Published: Fri, September 14, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Muslim minority in China's Xinjiang face 'political indoctrination'

Muslim minority in China's Xinjiang face 'political indoctrination'

The New York Times reports the sanctions would be against Chinese senior officials and some companies for violating human rights.

"We have a lot of tools at our disposal".

"Throughout the region, the Turkic Muslim population of 13 million is subjected to forced political indoctrination, collective punishment, restrictions on movement and communications, heightened religious restrictions and mass surveillance in violation of worldwide human rights law", it added.

Asked whether or not the U.S. was considering economic sanctions against Chinese officials accused of overseeing the policies, Nauert acknowledged the State Department had received a letter from members of Congress on the issue, but declined to discuss details of any potential government action. "But I'm not going to get ahead of any potential activity that the USA government may take", Nauert said.

"China consistently resolutely opposes the United States using Xinjiang-related issues to interfere in China's internal affairs", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said at a daily news briefing.

Chinese officials claim the camps are for "vocational education and employment training centers", or are for "criminals involved in minor offenses", according to Human Rights Watch.

Up to 1 million people, or about 7 percent of the Muslim population in Xinjiang, have now been incarcerated in an expanding network of "political re-education" camps, according to US officials and United Nations experts.

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The country is accused of running re-education camps, where Uighurs are forced to renounce aspects of their religious beliefs and ostensibly learn about Chinese culture.

OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images A demonstrator wears a mask painted with the colors of the flag of East Turkestan, home to millions of Uighur Muslims under surveillance by the Chinese government. "They may be subjected to solitary confinement, not be allowed to eat for a certain period, or required to stand for 24-hour periods, among other punishments", said HRW researcher Maya Wang.

Ethnic Kazakhs are increasingly being targeted in China's "Strike Hard Campaign Against Violent Terrorism" in the far western Xinjiang region, Human Rights Watch charges in a new report.

Astana, which shares a 1,000-kilometer border with Xinjiang, is trying to position itself as a key link in China's One Belt, One Road economic development initiative.

In May, Chinese state media said more than a million local Chinese Communist officials were being sent to live with local families in Xinjiang.

According to a 117-page report published over the weekend, the Chinese government conducted "mass arbitrary detention, torture and mistreatment" of Uighur Turks in the region.

Last month, a United Nations human rights panel held a two-day session on China's policies in Xinjiang, and raised alarm over "credible reports" of that China had turned Xinjiang into "something resembling a massive internment camp, shrouded in secrecy, a sort of no-rights zone".

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