Chairman Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and members of the Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party gathered for an interfaith roundtable discussion focused on the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) assault on religious freedom. The participants, including esteemed guests, examined the CCP’s persecution of Christians, Muslims, Tibetan Buddhists, and individuals who refuse to prioritize Xi Jinping’s decrees over their faith.
The representatives of religious leaders from Uyghur, Chinese, and Tibetan communities testified before the U.S. House Select Committee and U.S religious leaders, affirming that the Chinese government is perpetrating unimaginably heinous crimes against religions and their followers, surpassing the actions of any contemporary leaders.
Uyghur Imam Ankar Hajim also courageously testified during the roundtable, highlighting the personal risks associated with speaking out against the CCP. Imam Hajim warned participants that the CCP’s influence can extend even into the United States, posing a threat to those who dare to voice dissent on American soil.He said ““The Chinese government destroyed thousands of mosques… even Xi Jinping called Islam a mental illness to be treated.” – Imam Hajim, a Uyghur Imam living in the U.S.The Chinese government burnt Qurans and Muslim worls keep silence. Even during wartime, we often witness brutal regimes refraining from destroying sacred religious sites. However, Xi Jinping has demolished numerous religious sites and mosques that hold great significance for Uyghur Muslims.”
Uyghur Imam Ankar Hajim told Uyghur Times, “It is my first time and the most important and honorable time of my life. It is impossible and a rare chance for millions of Uyghurs like me. Thousands of Uyghurs don’t have any chance to testify and tell about what happened. I was emotional; I cried emotionally before the Congress leaders and other religious leaders. I tried my best to tell what is happening to my fellow Uyghur brothers and sisters. I was touched by the love, sympathy, and support that Christian and Jewish religious leaders showed, while millions of Muslim leaders stayed silent.”
Chinese Pastor Pan Yongguang played a prominent role in the conversation, sharing the gripping account of his church’s escape from persecution under the Chinese regime. In April, Pastor Pan and members of the Mayflower Church were granted asylum in the United States, having fled after CCP agents targeted, harassed, and attempted to abduct church members in Thailand.
The Constitution of the CCP denies the existence of God and instills an anti-faith ideology in its citizens through education, media, and political indoctrination. Multiple reports have revealed that the CCP has labeled religions as a “poison” and in the case of Islam, considers it a ‘mental illness’ that requires ‘treatment’.
The gathering included notable leaders such as Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Chair of the US Commission for International Religious Freedom and Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action for the Simon Wiesenthal Center; David Curry, Commissioner of the US Commission for International Religious Freedom and President/CEO of Global Christian Relief; Imam Mohamad Magid, Commissioner of the US Commission for International Religious Freedom and Executive Religious Director of All Dulles Area Muslim Society Center; and Rev. Frederick Davie, Vice Chair of the US Commission for International Religious Freedom and Strategic Advisor to the President at Union Theological Seminary.
The interfaith roundtable shed light on the CCP’s grave violations against religious freedom and served as a platform for meaningful dialogue and collaboration among diverse religious leaders committed to addressing these pressing concerns.
Other distinguished attendees included Pastor Bob Roberts, President of the Institute for Global Engagement; Dr. Bob Fu, Founder and President of China Aid and religious refugee from China; Bhuchung Tsering from the International Campaign for Tibet; and Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council and former Chair of the US Commission for International Religious Freedom. Additionally, Pastor Corey Jackson, Imam Hajim, and Father Kurt Klismet, among others, participated in the significant event.