U.S. voices concern on China's Muslim crackdown, sanctions weighed

  • U.S. voices concern on China's Muslim crackdown, sanctions weighed

U.S. voices concern on China's Muslim crackdown, sanctions weighed

China urged the United States on Wednesday to abandon its "prejudice" over Xinjiang, as the Trump administration considers sanctions against Chinese officials and companies linked to allegations of human rights abuses in the Chinese region.

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

As Alexander Lukin, director of the East Asian and the SCO Studies Center of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, said in an interview with Vestnik Kavkaza, the U.S. doesn't care about minorities - they use Muslim theme as an excuse to put more pressure on China.

The bipartisan Congressional-Executive Commission on China sent Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin a letter two weeks ago urging them to adopt sanctions against government officials "complicit in human rights abuses" as well as entities that help the government to carry out "mass detentions and surveillance of ethnic minorities".

Reacting to Bachelet's comments, China's foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said on Tuesday that she should "scrupulously abide by the mission and principles of the United Nations charter".

"The Chinese government protects people's freedom of religion and people of all ethnic groups are fully entitled to freedom of religion".

The new human rights commissioner also said she was concerned about the humanitarian suffering in Yemen's civil war, asking for greater transparency from the intervening coalition headed by Saudi Arabia and promising to closely follow steps taken to hold the perpetrators of airstrikes on civilians accountable.

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.

Up to 1 million people, or about 7 percent of the Muslim population in Xinjiang, have now been incarcerated in an expanding network of "political re-education" camps, according to US officials and United Nations experts.

After months of discussions, the Trump administration is considering sanctions against China over detaining thousands of minority Muslims in internment camps. "They may be subjected to solitary confinement, not be allowed to eat for a certain period, or required to stand for 24-hour periods, among other punishments", said HRW researcher Maya Wang.

In May, Chinese state media said more than a million local Chinese Communist officials were being sent to live with local families in Xinjiang.

China has branded reports of such camps "completely untrue", saying that the "education and training centres" to which "minor criminals" are assigned serve merely "to assist in their rehabilitation and reintegration".

Hundreds of thousands have reportedly been detained in the northwest region of Xinjiang, where they're expected to denounce Islam and learn about Chinese culture.