Laos Christians Detained During Christmas Service

( [email protected] ) Jan 05, 2004 11:41 AM EST

Eleven Christians were allegedly arrested during a Christmas Day service in southern Laos according to the Lao Movement for Human Rights group.

The Paris based group claimed six worshippers were arrested on Dec. 27 in Kang village, in the Sanamsay district, “simply for having prayed together.” Another man was arrested in Sosouk village. Four others were detained in separate villages on Dec. 28.

"After having been conducted to the district then to the provincial Religious Affairs Office, the 11 Christians, mostly from the Khmu and Oey ethnic minorities, were imprisoned and their Bibles confiscated," the statement said.

The statement also added 10 other Christians are currently sought by police for organizing Christmas prayer meetings.

There were no other official sources available to back the LMHR, which frequently accuses communist nations for persecuting Christians. LMHR claims that Lao leaders “keep on denying all human rights violations by the regime while using religious freedom as a currency exchange and a strategy to obtain international assistance."