Imprisoned Pastor´s Appeal Resumes –
On September 6, the lawyer for imprisoned Baptist Pastor Zaur Balaev expressed optimism as the appeals process began in Sheki Appeal Court in Azerbaijan. According to Forum 18 News service, Gazalfar Rzaev said, “Of course I am optimistic.” Illya Zenchenko, head of Azerbaijan´s Baptist Union, was also hopeful Balaev´s two-year sentence, on charges he assaulted five police officers, would be overturned. However, Zenchenko does fear Balaev might not be fully exonerated. He told Forum 18 News, “This is a dilemma for the court. Clearing Balaev would mean incriminating the police officers who falsely testified against him.” On August 8, Balaev was convicted under Article 315, Part 1 of the Criminal Code, which punishes the application or threat of application of violence against a state representative when he or she is carrying out official duties. Balaev was sentenced to two years in prison. Pray for Pastor Balaev and his family while he is in prison awaiting the outcome of his appeal. Ask God to encourage believers in Azerbaijan. Isaiah 54:7, 2 Timothy 1:7
Forum 18 News
House Church Leader in Xinjiang Formally Arrested, Church Leaders Released –
XINJIANG – On August 31, house church leader Zhou Heng was formally arrested for receiving three tons of Bibles. He is currently detained at Xishan Detention Center. According to China Aid Association (CAA), Zhou Heng´s formal arrest notice accused him of “illegal business operations.” CAA reported, “Our contacts recently spoke with a released inmate who shared a cell with Brother Zhou. He reported that Zhou was severely beaten by inmates and prison guards.” Prior to his arrest on August 3, Zhou Heng managed a bookstore called Yayi Christian Book Room and sold religious books. “Local authorities have closed the bookstore. The Bibles Zhou was collecting were reportedly donated by South Korean churches and were intended for distribution to local believers free of charge. However, the Chinese government only allows officially sanctioned (state) churches to print and distribute a limited number of Bibles each year,” CAA added.
INNER MONGOLIA: UPDATE – China Aid Association reported that authorities have released the seven house church leaders arrested on August 21. The Christian leaders were arrested during worship services. Praise God for the release of these Christian leaders. Pray for house church leader Zhou Heng and Christians in China who face challenges because of their faith in Jesus Christ.
Psalm 27:1, Isaiah 54: 14
China Aid Association

Christian Tortured to Death in Eritrea – On September 5, Eritrean authorities tortured to death 33-year-old Nigsti Haile for refusing to recant her Christian faith while being held at the Wi´a Military Training Center. Haile is the fourth Christian killed in Eritrea in less than a year. Compass Direct News reported, “She was one of 10 single Christian women arrested at a church gathering in Keren. They have spent 18 months under severe pressure. Haile was killed for refusing to sign a letter recanting her faith.” In May 2002, government officials called in the leaders of all evangelical churches in Eritrea and told them they would not be permitted to hold further public services. Only the “historic religions” of Catholic, Orthodox, Lutheran and Islam have been allowed to hold public worship since that time. Compass Direct says that more than 2,000 Eritrean Christians are imprisoned. Not a single one of them has been formally charged or had a public trial, and all have been denied legal representation. Amnesty International released a report yesterday that said most of the more than 2,000 imprisoned Christians have been held for more than two years in harsh conditions, with little or no medical care. Pray for the Holy Spirit to comfort the family of Nigsti Haile. Ask God to protect and encourage Christians in Eritrea, especially believers imprisoned because of their faith in Jesus Christ. Philippians 4:6-7, 2 Corinthians 10: 5-6
Compass Direct /Open Doors
Iglesia En Marcha. Net
16 Sep '07

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