‘Truth and reconciliation’: Excerpts from the Xinjiang Clubhouse

SupChina. 3 March 2021

Below is an article published by SupChina. Photo:AFP

On Saturday, February 6, two days before it would be banned across China, the social media app Clubhouse had a defining moment. As numerous news outlets have reported, a room called “Is there a concentration camp in Xinjiang?” attracted a brief flourishing of speech and free discussion among Chinese people in the era of state censorship.

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‘If the others go I’ll go’: Inside China’s scheme to transfer Uighurs into work

BBC. 3 March 2021

Below is an article published by BBC. Photo:AFP.

The government denies that it is attempting to alter the demographics of its far-western region and says the job transfers are designed to raise incomes and alleviate chronic rural unemployment and poverty.

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How Beijing uses family videos to try to discredit Uyghur advocates

Hong Kong Free Press. 28 February 2021

Below is an article published by Hong Kong Free Press. Photo:Google Earth.

Those who have escaped the region believe their relatives face restrictions in communicating with them. As the silence grows, many hear rumours that their mothers, fathers, siblings, or friends have been sent to detention centres. Without a response from the Chinese state, overseas Uyghurs turn to campaigning, believing that international pressure may save their loved ones.

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Sportblog Winter Olympics Boycott questions over Beijing Winter Olympics raise eerie echoes of 1936

The Guardian. 1 March 2021

Below is an article published by The Guardian. Photo:Kevin Frayer/Getty Images

History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes. I am staring at two bundles of newspaper clippings – one present day, one past – and feeling a deepening chill. The first pile details China’s treatment of the Uighur Muslim population in Xinjiang, where more than a million people have been “re-educated” in camps, as well as the calls for the 2022 Winter Olympics to be stripped from Beijing. The second is from the Manchester Guardian in 1935, recording the abuse of Jews in Germany and demanding a boycott of the Berlin Games. The echoes are eerie. The looming question, then as now, is what the world should do.

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Leading Lawyers Conclude China is Committing Crimes against Humanity and Genocide in East Turkistan
The Global Legal Action Network (GLAN), in partnership with the World Uyghur Congress (WUC) and Uyghur Human Rights Project (UHRP), has obtained an authoritative legal opinion on the treatment of Uyghurs by Chinese authorities. In what is the first legal opinion published by barristers pursuant to formal instructions, leading lawyers at Essex Court Chambers (London), led by Alison McDonald QC, conclude that the available evidence credibly establishes that crimes against humanity and the crime of genocide have been committed.

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Statement: Coalition Calls on IOC to Announce Human Rights Due Diligence Plan ahead of Beijing 2022 Olympics

End Uyghur Forced Labour, 03.02.2021
Below is an article published by End Uyghur Forced Labour, Photo End Uyghur Forced Labour.

The Coalition to End Uyghur Forced Labour joins the call for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to articulate its human rights due diligence plan this month, in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights, for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics—one year ahead of the start of the Games.

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PRESS RELEASE: Over 180 Rights Groups and Activists call on Governments to Commit to a Diplomatic Boycott of Beijing 2022 

Press Release – For immediate release
03 February 2021
Contact: World Uyghur Congress
+49 89 5432 1999 or [email protected]

Activists warn anything less will be an endorsement of China’s blatant disregard for civil and human rights

The IOC has failed to uphold ‘Olympic Values’ so far, but still have time to reverse past mistakes’ 

Today, just one-year ahead of the opening of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, a coalition of Tibetan, Uyghur, Southern Mongolian, Hong Kong, Taiwanese, Chinese Democracy, and human rights campaign groups issued an open letter [1] to governments warning they must support a diplomatic boycott the Games or risk emboldening China’s appalling rights abuses and crackdowns on dissent. The letter was launched as part of a global campaign marking the year-countdown to the proposed opening of the 2022 Games. [2]  

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Leaked Chinese Police Database Reveals Mass Surveillance of Uyghurs
On 29 January, the Intercept analyzed millions of leaked files from a massive Chinese police database, centered on Ürümqi, which offer an inside view of mass surveillance facilitating repression and arbitrary detainment of Uyghurs in the internment camp system. The analysis reveals that police use community informants such as text messages, phone contacts, e-commerce and banking records to collect massive amounts of information on Uyghurs in Ürümqi. Moreover, invasive surveillance techniques are found to watch for signs of religious enthusiasm, which are generally equated with extremism. Wearing a long beard or a headscarf, talking to relatives living abroad, or visiting other countries are hence categorized by the Chinese government as extremist behaviour. These categorizations mirror those of the earlier reported “Aksu list”. Together, these government files show how Uyghurs are targeted by Chinese authorities for everyday, lawful behaviour.

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