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Church demolition sparks fears of campaign against Christians

A church in northern China was demolished this week, the second in less than a month, sparking fears of a wider campaign against Christians as authorities prepare to enforce new laws on religion.

Police cordoned off the area around the Golden Lampstand Church church in Linfen, Shanxi province, on Sunday before construction workers detonated explosives inside, according to witnesses and the head pastor. After the initial explosion, crews broke apart the remaining pieces with diggers and jackhammers.

A Catholic church in the neighbouring province of Shaanxi was also reportedly demolished last month, 20 years after it originally opened.

China guarantees freedom of religion on paper, but in practice authorities heavily regulate many aspects of religious life. Churches must be officially sanctioned and pastors must adhere to a host of rules imposed by the government.

The restrictive policies have given rise to “house” churches, independent places of worship that exist outside official channels. Authorities periodically arrest pastors or demolish buildings used by unsanctioned congregations.

But authorities have taken a harder line since 2013 against towering crosses and large cathedrals. Officials launched a sweeping crackdown on churches in Zhejiang province that accelerated in 2015, and more than 1,200 crosses have been removed, according to activists.

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About Don Saint

PR Guru / Author / Promoter / Controversial Writer / Hip Hop Artiste / Actor / Human Rights Activist. The First Nigerian Hip Hop Artiste to obtain a Masters Degree (M.A) in Arts ( Religion & Human Relations). The author of one of the most controversial books in Nigeria; "Emancipation from Masturbation". With over 12 Movies and 3 Musical albums since 2003. Former Events Manager at Silverbird’s Rhythm Fm Awka Station till 2010. For more info. Call : 08033239298, 08056381068.

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