|A United Wa State Army (UWSA) militant begins toppling cross on church building in rebel-held territory in Shan state, Burma (Myanmar), in photo circulated on Facebook. |
(Morning Star News via Facebook)
Posted at Morning Star News:
Extremist militants aim to restrict missionary activity, sources say.YANGON, Burma (Morning Star News) – Ethnic Wa rebels this month shut down churches or destroyed their buildings and temporarily detained several clergymen in eastern Burma (Myanmar), sources said.
On the border with China, soldiers of Myanmar’s largest ethnic rebel group, the United Wa State Army (UWSA), attacked the churches in the rebel’s autonomous region in Shan state, according to Christian leaders.
“We confirmed that at least 12 churches have been destroyed or closed as of Sept. 20,” a Christian leader who has lived in the Wa region for several decades told Morning Star News. The Wa people worship ancestral spirits, and the move by the UWSA was meant to hamper Christian missionary activity, said the leader on condition of anonymity.