Chinese government policy has forced the country’s Muslims to exist in isolation from Muslims around the world, according to a report by the BBC. The lack of religious freedom clearly limits the ways Chinese Muslims are able to practice their faith, but the enforced isolation has an unexpected benefit, especially for women believers: “Beijing’s tight control over religious practice means Chinese Muslims have been isolated from trends sweeping through the rest of the Islamic world. According to Dr Khaled Abou el Fadl from the University of California in Los Angeles, that means that ancient traditions like female jurists – which have been stamped out elsewhere – have been able to continue in China. ‘The Wahhabi and Salafis have not been able to penetrate areas like China and establish their puritanical creed there,’ said Dr Khaled Abou el Fadl. ”
Meanwhile, an article in the South China Morning Post argues the opposite point, that the Muslim Hui minority in China is increasingly influenced by their fellow believers around the world: “Globalization has hit the Huis like a whirlwind, and daily access to Arabic TV network Al-Jazeera and frequent travel to the Middle East mean they are now more aware of their status as members of a global community of believers. ” Registration is required to read the whole story.