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ChinaAid, a religious freedom watchdog group, published a smartphone video this week that showed Chinese officials conducting a violent raid on a church in Fujian province, according to Breitbart News.
Eyewitnesses claim police did not present a warrant. The raid reportedly occurred in the city of Xiamen against the Xingguang Church.
The invaders are accused of “assaulting congregants, stealing their phones to prevent them from documenting the raid, and dragging people out of the service.”
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The venue is one of the famed “house churches” in China, with services held at a private residence.
ChinaAid described the raid, which was evidently captured on a phone the authorities were unable to confiscate or uploaded before they could take the phone away:
In a video taken at the scene, officers and attendees of Xingguang Church shout as they engage in a physical altercation. As they block the entrance, officials drag a Christian to the door, with other congregants fighting along with him.
The Christian men guarding the door were beaten and pinned down. Officers confiscated phones and used brutal force against some Christian women as well.
Xingguang Church’s meeting place is located in a private residence, and neighbors of the location where the service was being held filmed the encounter. Police broke down barriers and dragged brought three people out.
During the proceedings, the officers did not show any warrants. The church was later banned.
At least one of the beaten Christians had to seek medical treatment. He also filed a police report.
Fox News noted that a pastor in Hunan province was arrested for “subversion” last month after his home was raided, and there have been numerous other examples of Chinese officials using bureaucratic excuses to destroy churches and confiscate religious materials.
According to Radio Free Asia (RFA), “hundreds of police” were involved in the raid, and “an estimated nine people were detained” without clear charges.