In a series of tweets, Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio condemned China’s treatment of religious minorities, and warned what such behavior might mean for the future.
On Monday morning, Rubio tweeted, “Imagine what life would be like for our children if they inherit a world in which the most powerful country is one that burns bibles, ransacks Christian churches & rounds up & detains Muslims in internment camps. Because that is what #China is doing.”
Rubio was referencing an Associated Press report detailing claims that the Communist government has recently intensified its crackdown on religious groups. According to an unnamed Christian pastor in the central province of Henan, Chinese officials raided his church on Sep. 5 and burned crosses, bibles and furniture. On Sunday, the largest unregistered “house church” in Beijing was also shut down by 60 state officials, “accompanied by buses, police cars and fire trucks,” according to the story.
On Sunday, Rubio also shared a satellite image of what he said were “the expanding government internment camps #China is using to detain Muslims in vast numbers.”
A recent U.N. panel estimated that around 1 million ethnic Uighurs — many of whom are Sunni Muslims — are being detained in camps where they are tortured, forced to study communist propaganda and participate in chants of praise to Chinese president Xi Jinping. Rubio called on the Trump administration to issue sanctions on the officials responsible for the persecution.