April 14th, 2008 09:38 EST
Court date scheduled for House Church Christian
XINJIANG -- CAA has learned the first trial regarding a Uygur House Church Christian, Wusiman Yiming's appeal will be held at Kashi People's Court on April 16 by Judges from Hetian city, Xinjiang. In September of 2007, Wusiman Yiming was sentenced to criminal detention "for the crime of divulging State secrets" by the State Security Bureau of Southern Xinjiang Hetian City. He was sentenced last November to two years re-education through labor by the Re-education Labor Committee of Hetian City.
Beijing attorney Zhang Kai was hired by the family to file for the appeal, which was finally approved on March 20, 2008. On March 23, 2008 Wusiman Yiming's wife, Nu Er Gu Li, traveled more than 300 miles to the Kashi detention centre from Hetian to relay the news of the reconsideration. She reported that Wusiman Yiming's situation is very bad, as he suffers from malnutrition and an obvious hand injury.
Due to the sensitivity of the case, only legal representatives will be allowed to attend the trial. Zhang Kai was originally barred from the court for not being able to speak the Uyghur language, fortunately, after several rounds of negotiations, the court allowed to let Zhang attend the trial with the accompaniment of a translator. Zhang has continually faced harassment by government officials and is now considering whether or not to continue with the case.
CAA will continue to monitor the situation, as well as that of Uygur Christian Alimujiang Yimiti, who may face execution in Xinjiang this year. Meanwhile we appeal to the Beijing government to investigate these cases, and to order the Xinjiang Government to stop the persecution and release these innocent Uygur Christians as soon as possible.
"Those who know brother Wusiman Yiming and Alimujiang all recognize they are patriotic Chinese citizens," said Bob Fu, "to accuse them as suspects of separatists or treason offenders is nothing but trumpeted up charges as a cover for pre-Olympic religious persecution against peaceful House Church believers among Chinese minorities."
To express your concern please contact:
Chinese Embassy in Washington DC
Address: 2201 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W., Washington D.C. 20007
Tel: (202) 338-6688, (202) 5889760
Fax: (202) 588-9760
Issued by CAA April 14, 2008