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08/17/2021 China (International Christian Concern) – An elder from the heavily targeted Early Rain Covenant Church (ERCC) was briefly detained on August 14 for his participation in a June funeral.

Elder Li Yingqiang and his family have been dealing with the local authorities on a regular basis, after he was released on bail in August 2019 after eight months of imprisonment over trumped up charges.

According to China Aid, at approximately 7 am on August 14, police officers from Longquanshan in Deyang City took Li Yingqiang from his home. Officers detained him at their station for more than seven hours before releasing him shortly after 2 pm. The reason for authorities to summon elder Li was related to a funeral he attended at Chengdu in June. The real reason, however, remains “unknown.”

Before he was sent home, the police stressed to him that he should avoid going to Chengdu (where ERCC is based) and stay at home during the pandemic; he should not allow anyone to join religious activities at his home; and he should practice his faith under the legal framework and not participate in illegal religious activities.

In response, he asked the police to prepare proper legal documents should they plan to summon him again. He might refuse to cooperate if they fail to do so.

Li’s family settled in Deyang after the Spring Festival earlier this year. During the first few months, local police did not harass him. But the latest interrogation suggests that from now on, he and his family will be closely watched and can be harassed whenever.

For interviews, please contact Addison Parker: press@persecution.org.