China’s activities against its Turkic Muslim people were formally labeled “Crimes Against Humanity” by Amnesty International on Thursday.
Uighurs and other Muslim minorities residing in China’s Xinjiang province “experience systematic state-organized mass detention, torture, and persecution amounting to crimes against humanity,” according to a 160-page study issued in connection with the declaration.
Amnesty International, based in the United Kingdom, is an international non-governmental organisation dedicated to human rights. For years, the group claims, it has been researching alleged crimes in Xinjiang.
The article includes scores of new accounts from Turkic Muslims who claim they were tortured while being held in China’s so-called “vocational facilities.” Forced sterilization — or forced birth control — has been claimed by women in particular.
Another study found that over the next 20 years, Chinese birth-control efforts might prevent up to 4.5 million births among the Muslim minorities in Xinjiang.
Journalists and human rights organisations have been paying more attention to China’s Xinjiang province in recent years. According to the US State Department and human rights advocates, up to 3 million Turkic Muslims are or have been held in these “vocational facilities” across the area.
The Chinese government does not dispute the facilities’ existence, instead claiming that they are part of “anti-terrorism and de-radicalization measures in Xinjiang in compliance with the law to protect people’s lives.”
China has been accused of genocide in Xinjiang by certain Western countries, including the United States.
“In the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, the Chinese authorities have built a dystopian hellscape on a massive scale,” said Amnesty International Secretary General Agnès Callamard.
According to the purported camp survivors who talked to Amnesty International, they were initially interviewed in Chinese police stations and had their biometric and medical data captured before being sent to a camp.
They allege they were forced to sit in “tiger seats,” a medieval gadget that causes pain if the passenger moved. More than a dozen survivors told ABC News they were subjected to the same style of chair in a Chinese jail.
Other organisations have praised Amnesty International’s inquiry and findings.
Human Rights Watch China Director Sophie Richardson stated, “It’s totally terrible evidence — it emphasizes the urgent need for an impartial inquiry under UN auspices into Chinese government crimes against humanity against Uyghurs and other Turkic populations.” “No government, especially a powerful one, should be allowed to commit human rights violations.”
The paper highlights the Chinese government’s aim to eradicate Islamic culture and heritage, labeling the majority of practicing Turkic Muslims in the region as fanatics.
According to the Amnesty International research, most people in Xinjiang have ceased praying or displaying any visible evidence of practicing Islam because they are afraid of being imprisoned or worse. This goes to how you dress, groom yourself, and even how you speak.