Turkey Calls on China to Close Internment Camps for Uyghur Muslims
12 February, 2019, 20:33 | Author: Lucille Rivera
The spokesperson informed that China has taken many counter-terrorism and de-extremism measures in the region as it has faced grave terror threats since the 1990s which severely threaten the safety of all people in Xinjiang.
"It is no longer a secret that more than 1 million Uyghur Turks incurring arbitrary arrests are subjected to torture and political brainwashing in internment camps and prisons", Aksoy said.
Since the 1990s, Uighur groups have tried to regain independence for East Turkestan, which China has vehemently quashed.
According to Human Rights Watch, during the next session of the Human Rights Council, from February 25 to March 22, 2019, the Council will consider the outcome report of China's November 2018 Universal Periodic Review, at which Chinese officials denied allegations of grave human rights violations in Xinjiang.
At a regular press briefing in Beijing on Monday, Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying declared that the video proved Heyit was alive and that the Turkish government had made an "extremely irresponsible" mistake that it should retract and apologize for.
That statement had come in response to a question about recent reports that Heyit, a well-known poet and musician, had died while in Chinese detention after he was reported to have been sentenced to eight years in prison for one of his songs.
"On this occasion, we invite the Chinese authorities to respect the fundamental human rights of Uyghur Turks and to close the internment camps", he said.
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Former detainees have recounted human-rights abuses inside the facilities, such as torture, drugging, and rape.
People protest at a Uighur rally on Feb 5, in front of the US Mission to the United Nations, to encourage the State Department to fight for the freedom of the majority-Muslim Uighur people unjustly imprisoned in Chinese concentration camps. "We respectfully commemorate Abdurehim Heyit and all our kinsmen who lost their lives defending their Turkish and Muslim identity", he said. Heyit was a master of the dutar, a type of two-stringed instrument with a long neck that is found in Iran and throughout Central Asia.
HRW said China has not responded positively to these requests.
"The reintroduction of concentration camps in the 21st century and the systematic assimilation policy of Chinese authorities against the Uighur Turks is a great embarrassment for humanity", Mr Aksoy said.
"Both China and Turkey face the arduous task of fighting terrorism".
China denied the existence of the so-called "de-radicalisation" facilities for months before saying they were, in fact, vocational training centres created to combat extremism.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had once accused China of "genocide" but has since established closer diplomatic and economic relations with Beijing.
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