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China needs rethink on Uighurs before more blood is spilt

Thu, 01/02/2014 - 16:26 -- Anonymous (not verified)
Uyghurs gathering in front of Idkah Mosque in Kashgar, East Turkestan. Photo: World Policy Blog

The bloody clash between ethnic Uighurs and the Chinese police that took place on December 15 in Xinjiang reflects a reality that rising China faces today. It was the fourth outbreak of such violence in Xinjiang since April, leaving at least 84 killed and 25 others injured. Then, on Monday, Chinese security forces killed eight people who allegedly attacked a police station in the region. As usual, Beijing called both incidents "terrorist" attacks, blaming a "violent terrorist gang" in Xinjiang, and scaled up security measures. However, enhanced security measures alone will not curb violence in the region, especially when the social and economic discontent of its Uighur minority remains unresolved.

China voices anger over release of Uighur Guantanamo trio

Thu, 01/02/2014 - 12:28 -- Anonymous (not verified)
Huzaifa, Abdullah, Khalil and Salahidin, four previously released Uyghurs in Bermuda in 2009 (Photo: William Farrington)

BEIJING: China voiced anger on Thursday over the transfer of three Uighurs from the US military prison in Guantanamo Bay to Slovakia, branding them "terrorists" who will pose a threat to their new home. The trio were freed earlier this week as part of Washington's efforts to close the jail, and were the last of 22 Uighurs to be held in the prison, with the others being resettled in six countries including Albania, Bermuda, El Salvador, Palau, and Switzerland. Beijing had previously protested about the release of the men, who it says have links with the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM), which the United Nations lists as a terrorist group and which China accuses of having separatist aims in Xinjiang.

U.S. Frees Last of the Chinese Uighur Detainees From Guantánamo Bay

Thu, 01/02/2014 - 12:19 -- Anonymous (not verified)
An abandoned section of the base in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, where 155 prisoners remain, about half cleared for release. Photo: Chantal Valery/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

WASHINGTON — In what the Pentagon called a “significant milestone” in the effort to close the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, the military announced Tuesday that the United States had transferred three Chinese detainees to Slovakia. The three were the last of 22 ethnic Uighurs from China who were captured after the American invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 and taken to Guantánamo. Although the military had decided that the three men were not at war with the United States and that they should be released — and a judge ordered them freed in 2008 — they remained stranded because of difficulties in finding a safe and agreeable place to send them.

Four Uyghur Women Forced to Abort Their Babies in Xinjiang

Thu, 01/02/2014 - 12:15 -- Anonymous (not verified)
A Uyghur woman with her children in Kashgar, Xinjiang, July 1, 2012. Photo: PHOTONONSTOP

Four Uyghur women in China's troubled northwestern region of Xinjiang have been forced by authorities to undergo abortions—one of them nine months into her pregnancy—under Beijing's brutally-enforced one-child policy, local officials and parents said. They were among six forced abortions that had been planned over the last week in Hotan prefecture in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, home to some 10 million mostly Muslim Uyghurs who say they have long suffered ethnic discrimination and oppressive religious controls under Beijing’s policies. "We had planned to perform forced abortions on six women. Four of them have already undergone the abortions," Eniver Momin, deputy chief of Hotan's Arish township where the mothers were injected with abortion-inducing drugs, told RFA's Uyghur Service.

Chinese Police Shoot Eight Dead in Xinjiang Clash

Thu, 01/02/2014 - 11:50 -- Anonymous (not verified)
Chinese Soldiers. Photo: CNN

BEIJING—Police shot and killed eight suspected assailants and arrested another person Monday in a clash outside a police station in the restive western region of Xinjiang, state media said. A brief report posted on the Xinjiang government's news website said the assailants, armed with machetes, attacked the police station in far western Yarkand county, throwing an explosive device that set fire to a police vehicle. The report's headline called the clash "a violent terrorist attack" but didn't provide further details about the suspects.

Uyghur Activist ‘Very Weak’ in Prison, Denied Family Visits

Fri, 12/27/2013 - 21:15 -- Anonymous (not verified)
Abduweli Ayup (R) with his wife and daughter while studying in the U.S. in 2010. Photo courtesy of the family via RFA

A Uyghur blogger and activist is “seriously ill” in prison in China’s troubled northwestern region of Xinjiang following his detention four months ago, according to concerned family members who have been barred by the authorities from meeting with him.The Chinese authorities have also refused to inform the family of the whereabouts of Abduweli Ayup, a 39-year-old active promoter of the Uyghur language, since he was arrested in August for allegedly illegally collecting donations to run Uyghur schools in Xinjiang.

Land-Grab Farmers in Xinjiang Held For Speaking to 'Hostile' Media

Fri, 12/27/2013 - 16:14 -- Anonymous (not verified)
Government slogans along a highway in the Qapqal Xibe Autonomous County in Xinjiang's Ili prefecture encouraging people to be profit-oriented. Photo: RFA

Authorities in the northwestern region of Xinjiang have detained and interrogated several farmers on suspicion of revealing state secrets and speaking to "hostile" media organizations, relatives said this week. The detentions came after local farming communities, who include ethnic minority Kazakhs, Uyghurs and Xibe, as well as migrant Han Chinese farmers, protested the canceling of their 30-year and 50-year land leases by officials in the Qapqal Xibe Autonomous County in Xinjiang's Ili prefecture. "They summoned my husband to the police station [where] I heard the police officer say that someone had called up Radio Free Asia," the wife of farmer Shen Zhihe told RFA's Mandarin Service. She said Shen was detained in a raid by armed police nearly a week ago, alongside several other outspoken farmers in the county who are fighting the loss of 12,000 hectares (120 square kilometers) of farmland which they invested in as part of a western development program begun in the late 1990s.

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