Apple has removed a Bible app and a Quran app from its App Store in China after the Chinese government complained that the apps violated local laws on religious texts.
According to Christian Post, the Bible App by Olive Tree, and Quran Majeed have been removed from the App Store due to compliance concerns. The Bible App has over a million downloads.
Apple did not comment on the change but emphasized its human rights policy.
“We are required to comply with local laws, and there are sometimes complex issues on which we can disagree with governments,” the policy says.
This is not the first time that tech apps and devices have been criticized and withdrawn from the Chinese government. Previously, Chinese officials removed Bible apps and Christian WeChat public accounts earlier this year.
In April, Father Francis Liu of the Chinese Christian Fellowship of Righteousness noted in a tweet that some Christian WeChat accounts, including “Gospel League” and “Life Quarterly”, were no longer available on the platform.
When someone tries to access these accounts, they get a message that says, “(We) have received [a] report that (this account) violates the “provisions relating to the management of information services on the public accounts of Internet users” and that his account has been blocked and suspended. “
According to Open Doors USA, China has some 97 million Christians, and many are forced to pray in âillegalâ underground churches.
Between July 2020 and June 2021, the persecution monitoring group International Christian Concern reported more than 100 cases of Christian persecution in China. There were 23 other incidents where authorities desecrated or destroyed religious structures and symbols during the same period.
In one case, the Chinese authorities reportedly punished a man who provided a place of worship for believers, fining him $ 30,000 for organizing “illegal religious activities”.
âThe CCP has demolished, destroyed, and kidnapped many churches in China, especially those that refused to submit to its control,â an ICC report said.
Photo courtesy of: Â© Getty Images / Sitthiphong
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has been covering ChristianHeadlines.com news since 2014. She has also contributed to the Houston Chronicle, US News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs on The migraine runner.