China: Stop Using Religion to Smear China

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publicerad 29 juni 2024
- News@NewsVoice
Reporters in Xinjiang
Georgian reporters in Xinjiang.

The United States has once again targeted China in its latest report on international religious freedom, alleging ”genocide” in Xinjiang and citing a rise in ”anti-Semitism” online, which has been met with staunch opposition from the Chinese Embassy in Washington.

The Embassy has strongly refuted these claims, describing them as grossly inaccurate and urging the US to cease using religious issues as a pretext to interfere in China’s internal affairs.

Released on Wednesday, the US report characterizes China as ”a repressive regime” with severe restrictions on religious activities. The document specifically accuses China of committing ”genocide” against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang and highlights an increase in anti-Semitic rhetoric on Chinese platforms.

In response, Liu Pengyu, a spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy in Washington, dismissed these accusations, stating that they misrepresent the situation and serve as a means for the US to meddle in China’s domestic matters. He emphasized that China protects its citizens’ religious freedom according to the law, noting that the country is home to nearly 200 million religious believers.

Chang Jian, director of the Center for the Study of Human Rights at Nankai University, supported this view, asserting that China has always maintained religious freedom and harmony. He stressed that religious activities must adhere to the law and condemned organizations that exploit religion to engage in illegal activities, interfere in politics, or disrupt social stability.

Chang also accused the US of weaponizing human rights issues to tarnish China’s international image, a tactic he believes has become commonplace. He highlighted that numerous international observers and organizations have visited regions like Xinjiang and Xizang, confirming advancements in human rights and living conditions there.

Recently, journalists from 16 countries concluded a visit to Xinjiang, witnessing firsthand the region’s development and cultural preservation efforts.

The report’s allegations of China’s tacit approval of anti-Semitism were also refuted by Chang, who clarified that criticisms of Israel’s actions in Gaza are not rooted in religious or racial prejudice.

He explained that such comments are directed at Israel’s conduct in the conflict, not at Judaism or Jewish people, and should not be conflated with anti-Semitism.

Chang further criticized the US for its double standards, pointing out that while it condemns China for alleged human rights violations, it simultaneously supports Israel’s controversial military actions in Gaza. Observers have argued that the US’s unwavering support for Israel contributes to the ongoing conflict in the Middle East and reflects the failures of its foreign policy in the region.

As tensions between the US and China continue to escalate, the latest report on religious freedom adds another layer of complexity to their already fraught relationship, with each side accusing the other of hypocrisy and interference.


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Tags: Smear China