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Weekly Brief, 14 June

Weekly Brief, 14 June

NEWS

Civil Society Organisations Call for Suspension of EU-China Human Rights Dialogue
Ahead of the 39th EU-China human rights dialogue, the World Uyghur Congress, along with Amnesty International, Frontline Defenders, Human Rights Watch, and the International Service for Human Rights, has sent a letter to the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, calling for the suspension of the dialogue. On June 16, the European delegation will travel to Chongqing for the dialogue, which will also include a field visit to Tibet.

The letter outlines the increasing human rights violations under Xi Jinping’s regime since 2013, including egregious violations against Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples in East Turkistan, which amount to genocide and crimes against humanity, repression in Tibet, and restrictions on the rights and freedoms of people in Hong Kong. Emphasising the ineffectiveness of the dialogue, which has persisted through 38 rounds without meaningful progress, the letter criticises the EU’s approach, noting that the Chinese government consistently refuses to acknowledge human rights abuses or take accountability, rendering the dialogues unproductive. The letter also urges for alternative, more effective measures to compel the Chinese government to halt its serious human rights violations and to ensure accountability for those responsible.

Five Uyghurs Sentenced to Seven Years in Prison
On June 10, it was reported that five Uyghur men in East Turkistan were sentenced to long prison terms for their association with Kasim Kashgar, a former employee of Voice of America who fled to the USA in 2017. The men—Mirkamil Ahmed, Semet Ababekri, Abdukadir Rozi, Mehmut Abdukeyum, and Akber Osman—each received sentences of at least seven years in prison, accused of being members of terrorist and separatist organisations. These accusations are a common tactic used by the Chinese government to imprison Uyghurs. Mr. Kashgar was accused of recruiting activists for the World Uyghur Congress.  Gheyyur Kurban, the WUC Berlin office director, denied these claims, stating, “We are fully aware that any contact with individuals in our homeland poses a serious threat to their lives and well-being. Therefore, we have never actively sought to make contact.”

German Economic Minister Considers Suspending German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act
On June 10, Table Media reported on German Economic Minister Robert Habeck’s suggestion to suspend the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act for two years, until the EU counterpart comes into force. Habeck’s idea has drawn strong criticism from WUC Berlin Office Director, Gheyyur Kurban. He warned, “The protection of human rights seems to be negotiable. Habeck’s reasoning undermines years of efforts and progress in the field of human rights and climate justice and shows a dangerous indecisiveness in politics.”

Stop Uyghur Genocide Sends Public Letter to UK Political Parties
In a public letter by the Campaign Stop Uyghur Genocide, the UK political parties—Labour, the Liberal Democrats, and the Conservative Party—were asked to formally recognize the Uyghur genocide, establish an import ban on products made by Uyghur forced labor, and bolster the UK’s modern slavery laws. They were also urged to stand against emerging technologies reportedly being used for “forced genetic surveillance and discrimination.” Rahima Mahmut, Director of the World Uyghur Congress UK Office and Executive Director of Stop Uyghur Genocide, said, “Recognizing the Uyghur genocide is vital to any considered China strategy, as it would enable the government, industry, and academia to align against Chinese private sector companies complicit in the genocide.”

PARTICIPATE 

Join Us on July 5th to Commemorate the Urumchi Massacre
Join the World Uyghur Congress, the UK Uyghur Community and Workers Against the CCP on July 5th to commemorate 15 years since the Urumchi Massacre. For more information visit here.

Run as Delegate in the 8th General Elections of the World Uyghur Congress
Submit your candidacy for the 8th General Elections of the World Uyghur Congress by June 30, 2024! All Uyghurs aged 18 and above are eligible to apply to participate in the delegate elections on July 28, 2024, in your country.

Ask Volkswagen to Close its Plant in East Turkistan
Despite growing evidence of the ongoing genocide against the Uyghurs, Volkswagen continues to operate in East Turkistan. The World Uyghur Congress is collecting signatures to demand Volkswagen to close down its plant in Urumqi. Please sign here!

Support Uyghurs’ Genocide & Crimes Against Humanity Case in Argentina
The World Uyghur Congress and the Uyghur Human Rights Project have launched a criminal case in the courts of Argentina in relation to the international crimes of genocide and crimes against humanity being committed against the Uyghur people. Please donate and be a part of this historic case.