This photo, taken on June 4, 2019, shows the Chinese flag fluttering over the Juma Mosque in the restored old town of Kashgar in China’s western Xinjiang region.
Greg Baker | AFP | Getty Images
China has urged United Nations member states not to attend an event Germany, the United States and Britain have planned next week to suppress Uighur Muslims and other minorities in Xinjiang. This emerges from a message from Reuters on Friday.
“It is a politically motivated event,” China’s U.N. mission wrote in Thursday’s note. “We ask your mission NOT to participate in this anti-China event.”
China accused the organizers of the event, which includes Australia and Canada as well as several other European countries, of “using human rights issues as a political tool to interfere in China’s internal affairs such as Xinjiang, create division and turmoil and disrupt China’s development.” “
“They are obsessed with provoking a confrontation with China,” the note said. “The provocative event can only lead to more confrontation.”
The Chinese Mission to the United Nations confirmed the note and China’s opposition to the event.
The United States, Germany and Great Britain ambassadors will speak ahead of the virtual event in the United States on Wednesday, along with Ken Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, and Agnes Callamard, Secretary General of Amnesty International.
The aim of the event is “to discuss how the U.N. system, member states and civil society can support and advocate the human rights of members of ethnic Turkish communities in Xinjiang,” read an invitation.
Western states and rights groups have accused the authorities in Xinjiang of arresting and torturing Uyghurs in camps in what the United States has termed genocide. In January, Washington banned imports of cotton and tomato products from Xinjiang on allegations of forced labor.
Beijing denies the allegations and describes the camps as vocational training centers to combat religious extremism.
“Beijing has tried for years to silence governments, but that strategy has failed miserably as more states step forward to express horror and disgust at China’s crimes against Uyghurs and other Turkish Muslims,” said Louis Charbonneau, UN Human Rights Watch director Friday.