Press Statement: UIGHURS – Repression in Xingjian
The present civil uprising in the North West region of China, in the so called autonomous province of Xingjian, should come as no surprise. Any community of people subjected to such severe violations of their human dignity will refuse to accept such treatment.
The Uighurs ( pronounced: We-goors), a community of Muslims, have been discriminated against for decades by the Chinese authorities. They are not allowed to participate in the economic wealth of the region, resulting in large scale unemployment, they cannot practise their religion and they are encouraged to become migrant labourers far away from their homes and families. Instead the Han Chinese are recruited to be employed in commerce, construction and mining industries. Modern housing developments are for the Han Chinese only. In reality the Uighurs have become second class citizens in the country. This influx of Han Chinese has resulted in constant friction and tension between these communities.
The Media Review Network abhors and condemns the brutal manner in which the Chinese police attempted to suppress the demonstrations. The harsh and severe religious restrictions placed on the local Muslim communities must be lifted. The legitimate demand of the Uighurs for full independence and sovereignty can no longer be denied or ignored by the Chinese authorities. The sooner this is realised, the quicker will there be a permanent and peaceful resolution to the problem.
Bibi Ayesha Laher
Media Review Network
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