RFA: Xinjiang Authorities Holding Hundreds From Kyrgyz Village in ‘Political’ Re-education Camps

Authorities in northwest China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) are holding around one-fifth of the residents of a village in the region’s Kizilsu Kirghiz (in Chinese, Kezileisu Keerkezi) Autonomous Prefecture in “political” re-education camps, according to officials.

Beginning in April 2017, Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim minorities accused of harboring “strong religious views” and “politically incorrect” ideas have been jailed or detained in re-education camps throughout Xinjiang, where members of the ethnic groups have long complained of pervasive discrimination, religious repression, and cultural suppression under Chinese rule.

An ethnic Kyrgyz officer at the Charlong Township Police Station, in Kizilsu Kirghiz’s Akto (Aketao) county, recently told RFA’s Uyghur Service that hundreds of residents of the town’s Payiz village—a Kyrgyz-populated area of more than 1,500 people—have been sent to the camps.

“There are more than 300 … they are all Kyrgyz people,” said the officer, speaking on condition of anonymity.

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