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World News

China 'intensifying crackdown on Christians and churches' says persecution watchdog

by Donna Birrell

China has intensified its crackdown against Christians and churches according to International Christian Concern.

In its latest report,the watchdog details growing Christian persecution across the country, including raids on schools and 32 cases of arrests or detainments. 

That's despite Beijing's repeated claim that respecting and protecting freedom of religious belief is the basic policy of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) and the Chinese government.

Gina Goh, ICC's regional mamager for Southeast Asia said :

"In every aspect of a Christian's religious life, the CCP wants to interfere and insert its ideology, a control that is detrimental to China's religious liberty,"

The report notes that the number of incidents recorded doesn't reflect the full scope of Christian persecution that took place during the reporting period xxxxxx It says that for example, the removal of 90 crosses from Chinese Christian boats on Qushan Island is reported as one case. In addition, many cases were not captured and recorded because it is difficult to receive information from China. 

Among the incidents detailed are 20 cases of the Sinicization of churches and five cases of raids at Christian schools. It also includes 39 incidents related to social pressure. 

ICC says that Beijing employs various measures to coerce house church Christians to join CCP-vetted churches in order to exert control. These methods include pressuring landlords to cancel rental agreements and surveying Christian students at school. 

There are 32 cases of arrests or detainments of Christians recorded.

Jay Church, ICC's advocacy manager for Southeast Asia said :

"The international community must pay attention to China's ongoing campaign against religion. There's no excuse for continued inaction. The Chinese government does not allow religion except to the extent it can manipulate religion into a tool to increase the power of the CCP. It is to be hoped that this report will serve to increase the volume on an issue that is too often quietly ignored in halls of power around the world." 

ICC included cases from ChinaAid, Union of Catholic Asia News and Radio Free Asia among other sources to compile the report. 

To download the full report, click here : july21-june22_china_report.pdf (



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