WEEKLY BRIEF – 19 FEBRUARY 2021

NEWS

WUC Awards Camp Survivors
On February 13, the WUC hosted a virtual meeting to highlight the courage of all the camp survivors. These brave Uyghurs and Kazakhs who witnessed first hand the genocidal crimes of the Chinese Communist Party shared their testimonies with the international community and gave a better understanding of the severity of the situation. WUC applauds every single of them and appreciates their immense contribution to the cause. To show its gratitude, the WUC has awarded the camp survivors with an award for their bravery and each of them was presented with a contribution of 1000 euros.

WUC Delivers Statement at Intersessional Meeting on the Prevention of Genocide
The WUC delivered a statement during the UN Human Rights Council’s Intersessional Meeting on the Prevention of Genocide, urging the and its member states to act and prevent the Uyghur Genocide. In her statement, WUC Advocacy Manager Zumretay Arkin pointed out that severe sexual abuses in the camps,forced mass sterilization, and other severe crimes committed by the Chinese government fit the criteria of genocide under the UN Genocide Convention. In their right of reply, the Chinese delegation tried to prevent WUC, an international organisation with valid accreditation, from speaking on Uyghur human rights issues at the UN.

More than 50 Irish Faith leaders Condemning China’s Crackdown on Uyghurs
On February 16th, the Irish Times reported that more than 50 Irish faith leaders have signed a statement condemning China’s “potential genocide” against Uyghurs, including the Church of Ireland Archbishop Michael Jackson of Dublin. “After the Holocaust, the world said ‘never again’”, the statement read. “Today, we repeat those words ‘never again’, all over again. We stand with the Uighurs.” The WUC welcomes this statement; religious leaders from various religious communities have been important supporters of WUC’s work.

Swiss Foreign Policy Committee Votes against Genocide Designaiton
On February 17, the Swiss Foreign Policy Committee of the National Council voted 11 to 13 against designating the crimes against Uyghurs as crimes against humanity. The World Uyghur Congress regrets this narrow decision and calls on the Swiss authorities to take concrete actions to prevent an Uyghur Genocide. In the recent past, the Canadadian Subcommittee on Human Rights, the USA and leading lawyers at Essex Court Chambers have concluded that the crimes committed against Uyghurs fufill the criteria of genocide. It is imperative that other countries issue similar examinations.

EU Parliament Office Barcelona Dialogue on the Situation of the Uyghurs
On the Occasion of 2019 Sakharov Prize awarded to Ilham Tohti and the resent European Parliament resolution on the situation in East Turkistan, the EU Parliament Office Barcelona hosted a Dialogue on the situation of the Uyghurs with MEP Izaskun Bilbao, WUC President Dolkun Isa and member of ICIJ, Daniele Grasso. The speakers discussed how the Uyghur crisis has developed since then, and what concrete measures the European Union and its member states can take to end the Uyghur genocide.

Uyghur Students Died in Forced Labour Program
On February 18, Radio Free Asia reported that two Uyghur high school students, who were sent to pick cotton as part of a forced labour transfer scheme, have died during a fire in a dormitory . These two young men – 16-year-old Nabijan Rozi and another boy, have been sent from their hometowns to pick cotton amongst 2000 other students. Their dormitory, where they were sleeping with 30 other people, caught fire in the middle of the night, last autumn. In an effort to conceal the incident and to prevent outrage from the Uyghur families, Chinese authorities “secretly” buried at least one of the boys.