Updated July 25th, 2020 at 11:08 IST

'Millions in camps, abortions, genocide': EU asks UN to probe China's Xinjiang atrocities

EU's MEPs demanded a detailed UN-led investigation into the human rights abuses against Uighurs in China's Xinjiang calling it a crime proportional to genocide.

| Image:self

Members of Parliament with the European Union (MEPs) led calls for the European Union (EU) to demand a detailed United Nations-led investigation into the alleged human rights abuses and conducts against Uighur Muslims in China's Xinjiang province. 

A UN commission likely to be set up to study the alleged crimes committed by the current Xi Jinping government and investigated accordingly. The EU called on member states to consider imposing a Global Human Rights Sanctions Mechanism against Chinese government officials found to be guilty of involvement.

Read | Is QUAD a viable alliance to counter the rising Chinese influence in Asia-Pacific?

This move on the part of the European Union is not only symbolic but also signals a powerful message in Europe as well as the rest of the world about not letting China carry on its abuse of power and crimes against humanity. This comes at a time when China is particularly vulnerable as several countries have actively called out the dragon's malicious acts and intent.

In the letter the MEPs wrote to the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy as well as the Vice-President of the Commission Mr Josep Borrell Fontelles, it was stated that discriminatory laws such as State-ordered birth prevention (one-child policy) and continuous dehumanising treatment of Muslim minorities in Xinjiang are a matter of grave concern to the members and as such the dire human rights situation should be investigated, especially in the case of Xinjiang and Hong Kong, with the implementation of the new Security Law.

Read | Aksai Chin, South China Sea, & other gestrategic interests for China in the 21st century

The letter detailed several atrocities uncovered through investigations and explained that 80,000 Uighurs have been subjected to deportation and forced labour in "special" camps. The suffering of the minorities in Xinjiang included political and religious indoctrination, destruction of holy sites and other places of worship. "Arbitrary arrests", frequent disappearance and torture were all named in the list of crimes committed against 2 million Uighurs currently being held in internment camps. 

The letter mentioned that in a study published by China expert Dr Adrian Zenz, at the end of June 2020, 'A new invasive strategy by the Communist Party to reduce the Muslim population throughout the region was introduced. It dealt with sterilizations, forced abortions and mandatory birth control.'

Drawing on new evidence that has emerged, Dr Zenz was quoted in the letter to have said CPC's government-induced targeted birth prevention, forced abortions, intrauterine injections and sterilizations paired with widespread mass arrests and surveillance programs continue unperturbed. Natural birth rates in the region have dramatically declined in various districts due to the pogrom between 2015-2020.

MEPs noted that the Chinese government's action against minorities cannot be judged as single acts as birth prevention, with the intention to destroy the population among specific ethnoreligious groups is nothing short of genocide. And as such, the actions should be judged according to the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

Read | Japan offers asylum to HK, sets up committee to investigate China's human rights abuses


Image credit: Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China

The letter was shared on Twitter by IPAC (Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China), an international cross-party group of legislators working to reform democracy and its approach in China.

Read | From 'President for life' to 'Xi Dada': How it's all gone downhill for China's Xi Jinping


Published July 25th, 2020 at 11:08 IST