Weekly Brief December 15th

World Uyghur Congress, 15 December 2017

Chinese Authorities Collect DNA from Millions of Uyghurs

It was widely reported this week that Chinese authorities have escalated their efforts to collect DNA samples and establish biometric profiles of the Uyghur people by making all Uyghurs between the ages of 12-65 give their finger prints, iris scans and blood types under the guise of a ‘Physicals for All’ public health program. The WUC congress has expressed its concern in the past over the practice of forcing Uyghurs to give their biological data in order to receive a passport, but this newest initiative represents a significant escalation.

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China collecting DNA, biometrics from millions in Xinjiang: report

CNN,  13 December 2017

By James Griffiths – Authorities in China’s far-west are collecting DNA samples, fingerprints, eye scans and blood types of millions of people aged 12 to 65, according to a new Human Rights Watch (HRW) report.

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Weekly Brief December 8th

World Uyghur Congress, 8 December 2017

Concerning New Counter-Espionage Rules Further Increase Powers of Chinese State Security Agents

New rules to China’s Counter-Espionage laws were adopted by the Chinese government on Wednesday, 6 December 2017. The new roles specify how China’s counter-espionage laws, which first were adopted in November 2014, should be implemented, as part of a series of new legal reforms pushed by Xi Jinping to counter perceived threats to national security.

The new rules give the Chinese state security agents sweeping new powers to arrest and investigate individuals they suspect of espionage. They give the security agents the authority to bar foreigners from entering the country if they have made negative comments about the Chinese government and to arrest and deport them if they are already in China. The new rules also widen the definition of espionage to include punishments for acts such as ‘using religion or cults to harm national security’. These WUC is very concerned with these measures. They will certainly be used to silence critics of the Chinese government domestically and abroad, as well as leading for further repression of the Uyghur people and further restrictions on religious freedom.

World Uyghur Congress Sends Letter To Canadian PM Ahead of Visit

The World Uyghur Congress sent a letter to the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, last week ahead of his anticipated visit to China to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The Trudeau government has been relatively silent on human rights issues in the past, but has emphasised that its “quiet diplomacy” has been effective in terms of moving forward on these issues.

With ever increasing repression in China and any dissent being met with force and violence, we rely on states who to speak up about human rights. It is the duty of the international community to respectfully call out those states that fail to live up to international human rights norms.

 

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China: Police ‘Big Data’ Systems Violate Privacy, Target Dissent

Human Rights Watch, 19 November 2017

By Human Rights Watch – The Chinese government should stop building big data policing platforms that aggregate and analyze massive amounts of citizens’ personal information, Human Rights Watch said today. This abusive “Police Cloud” system is designed to track and predict the activities of activists, dissidents, and ethnic minorities, including those authorities say have “extreme thoughts,” among other functions.

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Weekly Brief October 13th

World Uyghur Congress, 13 October 2017

WUC Holds Human Rights Advocacy Training Seminar in Sweden

Starting Friday, 13 October 2017, the World Uyghur Congress is holding a 3 day Human Rights Advocacy Training Seminar for Uyghur youth in Stockholm, Sweden, in partnership with the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) and the Sweden Uyghur Education Union.

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Authorities Require Uyghurs in Xinjiang’s Aksu to Get Barcodes on Their Knives

Radio Free Asia, 11 October 2017

By Kurban Niyaz – Authorities in Aksu prefecture in northwestern China’s Xinjiang region have begun implementing a government policy to affix identification codes to knives belonging to Uyghurs as a futher security measure in the restive area, sources from the prefecture said.

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China Orders Xinjiang’s Android Users to Install App That Deletes ‘Terrorist’ Content

Radio Free Asia, 14 July 2017

By Qiao Long and Xi Wang — Authorities in the northwestern region of Xinjiang have ordered local residents to install an app on their cell phones that will monitor their activity for “terrorist” content, local sources told RFA on Thursday.

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