Radio Free China

Human Rights and Religious Freedom News

China Plans Crackdown on House Church Leaders and Human Rights Activists

Posted by radiofreechina on August 24, 2008

By Jeremy Reynalds
Correspondent for ASSIST News Service
SURREY, ENGLAND (ANS) — At the height of the Beijing Olympics there is news emerging of a secret directive indicating a nationwide campaign to crack down on four groups considered to be “unstable social elements” by the Chinese authorities.

Human rights organization Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) said in a news release that according to a report from China Aid Association (CAA) the directive, issued by the Political and Legal Committee of the Central Committee of the CPC, targets house church leaders, petitioners, human rights defenders and political dissidents.

It was issued to all law enforcement agents and bodies, and follows a speech on June 16 by Zhou Yongkang, head of the Political and Legal Committee of the CPC calling for “extraordinary measures” to be taken against unstable elements in China.

CSW’s Advocacy Director, Tina Lambert, said in in the news release, “The timing of the news of this directive, coming as it does only days after China confiscated Bibles from four Americans at Kunming International Airport, and at the height of the Olympics, highlights China’s disregard for the views of the international community.”

She added, “It is also a stark reminder of the restrictions facing Chinese house churches and the ongoing violations of international standards of human rights in China. House church Christians are not a threat to the stability of Chinese society and it is time that China begins to take its place as a world leader in upholding rather than undermining international standards.”

For more information about Christian Solidarity worldwide, go to http://www.csw.org.uk

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