BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese Communist Party official says growing religious practice among members is threatening its unity and leadership.
Zhu Weiqun reinforced the demand that party members not believe in religion or engage in religious practice. He said religious practice is a growing trend, especially in areas inhabited by ethnic minorities, and must not be tolerated.
Zhu’s stern remarks to the party’s 80 million members appear in the latest edition of its main theoretical journal, Qiushi, and were reported Monday by the official Xinhua News Agency.
The remarks come amid a spike in tensions between Beijing and the Vatican and crackdowns on independent churches, Buddhist monasteries and religious practice among Turkic Uighur Muslims in the northwest.