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Uyghurs live in China's 'dystopian hellscape', Amnesty says

People gather in Turkey to stage a protest against China's policies and human rights violations towards Uyghurs on 25 March 2021 [Eren Bozkurt/Anadolu Agency]
People gather in Turkey to stage a protest against China's policies and human rights violations towards Uyghurs on 25 March 2021 [Eren Bozkurt/Anadolu Agency]

China's far western region of Xinjiang has become a "dystopian hellscape" where Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim ethnic minorities face systematic and state-organised "mass internment and torture amounting to crimes against humanity", human rights group Amnesty says.

More than 50 former camp detainees shared new testimony with Amnesty, providing detailed inside accounts of the conditions and treatment of Uighurs and other groups in the internment camps sanctioned by Chinese authorities since 2017.

In a report published yesterday, Amnesty says it provides the most comprehensive account ever of life inside the internment camps.

The evidence Amnesty International has gathered provides a factual basis for the conclusion that the Chinese government has committed at least the following crimes against humanity: imprisonment, torture and persecution.

From late 2019 to mid 2021, Amnesty has been investigating these abuses, the group says.

On Wednesday, a CNN report raised concern about the deportation of Uyghurs from Muslim countries.

Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Saudi Arabia have been named among the countries that are deporting Uyghur Muslims to China.

The Uyghurs, a predominantly Muslim Turkic-speaking ethnic group primarily from China's northwestern region of Xinjiang, have been subject to religious and ethnic persecution by Chinese authorities in recent years. More than one million have been held in detention camps, the United Nations said last year.

READ: Uyghur activists welcome Qatar withdrawal from support for China crackdown

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