Cuban officials crack down on Christianity as tourism soars
Celebrations of Cuba’s progress on freedom are still premature, especially when it comes to freedom of religion.
A new report from Christian Solidarity Worldwide reveals that there has been a frightening crackdown on Christianity throughout Cuba, even in the midst of a renewal of US-Cuban relations.
Christian Daily reports, “Based on Christian Solidarity Worldwide's (CSW) tally, there are 1,606 violations of religious liberty from January to July 2016. Among these things are demolition and seizure of churches, destruction of church property, and arbitrary detention.”
This persecution is not entirely new, but church leaders in Cuba “have raised concerns that the government's treatment of religious groups has significantly deteriorated in the last year.”
A report from Christian Solidarity Worldwide clarifies that, “In 2015, the ORA continued to deny authorisation for a number of religious activities and in cooperation with other government agencies, issued fines and threats of confiscation to dozens of churches and religious organizations. The ORA also sanctioned the arbitrary expropriation of historic, registered church properties and the actions against the AoG (Assemblies of God) churches.”
The first half of 2016 has seen the Cuban government follow-through on the seizure (and, in many cases, the demolition) of thousands of churches.
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Please act now in defense of Cuban Christians. Ask the Cuban government to take immediate steps to stop the persecution of Christians and ensure religious freedom for all Cuban citizens.
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Religious freedom for all Cuban citizens