Chinese restrictions on Ramadan flayed

chinaramdanBEIJING: Chinese officials have restricted civil servants, students and children in a mainly Muslim region from fasting during Ramadan, government websites said as the holy month began on Monday.
The country’s ruling Communist party is officially atheist and for years has banned government employees and minors from fasting in Xinjiang, home to the more than 10 million-strong mostly Muslim Uighur minority.

It has also ordered some restaurants to stay open.

Dilxat Raxit of the World Uighur Congress, an exile group, condemned the restrictions in an e-mail Monday, adding: “China thinks that the Islamic faith of Uighurs threatens the rule of the Beijing leadership.”

A Uighur official in the city’s Tiekeqi township named Ahmatjan Tohti told a meeting on Monday last week that officials should “resolutely stop party members, civil servants, students and minors from entering mosques for religious activities” during the month, according to a separate report on the website.

A website run by the education bureau of Shuimogou district in the regional capital Urumqi posted a notice on Monday last week calling for “prevention of students and teachers from all schools from entering mosques for religious activities” during Ramadan.

Several local government departments in Xinjiang have posted notices on their websites in the last week ordering restrictions on fasting.

“Party members, cadres, civil servants, students and minors must not fast for Ramadan and must not take part in religious activities,” said a notice on the official website of the city of Korla in central Xinjiang. “During the Ramadan month, food and drink businesses must not close.”

(courtesy:http://www.arabnews.com)


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