"ISIS first made global headlines in part for its aggressive targeting of Christians in Iraq. But right now, at this moment, Iraq is not the only country where Christians are currently suffering persecution," CNN's Erin Burnett noted informed the audience of her eponymous September 15 program. "Christians in China are facing the most brutal crackdown in decades from their own government," she added.
"Tonight we have exclusive video out front that shows police beating church members," the CNN anchor noted as she introduced a report from Beijing-based correspondent David McKenzie.
"[F]or months" in the city of Wenzhou, "known as the Jerusalem of China... the government has demolished scores of churches and torn down hundreds of crosses," McKenzie noted as he showed video of Chinese riot police beating up church members.
At the end of the story, Burnett noted the government fears Christians because they could soon outnumber Communist Party members. "The Communist Party has blacked out reports on your story, right," the OutFront anchor asked McKenzie who answered:
I think the reason is because the Communist Party in China promotes this image of social harmony, religious freedoms, and this story, and those brutal images of Chinese police smacking those protesters, often peaceful protesters, in the head in one case, just flies in the face of the image that the Chinese Communist Party wants to put out there.
What's more, McKenzie noted in closing, the pastor of the church featured in his report is now in government custody and could face 10 years in prison.
To watch McKenzie's report, click play on the CNN.com video embedded above.