Muslim Uighurs in China's Xinjiang region facing arbitary detentions: Human Rights Watch

Muslim Uighurs in China's Xinjiang region facing arbitary detentions: Human Rights Watch

Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin requesting that sanctions be applied and for additional measures to be taken against government officials.

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

China on Tuesday told the new United Nations human rights chief to respect its sovereignty after she called for access to its regions following "deeply disturbing" allegations of mass detentions of Muslim minorities.

There were reports in May that said the Chinese government had detained hundreds of thousands of Muslims and made them undergo re-education.

It is estimated that in the area, one million are now detained in re-education camps where they are forced to learn Mandarin and sing the praises of the Chinese Communist Party.

Last month, a United Nations rights panel said it had received credible reports that up to one million ethnic Uighurs may be held in extra-legal detention in Xinjiang, and called for them to be freed.

Around 1 million Uighur Muslims are being held in "political education centers" where detainees are reportedly forced to reject their religious and ethnic identities and are required to recite Chinese laws and policies.

"If they resist, or officials deem they have failed their lessons, they are punished".

Human Rights Watch Warns of 'Massive Crackdown' on China's Muslims

And then on Tuesday, the ministry attacked the UN human rights chief: "the UN Human Rights High Commissioner and her office should abide by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, respect China's sovereignty, fairly and objectively fulfill its duties, and not listen to and believe one-sided information".

Calling the allegations against China "deeply disturbing", Bachelet said Beijing had to allow access to the region for impartial observers.

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.

It isn't the first time the Chinese government has been accused of oppressing minorities in Xinjiang or other parts of the country.

Officials from the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination said various reports from the region indicate that Muslims are "being treated as enemies of the state exclusively on the basis of their ethno-religious identity".

The region has become one of themost intrusive police states in the world, and government surveillance of Muslim Uighurs permeates nearly every aspect of their lives, from an expansive network of facial-recognition cameras which monitor their daily activity, to policecollecting DNA samples, fingerprints, iris scans, and blood types to keep a database of all its residents.

The Chinese government has not yet commented on this particular report but has denied similar allegations of mistreatment in the past.

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