China Accused of Closing and Destroying Mosques in Crackdown on Islam, Human Rights Watch Reports”

China is facing allegations from Human Rights Watch (HRW) for systematically closing, destroying, and repurposing mosques as part of an effort to curb the practice of Islam. The crackdown appears to be a broader initiative to exert control over organized religion in the country.

The report follows growing evidence of human rights abuses against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang. Approximately 20 million Muslims reside in China, which officially allows religious freedom but has faced increased scrutiny in recent years.

The Chinese government denies accusations of abuse. The repression extends to other regions, with reports of mosque closures and consolidation in Ningxia. Under Xi Jinping’s leadership, the Communist Party has sought to align religion with political ideology, emphasizing “Sinicisation” to transform religious beliefs to reflect Chinese culture.

The government claims mosque consolidation aims to reduce economic burden, but critics argue it redirects loyalty toward the Party. Opposition to “Sinicisation” policies has been met with resistance, leading to arrests and detentions.

The crackdown affects not only Muslims but also other ethnic and religious minorities in China, including Tibetans and Christians. Arab and Muslim leaders worldwide are urged to raise concerns about the situation. (Credit: BBC)

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