THE Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ) has spoken out over the “egregious” and “brutal” treatment of Uyghur and other minority communities in north-western China.
It comes amid the airing of drone footage that reportedly showed dozens of Uyghurs being blindfolded and led onto trains, as well as the seizure in New York of a shipment of weaves and other beauty accessories allegedly made out of human hair taken from an internment camp in the Xinjiang region.
“It is impossible to ignore persistent reports of hundreds of thousands of members of the Uyghur and other Muslim communities in China being rounded up and sent to re-education camps to pressure them into abandoning their religion, and other harsh government measures directed at reducing their numbers,” ECAJ president Jillian Segal said.
“In the face of official denials of these practices, we have seen shocking footage coming from north-western China of dozens of people kneeling, bound and blindfolded with their heads shaved being led onto trains by armed guards.”
She added, “While every government has the right and duty to protect its people from terrorism and violent separatist and other political movements, the suppression by forced reductions in population and mass transports of hundreds of thousands of people to detention centres, simply for expressing religious ideas and participating in religious worship, can have no justification, and is an egregious violation of fundamental human freedoms, dignity and rights.
“These crude and brutal measures are unworthy of any nation, let alone one that prides itself on having inherited the enlightened traditions of a great civilisation.”
Further coverage in this week’s AJN.