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World Uyghur Congress, 23 April 2020

Use this template letter (document)  to ask your own Member of Parliament to urge the government to take strong action to bring an end to China’s oppression of Uyghurs and other minorities.

Dear X MP,

China and Muslim Uyghurs

As your constituent, I write to express my extreme concern over the situation of Uyghurs and other Turkic-speaking ethnic groups in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) in China.

Up to 3 Million Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities are detained by the Chinese authorities in concentration, forced labour & prison camps in XUAR. There they face starvation, torture, murder, forced organ donation, and women are subject to widespread rape, forced sterilisation & abortion.

These people have not committed any crime. A system of advanced digital surveillance, including facial and voice recognition and collection of DNA, results in their arrest, interrogation and internment for reasons as trivial as contacting family abroad, attending Muslim faith schools or mosques, or for “suspicious acts” such as holding a prayer book or growing a new beard. The range of people detained, from elderly men and women, to academics, professionals, teachers and artists, undermines the official line that the camps are for ‘vocational training’ and “re-education”.

These camps operate without due process, outside legal jurisdiction, in violation of all international norms and domestic Chinese constitutional and criminal law.

China has created a surveillance state in Xinjiang working with companies such as HUAWEI and ZTE.

China’s world-leading reputation in surveillance is built on the oppression of Uyghur people.

The Chinese Government has been condemned for all these violations, but the UK Government and international community must do more to protect the Uyghurs and others in XUAR, given China’s recent assertion that all detainees have been freed, despite clear evidence this is untrue.

On January 27th the world observed Holocaust Remembrance Day and the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz. It pledged “Never Again”. However, the Uyghur Muslim suppression is the largest attempted genocide since the Holocaust, in whose aftermath the Universal declaration of Human Rights was drafted, enshrining the right to hold and express religious beliefs freely.

I, therefore, ask for your help by tabling a question in Parliament and writing directly to the UK Foreign Office on my behalf, asking the UK government to do the following:

1. Pass a “Uyghur Act” that will call for
 Sanctions under the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Act with respect to senior
Chinese officials directly responsible for the ongoing repression in XUAR.

 Restrictions on trade with all companies having critical roles in the suppression (such as surveillance technology produced by HUAWEI and ZTE) or produce items using forced labour (such as Chinese Cotton).

 Restrictions on research, collaborations and exchanges with Chinese institutions,
professional bodies and companies (such as Beijing Genomics Inc, and HUAWEI) that have critical roles in the suppression (including professions involved in forced organ harvesting, abortion and sterilisation).
UNTIL there is
(i) Complete closure of all concentration and other camps
(ii) Release of all detainees
(iii) Restoration of religious and cultural freedoms guaranteed by the Chinese
constitution for Uyghurs, other Turkic peoples and all religions in XUAR
(iv) Freedom to communicate with relatives abroad for Uyghurs and all ethnic

2. Demand full access of independent monitors to XUAR, including from the UN Office of the High
Commissioner for Human Rights.

3. Seek implementation of the recommendations in para. 42 (and other relevant recommendations) of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination’s August 2018 Concluding Observations on the combined fourteenth to seventeenth periodic reports of China (UN Document CERD/C/CHN/CO/14-17); and, Imposed Sanctions on individuals.

4. Make representations to the International Olympic Committee to remove the Winter Olympics 2022 from China for breaching the human rights and dignity provisions of the Olympic Charter.

5. Make representations to the UN to remove China from its Human Rights Committee and to the World Bank to cease loans to China. I urge you to call on the Government to work with like-minded countries to continue to forcefully condemn the oppression and abuse of Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples in XUAR.

Thank you for your attention and I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

Please find the full letter below: