Press Conference on July 22 of 2019 Given by The Church of Almighty God, a Religious Group Persecuted in China
1. Speeches at the press conference
2. Witnesses telling their story as victims: Xiao Rui and Zhao Lin
Speech on the Press Conference Held by The Church of Almighty God, a Religious Group Persecuted in China
“The Chinese government’s religious persecution is true. We are the witnesses of this fact: we were tortured and detained, and we fled here for freedom. The CCP government should immediately stop the persecution of Christians, and stop its despicable acts of using our family members to incite Korean media to make false propaganda. ”
- In recent years, the CCP is persecuting all religious faiths, with its suppression of Christianity including Catholicism reaching a peak. Even the state-approved Three-Self churches are not spared: Church buildings were demolished, a large number of crosses were removed, and countless Christians were dispersed and left without a gathering place—many crying and making prayers on the ruins of their meeting venues. Due to their rapid growth, some house churches were condemned as “xie jiao” and subsequently suppressed and banned. CCP’s propaganda uses rumors and slanders to portray these churches as “anti-social religions.” Under the comprehensive and cruel suppression of the CCP, many Christians were sentenced to prison and some were even beaten to death. In addition, countless Christians were rendered homeless, fleeing here and there. Many foreign missionaries, including those from South Korea, were arrested and deported.
- The Church of Almighty God (CAG) has been suffering from the CCP government’s manic suppression and persecution since its foundation 28 years ago. The CCP issued a large number of secret documents and launched many special campaigns against CAG. It has performed more than a million arrests of CAG Christians. Many of the Christians were tortured and subjected to forced indoctrination, with over a hundred death cases. Some 500,000 to 600,000 Christians have to flee from the CCP’s hunting year after year, unable to return home. Believers in God are subjected to criminal punishment for merely engaging in regular religious activities or possessing a religious book. Faced with the cruel persecution from the CCP, some CAG Christians resorted to fleeing abroad.
- The Chinese government has been non-stop in its religious persecution, yet it denies such facts and carries out deceptive propaganda overseas. Through various approaches, the CCP obtained the personal information of us Christians fleeing abroad and did its utmost to find our relatives in China, who were subjected to forced indoctrination or threatened with their work, pension, and the education and employment of our children. Through coercion and temptation, our family members came to South Korea multiple times to stage false demonstrations under the banner of “searching for relatives.” They distorted facts and claimed that China had religious freedom, falsely accused us to be “fake refugees,” and tried to force us to return to China. We are standing here today to tell people the truth of our situation as Christians fleeing abroad. Despite the CCP’s attempts to deceive the government, media, and people of South Korea through lies and rumors, we choose to express what is in our hearts in the most peaceful and rational way.
- There is absolutely no religious freedom in China. We were deprived of any freedom to worship God. All of us standing here are victims who personally experienced imprisonment, torture and all kinds of mistreatment in China. We are the witnesses of the CCP government’s persecution of religious faiths.
- By no means is it true that China is free from religious persecution and that people who came here to escape persecution are “false refugees.” The well-founded facts of CCP’s violation of human rights are supported by the U.S. Department of State Report on International Religious Freedom, reports submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Council by international NGOs with consultative status, and the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom hosted by the U.S. Department of State last week.
- Having stated above, we would like to make the followings appeals: