Category Archives: Eastern Turkestan

Newsweek: China Is Holding My Uyghur Mother Prisoner. Will President Biden Say Her Name?

China Is Holding My Uyghur Mother Prisoner. Will President Biden Say Her Name?
Ziba Murat, daughter of Dr. Gulshan Abbas

The 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing is well underway. Millions of people will likely tune in to see the spectacle that China has orchestrated—everything from the choreographed pageantry of the Opening Ceremonies to the man-made snow blanketing the ski slopes. China wants the Olympics to project its economic might and global dominance. But for me, the images on the screen will be a bleak reminder of China’s oppression and persecution, on a very personal level.

I will witness the Games through my unique perspective as an Uyghur-American, but also as the daughter of Dr. Gulshan Abbas, a Uyghur retired doctor and peaceful public servant who spent decades caring for the members of her community until she suddenly disappeared from her home in Urumqi in 2018.

Since the day she vanished, my mother has been detained by the Chinese government in one of what it calls its “re-education camps.” But the world has come to recognize them as 21st century concentration camps.

The author holding a photo of her mother, Gulshan Abbas, a doctor being held in a Chinese prison for being Uyghur.

We have not heard my mother’s voice since 2018, and despite my family’s pleas for even a simple update on her situation, we have received little to no information from the Chinese government. We do not even have proof that she is still alive. It is only hope and my fervent wishes that she will one day meet her three-year-old granddaughter that keeps me moving forward with the fight to see her freed.

My mother is not in prison because she is a criminal. She is in prison for one simple fact: The Chinese Communist Party can’t see past her ethnicity. She is in prison for the crime of being Uyghur.

The Biden Administration showed moral leadership by refusing to send official representation to the Beijing Olympics and encouraging other countries to join the diplomatic boycott in protest of China’s human rights abuses. But the administration can and must do more to stand up for individual Uyghurs like my mother, who sit behind bars for no reason other than their ethnicity or association with family in the United States.

The Chinese government may dismiss the accusation that it is carrying out genocide against my people and disregard international calls to close the camps and free all those detained Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities. But when we know the names and stories of unjustly imprisoned individuals, the perpetrators should at the very least face intense pressure from the U.S. to release those individuals, especially the family members of the American citizens.

It’s a relatively small act for the leader of the free world to say the name Gulshan Abbas. It could change the course of my mother’s life.

Last September, in his remarks on National Grandparents Day, President Biden said, “There is no greater joy than spending time with our grandchildren; they are the love of our lives and the life of our love.” When I think about the fact that my mother was robbed from the chance to hold my daughter, I can barely breathe for the ache in my chest. Still, I cling to the words that my mother taught me: “Hope brings miracles.”

I will never give up hope that I will see my mother again and she will finally meet her granddaughter. Nor will I give up hope that President Biden will be moved to use his power and influence to do more to help free my mother and end this human suffering.

Perhaps when the President sees images from the Beijing Olympics, or perhaps as he holds a beloved grandchild close, he will remember the story of Dr. Gulshan Abbas and think of her clinging to hope and a belief in miracles, even from within the walls of her prison cell. And then perhaps he will find a way to make a miracle happen for her.

Ziba Murat is the daughter of Dr. Gulshan Abbas. Follow her on Twitter @ziba116.

Does Money Prevent Being Cancelled?

Sometimes people really say what is on their mind and yet no matter how detestable their words, they are given a free pass.
One case in point are the words of Chamath Palihapitiya delivered in a podcast in January 2022:

“Let’s be honest, nobody cares about what’s happening to the Uyghurs,” Palihapitiya said. “You bring it up because you really care, and I think that’s nice that you care. The rest of us don’t care.”

As a minority owner in an NBA team and billionaire, he has little to worry about. Although the NBA team distanced itself from his statement, he has suffered no real consequence for his callous disregard for the suffering of the Uyghur people or for thinking genocide is acceptable. Forced organ harvesting and concentration camps have become a new normal in his mind.

In Wisconsin Democrats Return Money From Tech Billionaire Under Fire for Uyghur Comments, we learn that he is a Democratic Party mega-donor, but the Wisconsin Democratic party decided to send their $10,000 donation from him to an Uyghur support group. Maybe this should be a trend – how many other Democratic Party recipients of his money are willing to either return it to him or repurpose the donation to help the Uyghur community?

For Freedom

CFU: CFU Proud to Collaborate on CAIR Global Hilton Boycott

CFU Press Release
For Immediate Release
September 17, 2021 5:00 p.m. EST
Contact: Julie Millsap julie@campaignforuyghurs.org
www.campaignforuyghurs.org

Yesterday, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) launched its global Hilton Hotel boycott campaign with a press conference in Washington D.C. Campaign For Uyghurs (CFU) has been honored to be part of this important initiative together with the World Uyghur Congress, Uyghur Human Rights Project and more than 40 Coalition Partners. Furthermore, CFU applauds CAIR for spotlighting the atrocious actions of Hilton to build a hotel on the site of a demolished Uyghur mosque in East Turkistan.

Speaking at the press conference, Mr. Nihad Awad, the Executive Director of CAIR, remarked that “We have given Hilton Hotel more than 4 months to rethink, to reconsider…we negotiated with them indirectly to no avail. We gave them until yesterday to pull out from this project because they are complicit in genocide, and they decided to put profit over values.”

Hilton has carried on with the project, deliberately ignoring the travesty of the assaults on Islam in East Turkistan and the genocide of the Uyghur people. This blatant disrespect for the Muslim faith is in line with other alarming developments. Nearly all aspects of Islam are outlawed. Mosques, when not destroyed, are being turned into night-clubs and pig sties. Uyghur women are forced to marry Han Chinese men out of fear of being detained and labelled “extremist” if they refuse. Most horrific of all, they are facing mass rape, forced abortions, and forced sterilizations. All of these policies are part of a coordinated effort to wage war against the faith of the Uyghur people. The reality is that this is an attack on religious tolerance and religious freedoms globally, not just in East Turkistan.

CFU Executive Director Rushan Abbas said, “Our faith is not an obstacle to be bulldozed! The Uyghurs are not an obstacle to be erased! Profiting off of this genocide is in opposition to the values of humanity! The conscience of the world is at test with this genocide and Hilton is failing it! Today we are calling for a boycott of Hilton for this shameful and bare opportunism, and we demand that companies do the bare minimum: refuse to make money off of the genocide of an entire people group.”

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ALL4MOM.org: Take Action

Help Free Gulshan Abbas and take action!

Freedom’s Herald Interview with Shadman Wayit aka Uyghur Man

Freedom’s Herald interview with Shadman Wayit discussing his background, why he became Uyghur Man and how he is being censored by social media.

uyghurman.net

Uyghur News (Wednesday – Tuesday, July 07 – 13, 2021)

For more new and complete information, please visit https://uyghurinfo.org. Thank you!

US Department of State: 2021 Trafficking in Persons Report – Forced Labor in China’s Xinjiang Region

Forced Labor in China’s Xinjiang Region

Over the last four years, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has carried out a mass detention and political indoctrination campaign against Uyghurs, who are predominantly Muslim, and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (Xinjiang), a large region in western China. The courageous voices of survivors, their family members abroad, researchers, and international advocacy groups have thoroughly documented the PRC’s discriminatory use of surveillance technologies and trumped-up administrative and criminal charges to abduct and detain more than one million Muslims, including Uyghurs, ethnic Hui, ethnic Kazakhs, ethnic Kyrgyz, ethnic Tajiks, and ethnic Uzbeks, in as many as 1,200 state-run internment camps throughout Xinjiang. Detention in these camps is intended to erase ethnic and religious identities under the pretext of “vocational training.” Forced labor is a central tactic used for this repression.

In Xinjiang, the government is the trafficker. Authorities use threats of physical violence, forcible drug intake, physical and sexual abuse, and torture to force detainees to work in adjacent or off-site factories or worksites producing garments, footwear, carpets, yarn, food products, holiday decorations, building materials, extractives, materials for solar power equipment and other renewable energy components, consumer electronics, bedding, hair products, cleaning supplies, personal protective equipment, face masks, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and other goods—and these goods are finding their way into businesses and homes around the world.

International outcry has grown since these abuses were first made public. The PRC initially denied all allegations, dismissing them as international “interference” in its domestic affairs. Confronted, however, with eyewitness testimony and thoroughly researched reporting from multiple sources, the PRC eventually admitted the existence of the camps. PRC officials then defended the facilities as necessary measures to counter “terrorism,” while also claiming that many of them had already been closed. In reality, they had grown in number and in size, with hundreds of thousands of victims “graduating” and being sent to larger and more technologically advanced prisons under false terrorism-related charges. The government also began transferring many thousands of camp detainees elsewhere in Xinjiang and to other provinces throughout the country under the guise of a “poverty alleviation” program in which companies and local governments received subsidies for forcing them to labor in manufacturing.

With so many disappeared into and abused within this system, entire communities in Xinjiang—communities with rich histories and immeasurable cultural significance—have become ghost towns. Those who have managed to avoid detention are still at risk of state-sponsored forced labor and other abuses. The PRC government’s Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (Bingtuan), an economic and paramilitary organization with administrative control over several areas in the region comprising nearly three million personnel, forces members of prison populations and local communities alike to work in hazardous mining, construction, manufacturing, food processing, and—for many thousands of Uyghur adults and children—cotton harvesting. These products and raw materials are injected into international supply chains, spreading the PRC’s forced labor complicity around the globe.

The international community has taken tough action to promote accountability for the PRC’s actions and strengthen market defenses against the import of these goods. For example, in the United States, the Departments of State, the Treasury, Commerce, and Homeland Security released the Xinjiang Supply Chain Business Advisory to alert businesses and other entities to the reputational, economic, and legal risks of involvement with entities in or linked to Xinjiang. In addition, since 2019 the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection has issued 10 Withhold Release Orders against goods and companies connected to forced labor in Xinjiang to block their entry into the United States. Likewise, many companies have taken a stand against the use of forced labor in China by cutting ties with suppliers in Xinjiang or those connected to the PRC’s campaign of repression—at times earning them heavy consumer and state-run media backlash within the Chinese domestic market.

Governments should protect and serve their citizens—not terrorize and subjugate them for profit. Around the world, governments, companies, and consumers committed to eliminating human trafficking from global supply chains can all play a role in demanding an end to the use of forced labor in Xinjiang and beyond.

2021 Trafficking in Persons Report, page 47

https://www.state.gov/reports/2021-trafficking-in-persons-report/

Uyghur News (Friday – Tuesday, July 02 – 06, 2021)

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Uyghur News (Tuesday – Wednesday, June 22 – 30, 2021)

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Uyghur News (Tuesday – Monday, June 15 – 21, 2021)

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