China calls U.S resolution on religious persecution 'groundless'

 The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday approved the resolution condemning China for rising persecution of religious believers.

U.S. lawmakers approved two other resolutions: one condemning China's appointment of Catholic bishops without the Vatican's approval, and the other urging remembrance of the 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators in Tiananmen Square, the AP reports.

China's communist government maintains that the Tiananmen crackdown was justified because it laid the basis for the country's rapid economic development.

China's state-sanctioned Catholic church, the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association, has appointed several bishops in recent weeks without the pope's blessing. The Vatican invoked a rule ordering those who took part in the ordination to be excommunicated.