China remains "very" troubling country on religious freedom says US

May 30, 2018, 10:57 IST | IANS

According to the annual State Department report on International Religious Freedom, although Chinese authorities continued to block information about the number of self-immolations of Tibetan Buddhists, including Buddhist monks, media reported on six

Buddhist monks
Representational Image

Observing that Tibetan Buddhists continue to be in a very difficult situation, a top American diplomat today said that China remains a "very troubling" country on religious freedom. "Situation for Tibetan Buddhists that continues to be a very difficult situation for them ... for Christians, for Falun Gong practitioners. China remains a very, very troubling country on religious freedom," US Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback told reporters during a news conference in Washington.

According to the annual State Department report on International Religious Freedom, although Chinese authorities continued to block information about the number of self-immolations of Tibetan Buddhists, including Buddhist monks, media reported on six self-immolations and one instance in which a man in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) committed suicide by slitting his throat. Reportedly, a Buddhist monk self-immolated in Haikou City due to a land requisition dispute involving a Buddhist temple. Multiple media outlets reported an increase in control over religious activities in advance of the 19th Party Congress in October, it said.

There are between six-eight million Tibetan Buddhists in China. "Tibetan Buddhists in the country, including outside the TAR, are not free to venerate the Dalai Lama openly," the report said. "While there is no public law expressly forbidding it, authorities view as suspect any display of the Dalai Lama's photo by businesses or individuals and treat those seen as loyal to him as a separatist threat," it said. In February last year, the report said authorities in Xinjiang defined 26 religious activities, including some practices of Islam, Christianity, and Tibetan Buddhism, as illegal without government authorization. These regulations, which came into force April 1, stipulate that no classes, scripture study groups, or religious studies courses may be offered by any group or institution without prior government approval.

No religious group is permitted to carry out any religious activities, including preaching, missionary work, proselytizing, and ordaining clergy, without government approval. "The pronouncement forbids the designation of reincarnations of Tibetan Buddhist teachers without government approval," the report said. It also bans editing, translation, publication, printing, reproduction, production, distribution, sale, and dissemination of religious publications and audiovisual products without authorization, said the Congressional-mandated report.

Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

Tags

world news

DISCLAIMER: mid-day and its affiliates shall have no liability for any views, thoughts and comments expressed on this article.

Everything you need to know about the newly crowned Miss World 2018

This website uses cookie or similar technologies, to enhance your browsing experience and provide personalised recommendations. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. OK