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Friday December 07, 2007 CHINA: CHRISTIAN BOOKSTORE OWNER ARRESTEDOne of his employees also detained, her father beaten, in front of her 3-year-old son.

LOS ANGELES, December 7 (Compass Direct News) – Beijing Public Security Bureau (PSB) officials have detained the owner of a Christian bookstore located near the Olympic Village, along with one of his employees, according to a long-time friend of the businessman.

Ray Sharpe said authorities detained 37-year-old Shi Weihan late last week and have confiscated Christian literature from his bookstore as well as personal books from his home. Authorities at the Haidian district substation of the Beijing PSB have refused to tell his family the charges against him or where he is being held.

Shi had never had any problems with authorities in the past, Sharpe said. His bookstore operated legally, and he sold only books for which he had obtained government permission. Authorities also confiscated his computer and financial records.

“It seems the government can’t make up its mind about how free it wants to be,” Sharpe told Compass. “Both his office and his home are not far from the Olympic Village, and my personal opinion is that this has to do with all the other recent arrests and the government not wanting a single dissident voice to appear at the Olympics.”

Shi also works as a travel agent, and authorities may also be investigating his promotion of foreign travel to China, Sharpe said.

Shi’s wife, Zhang Jing, and several employees were detained and released, but one female employee, Tian Hongxia, remains in custody, Sharpe said.

“Her father was seriously beaten when she was arrested at his home,” Sharpe said. “She has a 3-year-old son who was very upset during the whole scene, so children do see how brutally they manhandle people in China.”

Bob Fu, president of the China Aid Association, said in a statement that Shi’s case is not an isolated incident.

“This is another case of religious persecution in the 2008 Summer Olympics host city, Beijing, in the name of so-called illegal publication,” said Fu, a former pastor of both Shi and his wife in Beijing. “We urge the international community to pressure the Chinese government to respect the rule of law and release Mr. Shi immediately.”

Zhang, Shi’s wife, has been detained for interrogation twice about Christian literature found in their home and in Shi’s office and store. PSB officials have threatened to arrest Zhang again, and she and her two daughters have gone into hiding. About 20 officers first raided their home at 5 a.m. on November 28.

One of the couple’s daughters, 7-year-old En Mei, was born in the United States and holds a U.S. passport. As a result, U.S. Embassy personnel have told family members they will try to make contact with Shi. The couple’s other daughter is 11.

Christian sources said the family is concerned that Shi may be facing danger of diabetic shock. Authorities have provided no information to the family about his medical condition. PSB officials have been known to use deprivation and torture to force detainees to reveal information about others.

Sharpe said Shi, an active Christian, has shied away from China’s registered, Three-Self Patriotic Movement church as he had heard horror stories from friends in the legal church.

“He has a number of friends who have suffered and been pressured by the government church,” Sharpe said.


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 December 17, 2007 6:26 PM

World Update Webcast

December 2007

Presented by journalist Andrew Boyd

RI's latest webcast features a special report on our late President Rev Dr Rob Frost, a passionate campaigner on behalf of the persecuted church. This includes an extract from our latest video Pray for China, which Rob completed shortly before his death.

Indonesia: A court has ruled that it is blasphemous to pray that Muslim leaders would become Christians. Forty-one Christian leaders have been sentenced to five years.

Pakistan: Death threats by militants force a Christian school to close.

North Korea: A group of nine young Christians have disappeared in the capital Pyongyang.

The next webcast will be available at the beginning of January.

The webcast is in Windows Media Video format (wmv), and plays using Windows Media Player by clicking on the links below. It is also available as a podcast (see below).

Download China petitionIf you wish to download the file to your own computer, right click to 'save target as' or 'save link as'.

Download World Update Webcast - December 2007 (38mb)

Copy this link and paste it into your aggregatorGET WORLD UPDATE AS A PODCAST

You can subscribe to RI's monthly World Update Webcast as a podcast. Just drag or copy this link, or the podcast button opposite, into your iTunes application (or another podcast aggregator, like Juice or Doppler. Your podcast software will then automatically download the webcast to your computer each month.


DownloadNOVEMBER 2007

RI's November webcast features a special report from Nigeria as Christians in Maiduguri prepare for the possibility of further attacks against them. 

Eritrean gospel singer Helen Berhane is granted asylum in Denmark. 

Chinese house church activist Hua Huiqi has been brutally attacked by security guards. Plus news from Pakistan.

Download World Update Webcast - November 2007 (38mb)

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 December 17, 2007 6:55 PM

Donna ma bey this should be on the front page so every one can see the videos. Can we take up Petitions and send to the Governments of the Persecuted Christians in different Country's? We must do something and Pray also. Any suggestions?

Father in the name of Jesus Christ, please give us ways to help instead of just doing nothing. These Christians are really suffering. God please help them stand strong in their faith for Jesus amen.

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 February 11, 2008 4:37 AM

Location: China
Arrested: July 2007
Days Imprisoned: document.write(Math.round(iDiff));210
Country Info

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 February 11, 2008 4:38 AM

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Click here to view prisoners who have been released  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 April 28, 2010 10:33 AM

April 28, 2010

Dear Donna
‘Pinpricks’ of Truth Making Way into North Korea

As refugees from North Korea and activists from Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) gather in Seoul, South Korea this week to highlight human rights violations in the hermit kingdom, there are signs that North Korean citizens are accessing more truth than was previously thought. A recent survey by the Peterson Institute found that a startling 60 percent of North Koreans now have access to information outside of government propaganda.

Kim Seung Min of Free North Korea Radio said in a press statement, “North Koreans are increasingly finding out that their misery is a direct result of the Kim Jong-Il regime, not South Korea and America.” The radio station broadcasts into the country for five hours a day, adding to information gleamed by refugees and merchants who cross the border regularly to buy Chinese goods.

The radio station is a partner in the North Korea Freedom Coalition (NKFC), which is holding its annual North Korea Freedom Week events this week in Seoul. “We set out to double the radio listenership of 8 or 9 percent,” said NKFC Co-Chair Suzanne Scholte. She described the flow of information as “pinpricks in a dark veil over North Korea... Now those pinpricks are becoming huge holes.” Scholte adds, “This is a spiritual conflict as well as a physical one – some people didn’t want us to call it freedom week. But we’re making a statement … God gives us freedom by the very nature of being human and North Koreans are entitled to that too.” Read the full story from Compass News.

Father, we praise and thank You for the fantastic news of more information entering into North Korea. We give You the glory for this. We pray for the North Korea Freedom Coalition to accomplish its goals, and ask that You would continue to open up the hearts and minds of those who don’t know the Gospel, and put in them an understanding of the true freedom found in Christ.

Buddhist Extremists in Bangladesh Beat & Take Christians Captive

Urgent Call to Prayer:
Since April 16th, Buddhist members of an armed rebel group and their sympathizers are holding three tribal Christians captive in a pagoda in Bangladesh after severely beating them in an attempt to force them to return to Buddhism. They are to be kept in the pagoda for 15 to 20 days as punishment for having left the Buddhist religion, according to Christian sources.

Father, we pray for those held captive: Pastor Shushil Jibon Talukder, Bimol Kanti Chakma, and Laksmi Bilas Chakma. We ask that they will not be shaken in their turmoil, but instead encouraged by Your Holy Spirit to stand firm in their faith. We ask that You would intervene and give them strength and perseverance as they suffer for Your Name. Give the rebel group an awakening, and let them see the Truth shine through their captives. 

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