Beliefs are accepted propositions.
I believe you means that I accept what you’re saying is true. All knowledge is belief, but all beliefs are not knowledge. Beliefs do not require justification, but knowledge does.
For example, I accept that the proposition ‘God exists,’ is true. I believe that God exists. I also feel justified in my beliefs, for reasons I’ve discussed earlier.
Atheism, to be a belief, must have a true or false value to the proposition ‘God exists.’ While atheism now simply claims to be a ‘lack of belief,’ if a belief is accepting a proposition as true, a lack of belief is not accepting that proposition as true. By not accepting the proposition as true, they do not believe that God exists.