Police in China have swooped on a religious retreat and detained almost a dozen Roman Catholic clergymen.
A church in the vicinity was then demolished in further proof of the country’s lack of religious freedom.
The 12 priests and seminarians were attending a retreat on 20 October in Gaocheng county, in Hebei province’s Shijiazhuang city, when police struck, the Connecticut-based Cardinal Kung Foundation said in a statement reported by AFP.
The gathering was not supported by the government-sanctioned “Patriotic Association,” – the body that oversees all state-approved churches in China, the foundation said.
“They are charged with illegal assembly. I don’t know if they will be released soon,” a worker at the detention center where the priests are being held told AFP.