A Christian woman in China has been sentenced to serve three years in prisonfor “gathering a crowd to disturb public order” for her Bible study.
Mia Huichao was sentenced last week in the western Xinjiang region courts of the country, according to China Aid.
She was taken into police custody with four other Christians after officials said she was holding the Bible study without government approval.
Mia is not planning to appeal.
Recently, China’s government has been pursuing non-government sanctioned Christian gatherings and arresting pastors and Christians.
China Aid reported that several Christians were arrested in October and November and accused of being in “evil cults.”
China’s Revised Draft of Regulations on Religious Affairs went into effect in October and prohibits “"organizing citizens to attend religious training, conferences and activities abroad"; "preaching, organizing religious activities, and establishing religious institutions or religious sites at schools," and "providing religious services through the internet."
"The government wants to control everything, even the smallest aspects," one pastor, identified as Zhou, told China Aid in September. "One characteristic of this draft is the empowerment of local government bodies all the way down to the communities.
"This revision will further reduce the possibility of loosening religious control in China. It is becoming impossible."
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Publication date: January 3, 2017