.- According to a press release yesterday, from the U.S. based Cardinal Kung Foundation, Bishop Yao Liang, 82, was arrested again by Chinese authorities on July 30. The Bishop serves as auxiliary to the underground Roman Catholic Diocese of Xiwanzi in Hebei Province.
Bishop Liang, who was previously arrested on March 31, 2005, is now being detained in Zhangjiakou City.
The Kung Foundation reports that on August 1, 2006, Father Li Huisheng, 33, an underground priest in the Diocese of Xiwanzi, was also arrested. His whereabouts are unknown. The underground Catholic community responded to the arrests with group-protests and petitions for an immediate release of Bishop Yao Liang and Father Li Huisheng.
In reaction to the protests, at approximately 2 o’clock in the morning on August 2nd, the public security bureau mobilized around 500 police, attacked the Catholic community in Zhangjiakou, Zhangbei County, and arrested some 90 underground Catholic faithful.
In the shuffle, two male Catholics were seriously injured and required emergency hospital care. One pregnant woman had a miscarriage.
Approximately 70 of those arrested have now been released. The other 20 are still being detained.
Joseph Kung, the President of the Cardinal Kung Foundation, said in a statement yesterday: "Repeatedly arresting an advanced age bishop, arresting a priest for his religious belief and activities, and then arresting some 90 Catholic faithful and seriously injuring some is clear evidence of total violation of human rights in China.”
Kung said that the actions follow another reported attack on a Protestant church on July 20th.
“This kind of atrocity has become so routine in China I believe that the governments and the corporations of freedom loving countries must urgently take into greater consideration - consistently and persistently, and not haphazardly - all human rights violations, including these reported above, when forming and implementing their respective political and commercial decisions of their China policies.”
Moreover, Kung said, “once again I urge the Olympic Committee to consider canceling the Games in China in order to preserve their good name and spirit. Otherwise, the noble name of ‘Olympic’ could be severely tarnished by its association with religious persecution and human rights violations in China."