China to rewrite Quran, Bible to fit 'socialist values'

DAILY SABAH WITH WIRES
ISTANBUL
Published 25.12.2019 16:26
Chinese President Xi Jinping waves during an inauguration ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the former Portuguese colony's handover to Chinese rule, Macao, Dec. 20, 2019. AP Photo
Chinese President Xi Jinping waves during an inauguration ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the former Portuguese colony's handover to Chinese rule, Macao, Dec. 20, 2019. (AP Photo)

China plans to rewrite all translated "classic religious books" to reflect the socialist values of the Communist Party of China. The order was given during a meeting in November that was organized by the Committee for Ethnic Affairs, which is responsible for all religious matters of the country.

While not directly referring to the Quran and the Bible, the committee plans a comprehensive review of the religious texts, which allegedly "do not conform to the progress of the times" and need to be fitted to the "era of President Xi Jinping."

The reviewed editions of the text – sutras from Buddhism included – should not be against the principles of the Communist Party and will either be changed or re-translated by state-appointed censors.

In the meeting, a group of experts and representatives gathered to be told that they would need to follow President Xi's order to interpret their beliefs in accordance with "the core values of Socialism," Xinhua News Agency reported.

This move comes amid the crackdown on the Muslim Uighur's that are held in so-called re-education centers. Up to 1 million people have been incarcerated in these centers, according to U.S. officials and U.N. experts. Beijing initially denied the existence of the camps in Xinjiang, but now says they are "vocational training centers" necessary to combat terrorism.

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