On August 23, 2009, Wu Xia, a Christian from The Church of Almighty God (CAG) was arrested by officers of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) because of her belief in Almighty God. She was murdered while in custody at the age of 57. Prior to her death, Wu Xia lived in the Sucheng District of Suqian City, Jiangsu Province. She joined The Church of Almighty God in 2003 and was an enthusiastic host for other Christians. According to an informed source, throughout Wu Xia’s life she was loyal and honest, and her friends and family had great respect for her.
Arrested and Then Killed for Believing in God
In mid-August 2009, two local Christians were followed and then arrested by the officers from the Xiguan Police Station in Shuyang County, Suqian City. Before long the officers found out that Wu Xia believed in Almighty God and had hosted other Christians.
Around 3 p.m. on August 23, the police from the Suqian Public Security Bureau Economic and Technological Development Zone Branch barged into Wu Xia’s home on the pretext of inquiring about some situations, and then arrested her while she was there alone.
According to Wu Xia’s family, a few days later the police told her daughter and her son-in-law to go to the Liyuan Police Station in the Sucheng District of Suqian City (it has now been merged with the Huanghe Police Station in the same district and city) to urge Wu Xia to provide information on the whereabouts of another two Christians she had hosted, wanting to get materials from their computers.
She told her daughter and son-in-law that while she had been detained, the police deprived her of sleep, and constantly shined high-wattage lights directly into her eyes, trying to force her to divulge information on other Christians. But her mind was made up, and she would rather die than become a Judas and betray God. She removed the jewelry she was wearing such as gold earrings and a gold ring and gave them to her daughter, telling her daughter and son-in-law her wishes for her death and telling them to stop trying to persuade her. When her family saw that she was resolute and the police was stubbornly refusing to let her go, they had no choice but to leave.
Her Family Demanded an Explanation, the CCP Denied Responsibility
At about 9 p.m. on August 31, Wu Xia’s family members were notified by the police that she was having a hypertensive crisis, her life was in danger, and she had been sent to the Suqian City People’s Hospital for emergency treatment. They rushed to the hospital, but the police and doctors refused to let them see her. Sometime after midnight that same night one doctor came to tell her family that she had died after a failed rescue attempt.
The police threatened her family members, saying, “If you dare say that Wu Xia was tortured to death by the police, then we will publicize that she believed in Almighty God. This is something opposed by the government—what the government most hates is people who believe in Almighty God. They are the number one criminals in the eyes of the government, so then your entire family will come to a bad end!” Under the pressure of the police, Wu Xia’s family didn’t dare complain or say a word.
That same night, the police took Wu Xia’s remains to the mortuary.
The next day the police just informed a few of Wu Xia’s close relatives to take a quick look at her, and then they prepared her remains for cremation. Her nephew, who was studying law, objected to the cremation and went to the Liyuan Police Station, Suqian City’s Sucheng District Public Security Sub-Bureau, as well as Suqian Public Security Bureau and the Provincial Department of Public Security a number of times to argue the case. All the o cers said the exact same thing—Wu Xia was arrested because of her belief in Almighty God, she died in police custody due to illness, her death had nothing to do with the police, they were not responsible, and that she had died in vain. They also said that believing in Almighty God was a serious, important case, and cynically asserted that the family wouldn’t find justice no matter which department they turned to. Her nephew continued to escalate the case and said that if he couldn’t win the lawsuit in China, he’d take it overseas through his former classmates. For fear of causing a stir, the police reluctantly agreed to pay 300,000 RMB of restitution to Wu Xia’s family.