China Is Committing ‘Crimes Against Humanity’ On Uighur Muslims, Human Rights Group Says
Human Rights Watch has expressed concerns that China is committing ‘crimes against humanity’ on Uighur Muslims.
Disturbing reports have come to light in the last 12 months which detailed what some Uighur people are being subject to while being detained in Chinese governments’ so-called ‘re-education camps’. Many of these camps are thought to have been going since 2017.
In one report released in February, there were allegations of rape and torture after Uighur Muslims had their religious and other freedoms taken away from them.
Last month, another report was released which claimed that China was forcibly taking away Uighur Muslims’ children. Since then, Chinese websites have been found to be advertising groups of Uighur people for labour.
In the wake of these harrowing stories, Human Rights Watch has condemned the country’s actions and released a 53 page-long incitement detailing a policy of mass incarceration, torture, disappearances, and cultural erasure in Xinjiang, Insider reports. Xinjiang is where the majority of the detention facilities are located.
Sophie Richardson, Human Rights Watch’s China director, said in a statement:
Chinese authorities have systematically persecuted Turkic Muslims — their lives, their religion, their culture. Beijing has said it’s providing ‘vocational training’ and ‘deradicalization,’ but that rhetoric can’t obscure a grim reality of crimes against humanity.
Beth Van Schaack, of the Stanford Center for Human Rights & International Justice, agreed saying, ‘It’s increasingly clear that Chinese government policies and practices against the Turkic Muslim population in Xinjiang meet the standard for crimes against humanity under international criminal law.’
Human Rights Watch has since called on the United Nations Human Rights Council to launch an investigation into China’s actions.
The likes of the US and UK have gone on to impose sanctions on China in the wake of these reports. British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announced last month, ‘The evidence of widespread human rights abuses in Xinjiang cannot be ignored. […] Working with our international partners we are imposing targeted sanctions to hold those responsible to account.’
Human Rights Watch has encouraged other countries to do the same as well imposing travel bans. Richardson said, as per Insider, ‘That China is a powerful state makes it all the more important for holding it accountable for its unrelenting abuses.’
Since these reports have been released, China has continuously denied any wrongdoing and claimed that these camps are there to ‘wash brains, cleanse hearts, strengthen righteousness and eliminate evil’.
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