The Kazakh Connection to Chinese 'Political Education' Camps

Sergio Conner
September 14, 2018

China's Foreign Ministry urged United Nations human rights chief Michelle Bachelet to respect the country's sovereignty after she urged it to allow monitors into the restive far western region of Xinjiang and expressed concern about the situation there.

"The Trump administration is considering sanctions against Chinese senior officials and companies to punish Beijing's detention of hundreds of thousands of ethnic Uighurs and other minority Muslims in large internment camps, according to current and former American officials".

"We have a lot of tools at our disposal".

"The detention of as many as a million or more Uyghurs and other predominately Muslim ethnic minorities in "political reeducation" centers or camps requires a tough, targeted, and global response", they said in a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Nauert acknowledged that the State Department had received a letter from a bipartisan group of USA lawmakers at the end of August asking Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to impose sanctions on a number of Chinese officials accused of overseeing the policies.

In Bejing, Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang signaled that China did not want the United Nations to get involved.

"The Chinese government protects people's freedom of religion and people of all ethnic groups are fully entitled to freedom of religion".

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OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images A demonstrator wears a mask painted with the colors of the flag of East Turkestan, home to millions of Uighur Muslims under surveillance by the Chinese government.

A law student at the University of British Columbia named Shawn Zhang has been posting satellite photos online that he says show a network of re-education camps across Xinjiang, along with information about their location.

Until now, President Trump has largely resisted punishing China for its human rights record, or even accusing it of widespread violations.

Human Rights Watch released the most detailed and comprehensive report yet of witness testimony from the re-education camps in Xinjiang, and the families and lives torn apart by arbitrary detentions and the police state: "Eradicating ideological viruses": China's campaign of repression against Xinjiang's Muslims.

On Monday, the new United Nations Human Rights chief Michelle Bachelet became the latest high profile worldwide figure to speak out against alleged human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

Discussions have gained momentum within the U.S. government over possible economic penalties in response to reports of mass detentions of ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims in China's far western region, which have prompted an worldwide outcry.

As many as 13 million Muslims living in the region are increasingly subjected to mass arbitrary detention, torture and mistreatment by the Chinese government, the report noted.

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