Published: Fri, September 14, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

HRW Blames China for Repeated Violations of Uighur Muslims

HRW Blames China for Repeated Violations of Uighur Muslims

The new United Nations human rights chief, Michelle Bachelet, a former Chilean president, highlighted her concerns over "deeply disturbing allegations of large-scale arbitrary detentions of Uighurs and other Muslim communities, in so-called re-education camps across Xinjiang", and called on China to allow United Nations monitors into the region.

The Trump administration may sanction Chinese government officials and businesses over human rights violations against ethnic Uighurs and other minority Muslim groups, The New York Times reported. "We have a lot of tools at our disposal", she said.

The State Department on Tuesday expressed concern following reports of mass detentions of ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims, which has prompted global outcry.

The US Department of State said it received at the end of last month a letter from a bipartisan group of US lawmakers asking US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to impose sanctions on a number of Chinese officials accused of overseeing the policies in Xinjiang.

Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang made the comments at a daily news briefing in Beijing.

The economic sanctions over human rights violations in China would be a first for the Trump administration.

Up to 1 million people, or about 7 percent of the Muslim population in Xinjiang, have now been incarcerated in an expanding network of "political re-education" camps, according to USA officials and United Nations experts.

Han Chinese have also reportedly been subject to re-education, but according to HRW the primary targets are Turkic Muslims, including the 10 million Uyghurs and the Kazakh minority of about 1.6 million people.

A Human Rights Watch (HRW) report released earlier this week said that as many as one million people were being held in "camps" across China's western region.

"China urges the United Nations human rights high commissioner and office to scrupulously abide by the mission and principles of the United Nations charter, respect China's sovereignty, fairly and objectively carry out its duties, and not listen to one-sided information", he told a daily news briefing.

"My understanding is the issue has been raised very diplomatically to signal the concern ... but not cause the wrath of the Chinese government", Nargis Kassenova, director of the Central Asian Studies Center at KIMEP University in Almaty, said recently.

The region has become one of themost intrusive police states in the world, and government surveillance of Muslim Uighurs permeates nearly every aspect of their lives, from an expansive network of facial-recognition cameras which monitor their daily activity, to policecollecting DNA samples, fingerprints, iris scans, and blood types to keep a database of all its residents.

But the Chinese government strongly denied the figures, saying there was no mass imprisonment or "arbitrary detention".

Like this: