Two Christians in China Serving Labor Camp Sentences for “Cult” Activities
Shaanxi Christians Sentenced to Labor Camp for “Cult” Activities, File Suit Against Local Authorities
In this case, two Christians from central China were thrown into labor camps for “re-education” and not even informed of their sentence until months later. Their family members have hired an attorney to try and have their sentence appealed.
09/12/2012 China (China Aid Association)- Two Christians from central China’s Shaanxi province who are serving labor camp sentences for “cult” activities are suing the local authorities for failing to inform them or their families of the punishment.
On Jan. 13, Liu Xinxing went to the home of Xue Yuxia in Guodong village, in the town of Hejiaji, Zizhou county, where the two women and some other Christians engaged in some Christian activities. Because of this, Liu and Xue were put under criminal detention by the county Public Security Bureau for “suspicion of organizing and using a cult to undermine law enforcement.”
A month later, on Feb. 13, Yulin’s Re-education through Labor Management Committee issued a decision statement, coded Yu Lao Zi (2012) No. 02, saying that Xue and Liu had joined a cult called “Total Scope Church,” and that, pursuant to Clause 3 of the “Supplementary Stipulations on Re-education through Labor,” State Council Document No. 56 (1980), the two were being sentenced 18 months of re-education through labor. This document, however, was never gien to Xue and Liu.
According to Liu, “They just told me to sign my name. As for what I was signing, I had no idea at all. And we never saw any decision statement for re-education through labor.”
Liu’s mother traveled from her hometown Henan province to the Zizhou county Public Security Bureau to get some information on her daughter, but the people handling this case refused to see her. It was not until the end of May 2012 that she learned through sources that Liu had already been sent to the provincial Women’s Re-education-Through-Labor Management Center of to serve her sentence.
Liu’s family hired the human rights attorneys on June 12 to provide legal assistance, and on June 13, they went to submit their administrative lawsuit to the Yuyang District Court of Yulin. The court has accepted the case, and a hearing was set for July 17. It was canceled, however, because the sister of the chief judge was involved in a traffic accident, and a new court date has not been set.