Myanmar (MNN)–A Christian Solidarity Worldwide report on the Myanmar government, due for release next Tuesday, reveals plans to destroy Christianity in the country. According to Assist News, the information will be presented at an All Party Parliamentary Group on Burma to be held in London’s House of Commons, January 23.
There is some question about the title of the report: “Carrying the Cross: The Military Regime’s Campaign of Restriction, Discrimination and Persecution against Christians in Burma,” which cites Burmese documents with the headline “Program to Destroy the Christian Religion in Burma.”
Therein lies a question. In 1989, the government changed the country’s name from ‘Burma’ to ‘Myanmar’. Due to the push they made to force quick acceptance, the use of the name ‘Burma’ in the report has Voice of the Martyrs’ Todd Nettleton wondering about the validity of the documentation cited, or if somehow, it is a ruse to force believers to reveal.
However, he says IF this report is true, it’s the first time the government has actually sanctioned this kind of ‘cleansing’. “Obviously that makes any home where Christianity is practiced a target of the government. We have known that Christians are targeted, we have known that there is a level of ethnic persecution among the minority tribal groups, but this would really put a target on the back of every Christian in the country of Myanmar.”
There are few questions that the persecution is growing heavier. Myanmar ranks 18th in the Open Door World Watch list, a semi-annual release ranking countries according to the level of persecution Christians face for actively pursuing their faith.
In the meantime, a United Nations resolution on Burma proposed by the United States and supported by the United Kingdom was vetoed last Friday by China, Russia and South Africa. The resolution called for the end of ethnic minority oppression, and an end to human rights and religious rights violations. It also urged the government to release its political prisoners.
It’s enough to prompt Nettleton to urge prayer. “Pray for our Christian brothers and sisters in that country, they are active. They are working. They’re spreading the Gospel and I think that’s part of why the government is uncomfortable with the growth of the church is because Christians are reaching out and being effective. We can pray that that will continue, we can pray for their protection.”