Stop the abuse on Uyghur Muslims.

Auschwitz was the largest Nazi concentration camp in the 1940s, made to torture millions of Jewish prisoners. Today, Hitler’s barbaric acts are being mimicked within China’s horrific concentration camps used to torture trapped Uyghur Muslims.

At first the world of news and journalism was silent. China’s tight control and censorship over their media, allowed them to undertake their violent acts in hiding. However, social media became a voice against the inhumane acts, which slowly led to news stories being posted.

A recent article in The Guardian discusses how China’s desperate attempt to rid itself of the Uyghur culture, began with it forcing Muslim women to move away from their personal choice of wearing the niqab or hijab. This was just the first step to change their religious identity, as today multiple women are being raped and forced to marry Han Chinese men to get rid of the next generation of Uyghur Muslims. Yet, this persecution has been occurring for decades, since the presence of Islam in China;

‘Islam was introduced to China by envoys from the Middle East who travelled to meet Emperor Gaozong of the Tang Dynasty in the seventh century’.

The oppression began during the 18th century rule of the Qing Dynasty, when the state tried to assert control over parts of China, where majority of Muslims resided. The People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949 which divided citizens into 56 ethnic groups, 10 of which were Muslim minorities, including the Uyghur Muslims. These man-made divisions led to chaos in the Cultural Revolution, between 1966-1969, where; mosques were vandalised, Muslims were stopped from attending the holy pilgrimage of Hajj, Qurans were destroyed, and people were disallowed to freely express their religious beliefs.

We live in the 21st Century yet around 3 million Muslims are being abused and tortured in these camps because of their religious identity. Innocent children are separated from their families and placed into orphanages, where they are taught to hate their religion, and forced to adhere to the Chinese culture. Yet the Vice-Governor of this region, Erkin Tuniyaz, defended these camps at a UN Human Rights Forum as a supposed aim to; ‘educate those influenced by religious extremism’, and to prevent them from being ‘victims of terrorism’. This builds on the ongoing stereotype in the media, towards Muslims as being terrorists. Once again the attack on innocent Muslims is being veiled and justified by an apparent attempt to rid the world of terrorism. As it did post 9/11, when the USA’s bombing on Afghanistan, for their manhunt on ‘terrorism’, led to Muslim civilians being killed.

Does destroying mosques help clear the world of ‘terrorists’?

Several Mosques are being destroyed by China, to rid itself of Islam. The before and after images below, show a once standing Kargilik mosque, which has now disappeared;

Before
After

Suppressing Muslims from practicing their faith can affect them negatively as discussed by Peter Morey and Amina Yaqin in; Framing Muslims; Stereotyping and Representation after 9/11, who touch on how; ‘our identity is partly shaped by recognition or its absence, often by the misrecognition of others, and so a person or group of people can suffer real damage […] if the people or society around them mirror back to them a confining or demeaning or contemptible picture of themselves.’ Hence, if the ‘others’, in this case the Chinese regime, are dehumanising Muslims and painting them as wrongdoers, it can cause personal damage to them and the way they view themselves which works to control their minds.

The Guardian view on Xinjiang, China, also discusses the USA’s announcement of visa restrictions on Chinese officials believed to be responsible for the ill-treatment on Muslims. However, this will not stop the real extremists from continuing their barbaric torture in these murderous camps, that are being passed off as places of re-education for extremism. The world’s governments are still silent about the organs being harvested from the Muslims trapped inside these camps. Human lives are being destroyed for business purposes, and sold for financial gain, for the piece of paper which we call money.

So much more needs to be done by those in power, both from the West and the East, who can use their authority to put a stop to the ethnic cleansing occurring in China as we speak.

(717 words)

2 thoughts on “Stop the abuse on Uyghur Muslims.”

  1. I tacitly agree with Ilsa about your post on Uighur Muslims, but I would like to comment on the beginning of your post about comparing Nazi camps to Chinese detention facilities, as there is a vast difference through a clear obliteration of the Islamic religion, while the Nazis sought any systematic killing in the absence of communication and media. with Evolution In social media we see killing, arrest, rape and the world watching without lifting a finger.
    In a detailed article for the BBC channel about Uighur Muslims in China In 2018,( https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-45474279 )reports from human rights organizations in region Xinjiang reported that there were horrific conditions in the camps that were arrested in Uighur Muslims, in addition to forcing Muslims to learn Mandarin Chinese language and loyalty to the president, also It prohibits the practice of religious rites and beliefs. Some human rights organizations have reported that Chinese authorities have arrested Muslim people who communicate with relatives via WhatsApp in neighbouring countries such as Indonesia. I can say that the world is only busy expressing its concern and has been unable to crack down on the Chinese government.
    This issue has not received wide international attention, I do not know why? Is the answer is because China is a great country and is allowed to kill and displace. I will not fully agree with Ilsa on media coverage of this issue. In my opinion, there is a global disregard for this issue, and I wonder where the women’s rights organization from abuses and rape and force them to change their appearance, also I have not heard anything serious from UNICEF, which sponsors the rights of the child. In order to survey and change Islamic customs and traditions, in addition, I criticize the strange silence of Muslim countries such as Saudi Arabia and some countries that have not protested or based on severing their relations with China.
    Before concluding, I would like to thank Ilsa for discussing an important and fundamental issue on the situation of Muslims in China. On the last point of the demographic change of the region, I was not surprised by the destruction of mosques and the commission of crimes. So I say that the Chinese authorities are proceeding with ethnic cleansing with no impunity. It is the duty of the international community to shoulder its responsibilities and work to restrain the Chinese government with a package of sanctions to stop abuses. We must respect the beliefs and history of Muslims in this region, and not to offend them as terrorists. I concluded by saying that there are duties on the Islamic and global community to protect the vulnerable. I concluded my comment with the words for the philosopher Noam Chomsky. (https://proverbicals.com/freedom) “If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all”.

  2. Xinjiang’s history has always been steeped in moral, ethical and religious conflict. The dictatorship of The People’s Republic of China led by Mao Zedong saw strict cultural reforms including the establishment of state atheism. Mao’s anti-religious campaigns abolished a multitude of religions from Buddhism to Islam. Although his regime lasted until 1976 the positively seditious effects of forcing religious minorities underground has had a detrimental effect on the modern political landscape of China and specifically, as you mention, Xinjiang.

    I agree that the Uighur community have been completely disrespected and mistreat by the government as well as the wider global public. Post 9/11 perceptions of Islam and traditional representations of Eastern Muslims as a people to be continuously ‘othered’ appear to justify the lack of intervention from geo-political superpowers. For example, the continual representation of Muslims as ‘terrorists’ and ‘fundamentalists’ appear to have become the norm. A contemporary example being the cartoons depicting Muhammed produced by Jylannds-Posten in 2005.Is this because the circulation of global stereotypes that binarise the East and West have been so detrimental to representation we can no longer justify helping?

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