ROME – When the United States Secretary of State speaks, it is usually about political affairs of state. When Mike Pompeo addressed a symposium in Rome on October 2, his message was about increasing global threats to the right of religious freedom. Secretary Pompeo was a featured speaker at a symposium about the work of faith-based organizations around the globe. The gathering was organized by the United States Embassy. Pompeo characterized China as a persistent aggressor against religious freedom and other human rights. He saliently explained why authoritarian governments are so vehemently opposed to religious liberty.
“When the state rules absolutely, it demands its citizens worship the government, not God. God becomes an absolute threat to authority.”
He noted that 80% of the people in the world live under the rule of “regimes that repress political freedom, or under threat of attack from religious radicals.”
Citing persecution in countries like China, Myanmar, Syria, and Iran, he reminded listeners that “The stakes today are arguably higher than they were even during the Cold War because the threats to it are more diverse and more numerous.”
Recalling estimates that as many as three million Muslims and Christians are being detained in Chinese concentration camps, he revealed that recently released survivors of the camps reported being subjected to forced sterilization and organ scans.
The organ scans are filed for future live organ harvesting, a practice in which the Chinese have been engaged for years.
Sam Brownback, Ambassador-at-Large to the Unites State Commission on International Religious Freedom, expressed his concerns about the Chinese use of advanced technologies to build their social credit score system. That system is known to marginalize people of faith.
“That system is starting to be exported to other places, other authoritarian, repressive regimes … that is why the secretary talks about it, and it is certainly why I talk about it.”
The Secretary posited that it is not a coincidence that the proliferation of “unfree societies” parallels the growing millions of people who are suffering as refugees or trapped in the web of human trafficking.
Mr. Pompeo warned that “Each of us must gird ourselves for another battle in defense of human dignity and religious freedom.” He added that we should also take comfort in the words of Jesus, who told us not to be afraid because He will never leave us or forsake us.
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- Breitbart, Pompeo: Fighting China’s Concentration Camps Is ‘Following the Wisdom of Jesus’
- Reuters, Pompeo blasts China over Uighur Muslims during Vatican visit
- Eurasia Review, Secretary Mike Pompeo Highlights Chinese Religious Freedom Violations At Vatican
- Faithwire, Secretary Pompeo Rebukes China’s Attacks on Religious Liberty, Human Rights in Speech at Vatican