Uyghurs in China: the UN report evokes crimes against humanity

Uyghurs in China: the UN report evokes crimes against humanity
Uyghurs in China: the UN report evokes crimes against humanity

In this document, the UN calls on the international community to react to the torture and violence experienced by the Uyghur minority in China.

On May 10, 2022, members of the Uyghur Muslim community show photos of their detained relatives in China. – AFP.
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Published on 1/09/2022 at 06:44
Reading time: 3 mins

Lhe long-awaited UN report on the Chinese region of Xinjiang, published in extremis on Wednesday, evokes possible “crimes against humanity” and mentions “credible evidence” of torture and sexual violence against the Uyghur minority and calls on the international community to act.

“The extent of the arbitrary and discriminatory detention of members of Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim groups (…) may amount to international crimes, in particular crimes against humanity,” said the report of just under fifty pages in its conclusions.

Former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, for whom it was the last day at the head of the High Commissioner after a four-year term, thus keeps her promise in extremis by allowing the document to be published shortly before midnight in Geneva.

If it does not seem to contain any revelations compared to what was already known about the situation in Xinjiang, this document brings the seal of the UN to the accusations leveled for a long time against the Chinese authorities.

Its publication had been the subject of intense pressure on the part of supporters for it to be implemented – in particular from the United States and major human rights NGOs – and, conversely, for the prevent seeing the light of day from Beijing, which considers the report a “farce” orchestrated by the West, Washington in the lead.

Torture, sexual violence

In this document, the UN called on the international community to act urgently in the face of accusations of torture and sexual violence in the Chinese region of Xinjiang that the organization considers “credible”.

“Allegations of recurring practices of torture or ill-treatment, including forced medical treatment and poor conditions of detention, are credible, as are individual allegations of sexual and gender-based violence,” writes the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in the report.

More than the content, it is the existence and the publication that are important in his eyes because that will oblige the United Nations Human Rights Council to take up the case.

On the other hand, China kept repeating all the bad things it thought of the document. At the UN in New York (United States), the Chinese ambassador Zhang Jun reaffirmed on Wednesday “to be firmly opposed to the report”.

“The so-called Xinjiang problem is a totally fabricated and politically motivated lie” that is holding back China’s development, he said, accusing Ms. Bachelet of “meddling in China’s internal affairs”.

Genocide charges

A quick search of the UN text does not bring up the word genocide.

A charge on the other hand brought against Beijing by the American government. In January, the French National Assembly, following in the footsteps of the representation of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and even Canada, had also qualified as “genocide” the treatment of the Uyghurs by China.

The article is in French

Tags: Uyghurs China report evokes crimes humanity

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