In the largest Muslim county in China, the Chinese government has banned children from attending religious events and classes that focus on the Quran. As per the state-run Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China, students from the Linxia county in the province of Gansu cannot even enter religious buildings over their school break.
This county is home to many Hui, of which there are well over 10 million in China, and who are mostly Muslim. The Hui do also populate other countries like Burma/Myanmar, Thailand, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. The majority of the Hui are Sunni. While official estimates figure there are around 21 million Muslims in China total, many would boost that number to 50 million or even more.
The Chinese government allows for religious freedom in their country — with some fine print. They only allow for “normal religious activity,” which means specific, registered places of worship that have been sanctioned and approved by the government.
This particular occurrence comes during the most recent wave of China’s attempts to stifle religious freedoms. Historically, the staunchly atheist and communist country has not only targeted Muslims — they have a long history of going after Chinese Christians as well.