China’s government is ratcheting up a crackdown on Christian congregations in Beijing and several provinces, destroying crosses, burning bibles, shutting churches and ordering followers to sign papers renouncing their faith, according to pastors and a group that monitors religion in China.
AP reports that the campaign corresponds with a drive to “Sinicize” religion by demanding loyalty to the officially atheist Communist Party. .
Chinese law requires religious believers to worship only in congregations registered with the authorities, but many millions belong to so-called underground or house churches that defy government restrictions.
In Beijing, the Zion church was shut on Sunday, the church’s pastor, Ezra Jin Mingri, said on Monday. Zion is known as the largest house church in Beijing, with six branches.
Besides Christianity, millions of Muslims in far-west China have been facing forced political indoctrination at alleged ‘brainwashing camps’ where they have to eat pork and drink alcohol as ‘punishment’,
Whereas, children in traditionally Buddhist Tibet, have been banned from taking part in religious activities during the summer holidays.