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Syria defends China’s Uyghur policy after US condemnation

Anti-China protest outside White House [Flickr]
Anti-China protest outside White House [Flickr]

The Syrian regime has defended China after the US Congress condemned the People’s Republic for its human rights violations and abuse of the Uyghur Muslims.

Syria’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement yesterday defending China following the US condemnation, stating that it is a “blatant interference by the US in the internal affairs of the People’s Republic of China.”

“Syria emphasises the right of China to preserve its sovereignty, people, territorial integrity, and security and protect the security and property of the state and individuals,” it concluded.

The bill, which was passed on Tuesday by the US House of Representatives in a 407-1 vote, condemned the “gross human rights violations” against the Uyghur Muslim minority within China and called for “an end to arbitrary detention, torture, and harassment of these communities inside and outside China.”

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Following the bill, Chinese officials expressed outrage, among them a spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry Hua Chunying who claimed that “The US attempts to sow discord among various ethnic groups in China…and contain China’s growth. But its attempts will never succeed.”

As of yet, Syria is the only country to have publicly criticised the move taken by the US Congress and is one of the primary countries that has defended China despite the increasing validity and reliability of the devastating revelations emerging of the human rights abuses on the Uyghurs. The violations include China’s detainment of them in concentration or “re-education” camps, the forced marriage and rape of Uyghur women to Han Chinese men, the repression on Islam and other religions in the face of enforced atheism, and widespread torture.

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The Chinese government launched the crackdown in its far-western Xinjiang province in 2013 after it claimed there had been a rise in terrorism and extremism from the Uyghur Muslims, but has since consistently denied the existence of the concentration camps and the aforementioned atrocities despite growing evidence and international concern. It is estimated that Chinese authorities could be holding up to one million Muslims in those camps.

Syria’s jump to defend China comes in return for the People’s Republic’s staunch support for the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad and his war against the opposition groups in the Syrian conflict over the past nine years.

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Asia & AmericasChinaMiddle EastNewsSyriaUS
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