Friday, November 25, 2005

Report #9 on the Fall of communism

Link to Original

November 22, 2005

China Defiantly Opposes Religious Freedom
from staff reports

From Citizen Link, newslink from Focus on the Family

The president's call for tolerance is coldly rejected.

President Bush used his recent China trip to press not only for economic cooperation, but also for human rights and religious freedom. But Chinese officials, unlike in times past, were unresponsive and even defiant.

During the trip, Bush tried to make his point on religious freedom by praying with Christians in a state-approved church.

"My hope is that the government of China will not fear Christians who gather to worship openly," he said.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was disappointed with the Chinese response, though she framed her frustration in diplomatic terms.

"We've certainly not seen the progress that we would expect," she said. "I think we will have to keep working on it."

Bob Fu, president of the China Aid Association, was not so diplomatic. He told Family News in Focus that Chinese leaders showed no signs of goodwill toward the president on the subject.

"The Chinese government fiercely resisted the call for more religious freedom in China," he said.

Fu said that hours after the president left China, eight house-church members were released from prison. Two of the eight reported that they had been beaten and tortured by Chinese authorities.

Nina Shea, director of the Center for Religious Freedom, said China is a superpower that no longer has to bend its policies to meet world expectations.

"They are a repressing or persecuting government. They're not trying to hide it," she said. "I think they realize there are no ramifications and there's not going to be any. They are now in the World Trade Organization, and they have trade status with the United States and there's just going to be no repercussions."


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