There has been a sevenfold rise in the persecution of Christians in China since 2008, according to a report published in May by China Aid, a partner of UK-based Release International.
The report claims that China is seeking ‘complete control over the nation’s churches’ with the aim of replacing ‘Christ as the head of the church with submission to the Communist Party’. To that end, China has increased its crackdown on Christians and churches, especially house churches.
In the early hours of the morning of 12 May, the tent where a Christian church just north of Minya had been forced to meet for the past year was set on ﬁre by a group of extremists, leaving it completely destroyed.
The church had been using the tent for its regular church services, functions and celebrations after the local authority sealed off their church building in the wake of protests and riots by local Muslims.
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