CHINA PUTS UP NEW RESTRICTIONS ON CHRISTIAN INFORMATION ON THE INTERNET

The Chinese Communist Party, which has been criticized for targeting Christians and wielding its power of internet censorship through big tech companies, is putting even more restrictions on the religious freedom of its citizens with a new law regulating online religious content, according to a report.  The new legislation, known as Administrative Measures for Internet Religious Information Services, which was formulated last month, will be enacted on March 1, publication produced by the Center for Studies on New Religion which covers human rights issues in China.  The law mandates an “Internet Religious Information Service License” for any religious group that wants to disseminate religious content on the internet. But it says only “legally established” organizations can do so, which practically means only groups that are part of the five authorized religions in China can use the internet to distribute religious content.  Open Doors USA, which covers persecution in over 60 countries, estimates that China has more than 97 million Christians, many of whom worship in unregistered or so-called “illegal” underground churches.  As per the new law: “they can broadcast sermons and lessons, but these would be checked by the authorities for their contents, making sure they promote socialist values and support Religious universities and colleges may disseminate content via the internet only to their students. Any attempt to spread religious content to minors or ‘induce minors to believe in religion’ will lead to the termination of the license.”  Without the license, it will be severely prohibited to share images or comments on “religious ceremonies such as worshiping Buddha, taking ordination, chanting, worship, mass and baptisms. ”The law follows complaints by President Xi Jinping that prohibitions on the use of the internet to advertise religion are not enough to prevent “religious fanfare”

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CHINA PUTS UP NEW RESTRICTIONS ON CHRISTIAN INFORMATION ON THE INTERNET

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