Washington, D.C. — To coincide with International Religious Freedom Day, Senators Ted Budd (R-NC) and Thom Tillis (R-NC) announced that they intend to introduce the Combatting the Persecution of Religious Groups in China Act. The companion bill in the House is led by Rep. Mark Alford (R-MO).
The bill would hold senior Chinese government officials accountable for carrying out persecution of Christians and other religious minorities by:
- Declaring that the persecution of Christians and other religious minorities by senior Chinese government officials to be gross violation of human rights.
- Ensuring that trade negotiations with China include conditions on protecting religious freedom.
- Declaring that it is the policy of the United States to continue to designate China as a “country of particular concern”, as long as they continue to engage in violations of religious freedom.
The legislative text of the bill is HERE.
Watch this video to learn more:
Sen. Budd said in a statement:
“One of the most sacred human rights is the right to freely practice your religion. The Chinese government has violated these rights for decades by routinely and egregiously persecuting Christians and other religious groups. Until China changes course, it should be the policy of the United States to hold them accountable.”
Senator Tillis said:
“The Chinese government has an abysmal human rights record and has persecuted its citizens for practicing their own religious beliefs for far too long. I am proud to co-chair the Senate Human Rights Caucus and participate in the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission’s Defending Freedom Project by advocating for prisoners of conscience in China including Pastor John Cao and Pastor Wang Yi. The United States should work to hold China accountable and take China’s blatant disregard for religious freedom into consideration when conducting any future business or trade negotiations.”
Rep. Alford said:
“In the face of the Chinese Communist Party’s deliberate attempts to persecute and control religious groups and traditions, we must stand unwavering in our commitment to safeguard the sanctity of faith. The ‘Sinicization of Religion’ threatens every individual who believes in the fundamental right to religious freedom. With this bill, we send a clear message: the United States will not stand idly by while religious freedoms are under attack.”