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article imageBibles Banned at 2008 Beijing Olympics

By Chris V. Thangham     Nov 7, 2007 in World
Organizers for the 2008 Olympics in China have released a list of items banned from the Olympic Village, where the athletes will stay. Among the prohibited objects are Bibles, any religious symbols, and video cameras.
The Catholic News Agency reports this banning said the Chinese Olympics organizing committee cited “security reasons” for this ban. However, last month, China’s top religious affairs official, Ye Xiaowen, had said the religious sentiments of others will be tolerated and that they will provide religious services for foreigners. Now they are backtracking.
Xiaowen, director-general of the State Administration for Religious Affairs, had said on Oct. 17 that those who are attending the Olympics will be provided with all the religious services needed for them. He also promised that they will provide a better quality of religious services than the previous games.
According to the Olympic charter, "no kind of political propaganda, religious or racial hatred is allowed in the Olympic areas." But here, China is deliberately forcing their ideology on all the participants by banning the Bible and other religious symbols in the name of security. How is the Holy Book a security threat? If it is, then all books must be dangerous.
China had earlier tried to ban the reincarnations and had said government officials should approve the reincarnations, eliminating the chance of any Dalai Lama-approved reincarnations.
The Spanish daily La Razon responded to this ban and said this is one of the many “signs of censure and intolerance” towards religious objects, particularly those used by Christians in China.
There are 10 million Catholics in China. Many of them remain underground and some are loyal to the state-approved church that respects the Pope as a spiritual figurehead but refuses to be under papal control.
If China keeps insisting on such policies and restrictions, soon everyone will start banning the Olympics and their businesses.
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