Ankara (Turkey). In September 2022, the United Nations released a report on alleged human rights violations of ethnic Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in China. Turkey has expressed anger over Ankara’s support for the Uighurs, after publicly criticizing China for the first time over Beijing’s treatment of its Uighur minority, writes Federico Giuliani in InsideOver.
The report found that there was credible documentation of widespread custodial torture, sexual violence and forced labour, as well as forced abortions and sterilisations, in China’s Xinjiang region from 2017 to 2019. According to Inside Over’s report, Turkey publicly criticized China for the first time over Beijing’s treatment of its Uighur minority. In a press briefing on December 29, 2022, Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu said, “Defending the rights of Turkic Uyghurs in the international arena bothers China. But it is a human issue.”
He told reporters that Beijing had been irritated by Ankara’s refusal to grant extradition requests for the Uighurs, who were Turkish citizens and had settled in Turkey. In particular, Turkey has been one of the most hospitable countries for the Uighurs, with whom the Turks share ethnic, religious and linguistic ties. Roughly 50,000 Uyghurs live in Turkey, making it the largest Uyghur diaspora outside Central Asia.
The 48-page report concluded that “serious human rights violations” were committed by the Chinese government against Uighurs and other Muslims as part of China’s policies to fight terrorism and extremism. The foreign minister further stressed that Turkey wants to cooperate with China in a transparent manner, but the Chinese authorities did not allow the ambassador in Beijing to freely visit the area where the Uyghurs live, instead they wanted He follows the “schedule provided by him”.
Giuliani said he reminded Beijing about a commitment made by Chinese President Xi Jinping five years ago to allow a Turkish humanitarian delegation to visit and investigate the Xinjiang region, and to barricade travel Chinese officials were questioned. Although public criticism of China by Turkey is a rare occurrence, there have been instances in the past where Ankara has slammed Beijing for its mistreatment of Uighurs.
In 2019, Turkey raised the plight of minorities at the United Nations, condemning Beijing for “torturing” more than a million people. The condemnation had prompted the Chinese ambassador in Ankara to openly warn the Turkish government against publicly criticizing Beijing as it could have commercial and economic consequences.
Tags: beijing news, Chinese news, Turkish, world news
FIRST PUBLISHED : January 10, 2023, 17:52 IST