1996-09-20 00:00:00

A clandestinely ordained bishop in northeastern China together with other religious personnel who were held and interrogated last November were released shortly afterwards.

In January, UCA News reported on the detention of clandestinely ordained Bishop Andrew Han Jingtao of Siping in November 1995. He told a Hong Kong Catholic source in Changchun Aug. 15 that he was released after five hours of interrogation.

Bishop Han attributed the charges against him to an article he wrote in 1989 entitled "Proposal of a Professor." The bishop´s article urged the unification of the government-recognized open Church and the underground Church.

Public Security Bureau officials interrogated him in 1991 and again last November, both times for about five hours, he told the source.

The nuns who were arrested with him were released after one or two days. However, Father Chen Yunpeng of Baoding diocese, Hebei province, was only released in January after being detained for 50 days.

A nun told the source that when they were arrested, their home was searched and their religious books were confiscated.

Bishop Han, born in 1919, was ordained a priest in 1947. He was clandestinely ordained bishop of Siping, Jilin province, in the 1980s.

He was jailed from 1953 to 1980. After his release he taught Latin and Greek culture in Northeast Normal University in Changchun, the capital of Jilin province, 880 kilometers northeast of Beijing, until he retired in 1987.


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