Crackdown in Xinjiang prevented another Syria or Libya, says China's state media

13 Agosto, 2018, 09:26 | Author: Kelly Blake
  • China is holding Uyghur Muslims in ‘political indoctrination camps’ says UN panel

Massively stepped-up security in China's restive far western region of Xinjiang has helped prevent "great tragedy", a state-run newspaper said on Monday, in the country's first response to a critical United Nations report on the situation there.

China has said that Xinjiang faces a serious threat from Islamist militants who plot attacks and stir up tensions between the mostly Muslim Uyghur minority and the ethnic Han Chinese majority.

Gay McDougall, a member of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination raised the claims at the opening session of a two-day review of China's policies in Geneva saying Beijing had turned the autonomous region into "something resembling a massive internment camp, shrouded in secrecy, a sort of no-rights zone", in a bid to tackle religious extremism, The New York Times reported.

Hundreds have died in unrest there in recent years.

"Through the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China, the national strength of the country and the contribution of local officials, Xinjiang has been salvaged from the verge of massive turmoil", the newspaper said.

Expressing concern over the development of mass surveillance within the region, a member of the United Nations committee, Gay McDougall said that officials have engaged in the broad collection of DNA samples and introduced iris scanners to Xinjiang, and that Chinese authorities were deliberately targeting Muslim communities.

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"It has avoided the fate of becoming "China's Syria" or China's Libya,"' the paper said in the editorial carried in both its Chinese and English editions.

Global Times said the intense regulations in the region were merely "a phase that Xinjiang has to go through in rebuilding peace and prosperity".

The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying has stated however that "everyone can see that people of all ethnicities in Xinjiang live and work in peace and contentment and enjoy peaceful and progressing lives". "When the same evil influence was spreading in Xinjiang, it was decisively curbed".

Xinjiang has "no room for destructive Western public opinions", and all steps must be taken to ensure its stability, it said. With this as the goal, all measures can be tried.

"We must hold onto our belief that keeping turmoil away from Xinjiang is the greatest human right", the paper said.

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