ISSN 2330-717X

China: Officials Monitor Mosques In Southern Xinjiang

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Over 300 Chinese officials have been sent to a part of China’s northwestern Xinjiang province to monitor mosques, reports RFA.

State-run TV for Hotan (Hetian, in Chinese) prefecture announced that 352 Chinese cadres have been assigned to monitor mosques and people’s religious activities, said the report.

An anonymous source told RFA in his village Chinese officials had already arrived.

“We have six of them in our village,” said the villager. “This morning they called a meeting, and we met four of them. They are all Chinese.”

The villager said they were told the officials would be in the area as part of a three-year mission.

“From what they said in the meeting, they will manage the Imams of the mosques and they will conduct house-to-house visits to gain a grasp of the situation,” said the villager who explained “situation” referred to discontent with government policies, especially those towards religion.

Hotan prefecture is in the south of Xinjiang, an autonomous region where tensions have long simmered between the Chinese authorities and indigenous ethnic Uyghur population.

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The Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News, UCAN) is the leading independent Catholic news source in Asia. A network of journalists and editors that spans East, South and Southeast Asia, UCA News has for four decades aimed to provide the most accurate and up-to-date news, feature, commentary and analysis, and multimedia content on social, political and religious developments that relate or are of interest to the Catholic Church in Asia.

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