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China’s government is cracking down on Christian congregations in Beijing and numerous other provinces, according to Chinese pastors and China Aid, a US-based religious freedom group in China.
Video footage shows burning bibles, destroyed crosses, and officials forcing followers to sign forms stating they have renounced their faith.
The crackdown is part of a governmental campaign to “Sinicize” religion in China. President Xi Jinping and the ruling atheist Communist party demand that citizens’ ultimate loyalty is to the state, not a religion.
Bob Fu of China Aid said that several churches, including a prominent house church in Beijing, were closed this weekend, signaling a “significant escalation” in the crackdown.
“The international community should be alarmed and outraged for this blatant violation of freedom of religion and belief,”
The pastors of these churches say that officials and police arrived at their door without warning and declared the buildings “illegal.”
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