(TibetanReview.net, Dec13’19) – China has tasked its state approved, national-level religious bodies, the only ones allowed to exist in the country, to rebut a groundswell of international criticisms of its repression of religious freedom by calling them to a meeting in Beijing on Dec 12. The groups gathered in Beijing to discuss ways of better telling the country’s religious stories so as to present a true picture of China to the world, reported China’s official Xinhua news agency Dec 13.
The report said leaders of religious groups that attended the meeting included those from the Buddhist Association of China, the Taoist Association of China, the China Islamic Association, the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, the Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church in China, and the National Committee of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement of the Protestant Churches in China.
A statement issued at the end of the meeting was cited as saying “some forces in the world” “label China as a ‘persecutor of religion’ in an attempt to damage China’s international image and undermine religious harmony in the country.”
The religious groups were given to have stated to have stressed intensifying efforts to introduce the Communist Party of China’s religious theories, principles and policies, share China’s own experience in successfully dealing with religious issues, show its achievements of respecting and protecting freedom of religious belief, as well as progress in cracking down on extremist forces and preventing extremism, so as to present a true, multi-dimensional and panoramic view of China from a religious perspective.