Fu, president of the China Aid Association and a former prisoner of religious conscience, will also release a formal opinion by the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention in the case of a leading historian of the underground church, Mr. Yinan Zhang. Zhang was arrested September 26, 2003 and sentenced to two years of re-education through labor October 27, 2003 by an administrative tribunal in Henan Province. The government convicted him of attempting to subvert the national government" by misinterpreting statements culled from his personal prayer journals and Christian essays.

For more information, please contact 432-689-6985

Address for Thursday' s Press Conference:
Murrow Room, National Press Club
529 14th Street NW
Washington, DC 20045

Time: 2:00 pm
Bio. And Excerpts of Liu Xianzhi and her Speech:
• Female, 33, Tianmen City Hubei Province, South China Church member.
• Arrested and sentenced three years re-education through labor as " illegal evangelist" in 1996 in Shayang labor camp, Hubei province.
• Arrested on May 27, 2001. First trial on Dec.25, 2001, charged with “organizing and using evil cult organization to obstruct the implementation of the law,” received a two-year sentence.
• Second trial on Oct. 10, the charge was dismissed and Liu Xianzhi was proclaimed innocent by the Jingmen City Intermediate Court but was immediately taken away by the Jingmen police to Shayang labor camp to be re-educated through labor.
• Released on Feb.1, 2004
• Fled from China to the US in Jan. 7, 2005
“I was taken to Zhongxiang Police Training Center. 6 or 7 male policemen started to question me in their dormitory. One asked me, “Do you know why we arrest you?” I said, “Because I believe in Jesus.” He slapped my face when he heard this. He said, “Do you know what age we are in today? And you still believe in Jesus?” I didn’t answer him back.

I was put in shackles and the policemen ordered me to walk before them in the room. The shackles were heavy; after a little while I had to slow down, but they wouldn’t let me. They pushed me from this side to the other side while laughing at me. I was so exhausted and ended up laying on the ground. The shackles also cut deeply into my flesh, and my ankle began to bleed. You can see the scar here.

They also picked me up by my hair, so the weight of my whole body was held up by my hair. I could hardly breathe, then they put me down, but kept on pressuring me to confess I had sexual relationship with Pastor Gong. When I told them I didn’t have any improper relationship with him, they pulled my hair again, later I lost my consciousness.

When I refused to read the confession that they had prepared for me beforehand, they threatened me by saying, “Now, I can beat you to death, and pull you out and bury you somewhere, that even your family wouldn’t know where you are. Now your South China Church is in our hands, including your pastor. He was also arrested!”

When I told them I had no sexual relationship with Pastor Gong at all, they used an electrical rod to beat me, on my head, my breast, and my buttock. I was knocked to the floor, then they pulled me up and tore my clothes open. They even pulled my bra, and I cried. (boxun.com)

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