By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent
BEIJING, CHINA (Worthy News)-- Visitation rights for the family of a prominent Chinese house church leader incarcerated in Xinjiang have been severely curtailed, according to International Christian Concern.
Last week, Chinese prison authorities informed Alimujiang Yimiti's wife that she and her children would only be allowed to visit her husband for 10 minutes once every three months in lieu of their 20 minute monthly visit.
"The new restrictions on family visits to Alimujiang announced by Chinese authorities last week are simply one more indicator of how little Chinese officials truly respect the rule of law," said Ryan Morgan, ICC's Regional Manager for Southeast Asia. "This man has been wrongfully imprisoned on trumped-up charges for almost five years simply because of his religious beliefs. He was also sentenced in secret, beaten up, and denied access to his family for more than two years at one point. With cases like this, how can China possibly claim to protect religious freedom?"
A convert from Islam, Yimiti was arrested in 2008 for engaging in Christian activities, but was officially sentenced to 15 years on charges of "illegally providing state secrets to foreigners". As a result, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention declared that Yimiti's arbitrary arrest was a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.