by Brandon Showalter, The Christian Post
Hi-tech surveillance devices including face and fingerprint scanning equipment are now being installed in churches throughout China.
According to a report from Bitter Winter, a publication that explores human rights and religious freedom in China, a facial recognition system that was placed in a government-controlled church, called the Three-Self Church, in Urumqi — the capital of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region — is now being introduced elsewhere in China.
“On October 6th, Muyang Church (literally Shepherding Church) in the central province of Hubei, which is also the home of the Two Chinese Christian Councils of Huangshi city, had two biometric devices set up on its second floor. Since then, congregation members have to stand in line to have their faces and fingerprints scanned before being allowed to enter the church,” the publication reported.
“Around the same time, in the city’s state-run Tian’en Church, facial recognition equipment has been also installed to check the believers who attend gatherings.”
A Christian told the magazine several weeks ago that local authorities required every meeting venue established by Three-Self churches in Huangshi city to take the fingerprints of fellow believers and put on file their personal and family information.
The churchgoer was disturbed by the order since it requires not only that church members be under constant tracking and surveillance but that their families and relatives are implicated by association.
© 2019 The Christian Post