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The Anglosphere Society
Taiwan Keynote: Luke de Pulford
Shared by Lord Alton of Liverpool
Understating the scale of global religious persecution; the central importance of religious freedom and its impact on human trafficking and other violations of human rights. I asked Lord Alton to set the scene by giving you an overview of the global phenomenon of religious persecution. This grossly under-stated issue leads to the persecution of hundreds of millions of people worldwide, including an estimated 250 million Christians, who are far and away the most persecuted group of all.11 of them are killed each, and every, single day.
The unprecedented scale of anti-Christian persecution in Asia
By John Pontifex
When an elderly Christian woman in a village in India’s Tamil Nadu state was beaten by extremists, her attackers defended their actions by saying that she had defiled the road by walking on it during a Hindu festival. A dozen Christians who tried to rescue her were also injured when the extremists threw stones at them. Investigating the reasons for this outbreak of anti-Christian hatred shines a light not just on the problem in India but also elsewhere in the region, where the complex range of threats has shifted dramatically to pose a unique challenge to the faithful. The result is that South Asia and East Asia have become the new hotspots of persecution of Christians, and the indications are that the situation will only get worse. Click here to read
Asia is ‘new hotbed of Christian persecution’ with situation in China worst since Cultural Revolution, report claims
By Charles McDermid
Nearly 140 million Christians suffered high levels of persecution in Asia last year, according to a new report, which described the situation facing the faith in China as the worst since the Cultural Revolution. The annual Open Doors World Watch List, released on Wednesday, said Asia is “the new hotbed of persecution for Christians”. It noted a sharp increase in the persecution of Christians in Asia over the past five years – but with a dramatic spike in 2018, driven by the likes of a rise in Hindu ultra-nationalism in India, radical Islamism in Indonesia and tougher religious regulations in China. Click here to read
China Cracks Down on Christians
By Nina Shea & Bob Fu
Nina Shea is a Board Member of TAS
Zion Church in Beijing is the largest in China’s burgeoning Protestant underground. In September, the 11-year-old house church was sealed shut by the government. Its crime? Zion’s pastor, Dr. Ezra Mingri Jin, a graduate of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, had rejected an intolerable Chinese Communist Party (CCP) directive to mount face-recognition cameras on his pulpit, turned on the congregation. For his refusal, the pastor and virtually all of Zion’s 1,500 members have been detained, searched and questioned by public security – some more than once. Click here to read
China's Han Superstate: The New Third Reich
By Gordon G. Chang
More than a million people, for no reason other than their ethnicity or religion, are held in concentration camps in what Beijing calls the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and what traditional inhabitants of the area, the Uighurs, say is East Turkestan. In addition to Uighurs, ethnic Kazakhs are also held in these facilities. Families in this troubled area, shown on maps as the northwestern portion of the People's Republic of China, are being torn apart. The children of imprisoned Uighur and Kazakh parents are "confined" to "schools" that are separated from the outside by barbed wire and heavy police patrols. They are denied instruction in their own language, forced to learn Mandarin Chinese. The controls are part of a so-called "Hanification" policy, a program of forced assimilation. "Han" is the name of China's dominant ethnic group. Click here to read
Philippines: Christians Slaughtered, Churches Bombed
By Raymond Ibrahim
On Sunday, January 27, extremist Muslims bombed a Catholic cathedral during Mass in the Philippines. At least 20 people were killed and 111 wounded. At 8:45 am, two explosives were detonated about a minute apart in or near the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Jolo. According to the Associated Press:
"The initial explosion scattered the wooden pews inside the main hall and blasted window glass panels, and the second bomb hurled human remains and debris across a town square fronting the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, witnesses said."
Photographs on social media showed human bodies and remains strewn on the street just outside the cathedral. Last heard, the officiating priest, Fr. Ricky Bacolcol, "was still in shock and could not speak about what happened," said a colleague. Click here to read
British and Pakistan Governments and the Commonwealth Challenged In The British Parliament To Champion the Persecuted Minorities Of Pakistan; to uphold the ideals of Muhammad Ali Jinnah; and for Prince William to meet the minorities during his forthcoming visit.
By Lord Alton of Liverpool
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the relationship between their aid programmes and human rights and the treatment of minorities in Pakistan, and in particular the case of Asia Bibi. My Lords, Pakistan’s illustrious and enlightened founder, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, crafted a constitution which promised to uphold plurality, famously saying: “You may belong to any religion, caste or creed—that has nothing to do with the business of the State”
and that ... Click here to read
The Vatican’s Agreement With China Looks Even Worse Now
By Nina Shea
Nina Shea is a Board Member of TAS
Two months out, the China-Holy See provisional agreement on episcopal appointments is proving to be yet another tool for Beijing to suppress the Chinese faithful. And its damage goes even deeper than the Chinese government’s selection of Catholic bishops, as critical as that is for the hierarchically structured Roman Catholic Church. In asserting state control over religion, Chinese President Xi Jinping continues the harshest crackdown since the Cultural Revolution against all religions, the Catholic Church included, as documented by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. Meanwhile, the agreement gives the Chinese regime moral cover and provides it with new opportunities for influencing religious matters at home and in Rome. Click here to read
Do Not Trade with a China that Lies, Cheats, and Steals
By Gordon G. Chang
"This won't revolutionize the U.S.-China relationship or the terms of trade between us, but it shows that the two countries can work together on an important issue," said Clete Willems of Akin Gump to Bloomberg, referring to President Trump's "phase one deal" announced October 11. "Learning to do so is critical to avoid a broad deterioration of all aspects of our relationship, which is not in anyone's long-term interest." Despite what Willems said, it now is in the long-term interest of the United States to walk away from trade deals with the People's Republic of China. Click here to read
Do Not Support China's Huawei, Cripple It Instead
By Gordon G. Chang
China, with control of 5G, will be in a position to remotely manipulate the world's devices. In peacetime, Beijing could have the ability to drive cars off cliffs, unlock front doors, and turn off pacemakers. In war, Beijing could paralyze critical infrastructure.
Click here to read
Pakistan’s blasphemy ordeal
By Farahnaz Ispahani
Barely two weeks after Pakistani Christian Asia Naureen (usually referred to as Asia Bibi), whose ordeal over false blasphemy charges attracted international attention, was allowed to leave the country, Pakistan’s blasphemy laws claimed new victims.
A Hindu veterinary doctor, Ramesh Kumar, was arrested in Sindh province on May 27 after a local cleric filed a police complaint accusing him of committing blasphemy. Mr. Kumar’s village Phulhadiyon, in Mirpurkhas district, has a population of about 7,000 people, the majority of whom are Hindus. As is often the case when blasphemy allegations are made in Pakistan, riots broke out in the area and an angry mob burnt down Mr. Kumar’s establishment as well as other property belonging to him and his family. The mob also tried to attack the police station and caused some damage in the process. Although six suspects were soon taken into custody for rioting and damaging the vet’s property, it is Mr. Kumar’s family that will now be living in fear while his prosecution meanders through Pakistan’s judicial system. Click here to read
The Vatican’s Unholy China Deal
By William McGurn
The Catholic Church in China is being “murdered” while the Vatican stands idly by. So alleged Cardinal Joseph Zen in an appeal he sent to the world’s 223 cardinals in September but only recently made public.
This columnist caught up with the cardinal on Thursday in New York. He was just back from Washington, where Speaker Nancy Pelosi presented him with the Chinese Democracy Champion Prize on behalf of the Wei Jingsheng Foundation. Asked about his talk of “murder,” he doubles down.... Click here to read (Subscription may be required)
359 'People Were in Pieces!' Sri Lanka: Islamist Terror on Easter
By Raymond Ibrahim
Eight separate explosions took place, at least two of which were suicide bombings: three targeted churches celebrating Easter Sunday Mass; four targeted hotels frequented by Western tourists in connection with Easter holiday; and one blast in a house, which killed three police officers during a security operation. Click here to read
Target government aid at Pakistan's persecuted minorities
By Lord Alton of Liverpool
Next week the Lords will have a short debate on the plight of Pakistan’s minorities, whose shocking treatment came into sharp focus through the case of Asia Bibi – wrongly condemned to death and incarcerated for nine years under Pakistan’s Blasphemy laws. Pakistan’s Ahmadis, Christians, Hindus, and other minorities – like the last remaining 4,000 Kalash, clinging to a precarious existence in three remote valleys of Pakistan – all face shocking persecution and discrimination. Click here to read
Catholics Pray Outside Their Shut Down Churches
By An Xin
To push all believers under its control, the Chinese government is closing down all churches that refuse to join the Patriotic Catholic Church.
By January 16, over ten Catholic churches have been closed in the county-level city Fu’an, administered by Ningde city in the southeastern province of Fujian. All of them refuse to register with the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association (CPCA) and belong to the Diocese of Mindong, part of Fuzhou Archdiocese, where numerous churches have been shut down over the past year.
After the signing of the Vatican-China Deal of 2018, the situation of Catholic conscientious objectors who refuse to be registered continues to deteriorate across the country: clergy members and believers are frequently harassed and persecuted, churches closed down or demolished. Click here to read
China isn’t only an oppresssor in Hong Kong. It’s a threat to all of us. Here’s how to respond.
By Luke de Pulford
Armistice Day 2019 will surely be remembered as a threshold moment in the history of Hong Kong. In the early hours of Monday morning, traffic police fired live rounds into the chests of two protestors at Sai Wan Ho. Instead of putting one of those students into the recovery position, the police manhandled the body of the kid who had been shot, trying to force his limp frame to sit up straight. Click here to read