Thursday, May 13, 2021

Western powers clash with China over Xinjiang at UN virtual meet | Al Jazeera

The United States, Germany and Britain have clashed with China at the United Nations over its treatment of the Uighurs and people from other mostly Muslim groups in Xinjiang, as they pressed ahead with a virtual event that Beijing had lobbied UN member states to stay away from.

“We will keep standing up and speaking out until China’s government stops its crimes against humanity and the genocide of Uighurs and other minorities in Xinjiang,” US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the event, which organisers said was attended by about 50 countries on Wednesday.

The UN, some western countries, academics and rights groups say hundreds of thousands of Uighurs have been sent to re-education camps in the far western region. China has acknowledged the camps’ existence but says they are vocational skills training centres necessary to tackle hardline groups.

“In Xinjiang, people are being tortured. Women are being forcibly sterilised,” Thomas-Greenfield said.

Amnesty International Secretary-General Agnes Callamard told the event there were an estimated one million Uighurs and predominantly Muslim ethnic minorities being arbitrarily detained.

In a note to UN member states last week, China’s UN mission rejected the accusations as “lies and false allegations” and accused the organising countries of being “obsessed with provoking confrontation with China”...

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