Unabashed China owns up to Uighur suppression

Opinion
ovember 01, 2018 01:00

By The Nation

In an example of terrible overreaction, scattered violence has triggered the abuse of an entire community 

Months after news reports began circulating in the global media, the Chinese government has finally acknowledged the existence of a large network of “re-education camps” for Muslim citizens – ethnic minority Uighurs in the Xinjiang autonomous region.

China maintains that distorted notions have given the people in these camps separatist ambitions that threaten Chinese unity under the communist ideology. They must thus be shown the error of their ways, Beijing insists, for their own good and the good of national security. It has assured the detainees’ family members that their loved ones are being well cared for and are not subjected to forced labour, as has been alleged. 

There are about 11 million ethnic Uighurs and one million Kazakhs in the historically contested Xinjiang region of northwestern China. They speak a Turkic language and see their roots as being embedded in a wholly different civilisation. In recent years, activists in the region have sought independence, their struggle incorporating some elements of extremism and making room for radical Muslim groups to grow. This is what sparked the government backlash, but it appears to be a horrible overreaction.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT THE NATION

Categories: 
Share/Save