An underground church advocate in China is freed.

By November 3, 2003

BEIJING, CHINA (MNN) — Mr. Xiao Bi-guang, “an advocate of the house-church Christians in China,” has been released from prison and has returned to his home in Beijing, amid international pressure, a religious rights watchdog said Thursday October 30.

In a statement send to Mission Network News (MNN) Voice of the Martyrs, which supports persecuted Christians, says it has learned from Xiao’s wife, Gou Qinghui, that “he was not beaten or physically abused during his incarceration.”

VOM sources, who were not identified, credited Xiao’s release directly to publicity as well as prayers and protests of Christians around the world. Xiao reported that police asked him, “How did you get your story on the internet?”

Police reportedly couldn’t find a link to prove that Xiao was involved in activities that “subverted the Chinese government and socialist system,” a charge that could carry long prison terms and possible a death sentence

Xiao expressed his gratitude for the prayers and support of Christian brothers and sisters around the world.

“This is proof positive that Christians around the world CAN make a difference with their prayers and their phone calls and letters to the Chinese embassy,” added VOM Spokesman Todd Nettleton.

“We are so pleased to see the Chinese government show respect for justice in this case, and we thank God that Brother Xiao has been reunited with his wife and four-year-old son.”

Mr. Zhang Yi-nan, who was arrested with Xiao on September 26, is still being held, and is still facing subversion charges. One source inside the Beijing PSB told VOM sources that, “Zhang doesn’t have a criminal problem. He has a mind problem. He is too superstitious.”

“We encourage Christians to continue their calls, faxes and letters to the Chinese embassy on behalf of Brother Zhang as well as brother Liu Feng-gang,” said Nettleton. “We know this can work, and we ask the Chinese government to release these innocent men immediately.”

The Voice of the Martyrs encourages American Christians to send a polite letter of protest on behalf of these Christians to:

Ambassador Yang Jiechi

Embassy of the People’s Republic of China

2300 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington DC 20008

Tel:(202) 328-2500 Fax:(202) 588-0032

Director of Religious Affairs: (202) 328-2512

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