China restricts Ramzan fasting in Xinjiang region


China has banned civil servants, students and teachers in its mainly Muslim Xinjiang region from fasting during Ramzan and ordered restaurants to stay open, official websites showed as the holy month began on Thursday.

Most Muslims are required to fast from dawn to dusk during the month but China’s ruling Communist Party is officially atheist and for years has restricted the practice in Xinjiang, home to the mostly Muslim Uighur minority.

“Food service workplaces will operate normal hours during Ramzan,” said a notice posted last week on the website of the state Food and Drug Administration in Xinjiang’s Jinghe county.

Officials in the region’s Bole county were told: “During Ramzan do not engage in fasting, vigils or other religious activities,” according to a local government website report of a meeting this week.

Uighur rights groups say China’s restrictions on Islam in Xinjiang have added to ethnic tensions in the region, where clashes have killed hundreds in recent years.

China says it faces a terrorist threat in Xinjiang, with officials blaming “religious extremism” for growing violence.

“China’s goal in prohibiting fasting is to forcibly move Uighurs away from their Muslim culture during Ramazan,” said Dilxat Rexit, a spokesman for the exiled World Uyghur Congress.


  1. There goes the 'All weather friendship'! where are the Pakistanis screaming and crying to save their fellow muslim brothers rights? And the Pakistani thought to have a new slogan 'Insha-China' replacing 'Insha-Allah'!!!

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