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Thursday, February 2, 2023

UN Claims China May Have Committed Inhumane Crimes in Xinjiang Province

According to the report, China disputes allegations of abuse against Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities

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Sadaf Hasan
Sadaf Hasan
Aspiring reporter covering trending topics

CHINA: China has pleaded with the UN to withhold the report, referring to it as a “farce” orchestrated by Western powers. According to the report, China disputes allegations of abuse against Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities.

However, investigators claimed to have found “credible evidence” of torture that may have constituted “crimes against humanity.” They accused China of utilising vague national security regulations to crack down on the rights of minorities and developing “systems of arbitrary imprisonment”.

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According to the report, inmates had been subjected to “patterns of ill-treatment,” ordered by the UN’s Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights. This included “incidents of sexual and gender-based violence.”

They said other people had to endure compulsory medical care and “discriminatory implementation of family planning and birth control legislation.”

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The UN urged China to act immediately to free “all persons arbitrarily deprived of their liberty” and warned that some of Beijing’s actions might constitute “the commission of international crimes, including crimes against humanity.”

Human rights organisations estimate that over a million people have been jailed in camps in the Xinjiang region of northwest China, despite the UN’s claim that it was unsure of the exact number of people being held by the authorities.

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The World Uyghur Congress, a federation of approximately 60 organisations, praised the findings and requested a prompt reaction from governments worldwide.

Director of the Uyghur Human Rights Project Omer Kanat remarked, “This is a game-changer for the world reaction to the Uyghur situation.” Despite the Chinese government’s adamant denials, the UN has formally acknowledged that terrible crimes are occurring.

Uyghurs make up the majority of the population of Xinjiang and number roughly 12 million. According to the UN, the issues raised in the report may also have impacted non-Muslim members.

On Thursday, its delegation to the UN human rights council in Geneva rejected the report’s conclusions, claiming they “smeared and slandered China” and meddled in the nation’s domestic affairs.

The statement stated that the US, other Western nations, and anti-China groups intend to use human rights as a political instrument, and “this so-called ‘evaluation’ is a politicised document that ignores the facts.”

Will things change in China?

The UN report is undoubtedly embarrassing and further undermines China’s claims that it is a responsible member of the global community.

However, this inquiry is merely the most recent of numerous devastating claims that Beijing has categorically denied.

Additionally, unusual is pressure from within the home. Since it has long been a taboo subject and is severely restricted, the problem of Uyghur human rights abuses hasn’t been a significant concern for many Chinese; as of Thursday afternoon, neither mainstream Chinese media nor social media platforms had covered the UN report.

When the Chinese government determines it has completely eliminated what it perceives as the threat of terrorism and extremism in the community, it will determine the Uyghurs’ fate.

According to Bachelet’s office, an investigation into claims of genocide in Xinjiang began more than a year ago.

However, the report’s publication was repeatedly postponed, which prompted some Western human rights organisations to claim that Beijing was pressuring her to hide unfavourable results.

She acknowledged that she was under “tremendous pressure to publish or not to publish” the report during a press conference last Thursday. She defended the delay, saying she was not “turning a blind eye” to the report’s contents by seeking communication with Beijing. 

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Human Rights Watch’s China director Sophie Richardson stated that the report’s conclusions demonstrated why the Chinese authorities battled tooth and nail to block the publishing” of the report inside a Chinese internment camp.

The UNHRC should use the findings to launch a thorough inquiry into the crimes against humanity committed by the Chinese government against the Uyghurs and others, she continued, and those responsible should be held accountable.

Also Read: Islam in Beijing Must be Chinese in Orientation: President Xi Jinping upon Visiting Uyghur Locale


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