The re-education campaign in Xinjiang is ostensibly about stamping out islamic extremism. But Nathan Vanderklippe of the Globe and Mail reports that some who have been detained have nothing to do with Islam:
Six accounts from people who have recently lived in the region or have family there – three Christian Westerners, a lawyer, a Chinese petitioner and a Uyghur family living in France – reveal that others are also being incarcerated.
Some are Uyghurs who have converted to Christianity. Others are Han Chinese – the ethnic group that comprises more than 90 per cent of China’s population – who have challenged local authorities by petitioning for official redress, as well as people considered politically unreliable.
Other Xinjiang related news:
“The world has been noticeably quiet about Xinjiang,” reports Jane Perlez of the New York Times. “Backed by its diplomatic and economic might, China has largely succeeded in quashing criticism. Chinese officials have convinced countries to support Beijing publicly on the issue, most notably Muslim ones in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. They have played to the discord within the West over China. And they have waged an aggressive campaign to prevent discussion of Xinjiang at the United Nations.”
China is going on the the offensive about its Xinjiang policies, despite all the evidence showing the large scale human rights abuses being inflicted on Uyghurs:
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted that he had a “Sobering discussion with survivors of China’s reeducation camps in Xinjiang. China’s brutal campaign of repression against Uighurs and other Muslim minorities is appalling and the international community must demand an end to this blatant assault on Religious Freedom and Human Rights.”
John Sullivan, the U.S. deputy secretary of state, urged that “The UN must seek the immediate, unhindered and unmonitored access for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights” to Xinjiang, the SCMP reported. He also accused China of hosting “Potemkin” tours of camps in the past.
ChinaFile published a list of European companies that are working in Xinjiang. The list identifies 68 companies, from Volkswagen, to Carrefour, to UBS, to BASF. It’s likely that at least some of the companies are benefiting from forced labor — see Darren Byler’s earlier column, How companies profit from forced labor in Xinjiang.