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Why China Removed Dome, Minarets From 14th Century Dongguan Mosque?

China removed domes and minarets from the historic 14th century mosque located in Xining city in Qinghai province. After removing the huge green dome and minarets, the structure of the mosque looks more like a regular building. UK Deputy Mission Head in China, Christina Scott, was the first to post about the changes made to the 14th century Dongguan Great  Mosque. 

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Christina’s guide book, which is 4-year-old guided her to go to the Dongguan Great Mosque, but when she reached there it was closed for renovation. She noticed that the dome and minarets as shown in the photo given in the guide book were missing. 

She took to Twitter to share that her guide book is getting out of date. She further said that the renovation in the mosque included removing the dome and minaret from the street-side of the building in the book. 

In another tweet, she mentioned another mosque in the area, Nanguan, which is also undergoing renovation. Crescents of the Nanguan mosque have been removed. The diplomat further questioned that maybe the authorities are giving the dome a clean. 

According to reports, the changes made to the mosque are under the China Communist Party’s (CCP) policy on the ‘sinicisation of religion.’ Earlier, local Muslims said a new imam was allocated to Dongguan in August 2018, after which the number of worshippers in the mosque regularly declined. It is believed that the new imam’s preaching was different and was not consistent with the Quran.

Around 18 per cent Qinghai’s population is Islam. Qinghai, which lies in the northeast of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in western China, has 600 years of old history of iconic mosque.

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