Blinken speaks with Uyghurs to hear about conditions in Chinese camps


US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on July 6 virtually met with seven Uyghur Muslims, including some detained in re-education camps in China, to learn about their experiences and seek advice on how to pressure China to end the repression.

The State Department said Blinken wanted to hear directly from former detainees, detainees’ relatives and Uyghur advocates.

Locked up in China: the fate of the Muslims of Xinjiang

Radio Free Radio / Radio Liberty is partnering with its sister organization, Radio Free Asia, to highlight the plight of Muslims living in the western province of Xinjiang in China.

China has come under international criticism and sanctions for detaining more than one million Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities for political re-education in the northwestern Xinjiang region.

China insists that the camps are “vocational training centers” aimed at helping people avoid terrorism.

“The secretary felt it was important to meet these people to hear their stories firsthand, to hear firsthand their impressions of the ongoing atrocities in Xinjiang and the internment of a million Uyghurs,” said State Department spokesman Ned Price.

Price noted that the Biden and Trump administrations called the campaign in Xinjiang “genocide” and imposed sanctions on China for human rights violations.

“America has spoken very clearly and consistently about the ongoing abuses, atrocities, genocide in Xinjiang,” Price said. “And, as we deem appropriate, I suspect we will be using additional tools in the future to hold the officials responsible for what happened there to account.”

The United States has steadily stepped up pressure on China on several issues in addition to the crackdown in Xinjiang. He also strongly opposed the treatment of democracy advocates in Hong Kong and demanded that China allow the World Health Organization to fully investigate the origins of the coronavirus.

Based on AP reports


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