By People’s Daily Commentator
The US signed into law the so-called “Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2020” on June 17, local time.
This so-called Act deliberately denigrates the human rights conditions in China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, viciously attacks the Chinese government’s Xinjiang policy, blatantly violates international law and basic norms governing international relations, and grossly interferes in China’s internal affairs. The Chinese government and people express strong indignation and firm opposition to this.
It must be pointed out that the essence of Xinjiang-related issues is not about human rights, ethnicity, or religion hyped by the US, but about combating terrorism and de-radicalization.
Since the 1990s, the “three forces”, namely separatists, religious extremists and terrorists, have executed thousands of violent terrorist attacks in Xinjiang, inflicting heavy casualties and property losses and trampling on all the rights of local people.
In light of such conditions, the Chinese government has taken a series of measures to combat these activities and prevent their re-occurrence, in an approach of addressing both the symptoms and root causes of the problem. The measures taken are in compliance with Chinese laws. They are also China’s concrete steps in implementing the international counter-terrorism and de-radicalization initiatives, including the United Nations (UN) Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and the Plan of Action to Prevent Violent Extremism.
These efforts have proven to be efficient. Over the past three years and more, there has not been a single violent terrorist case in Xinjiang. The rights to life, health and development and other rights of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjing are protected. The international community shares the view that China has actively contributed to the international cause of human rights and counter-terrorism.
The so-called Act disregards facts and distorts truth. Facts speak louder than words. Today, People of different ethnic groups and religious beliefs in Xinjiang live together as equals, enjoy unity and harmony, and lead a peaceful and stable life. That’s the what’s needed in the autonomous region.
In 2019, Xinjiang received over 200 million tourists, and its economic growth reached 6.2 percent. This year, it will eliminate absolute poverty.
Uyghur population in Xinjiang has grown to 11.65 million or 46.8 percent of the total. There are over 24,000 mosques in Xinjiang, which means there is a mosque for every 530 Muslims on average. As one of the 56 ethnic groups of China, the Uyghur people are entitled to all the rights and freedom under the Constitution.
The international community holds a fair opinion on Xinjiang-related issues.
At the 43rd session of the UN Human Rights Council, representatives of multiple countries praised China for its achievements in counter-terrorism and de-radicalization, speaking highly of China’s openness and transparency. They also commended China for inviting over 1,000 diplomats officials of international organizations, journalists, and religious figures to visit the autonomous region, as well as China’s invitations to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to visit Xinjiang.
In July 2019, ambassadors of over 50 countries to the UN Office at Geneva co-signed a letter to the president of the UN Human Rights Council and the High Commissioner for Human Rights, applauding China’s respect to and protection of human rights in its counter-terrorism and de-radicalization efforts. In October, at the Third Committee session of the 74th UN General Assembly, more than 60 countries commended in their statements the tremendous human rights progress achieved in Xinjiang and opposed the interference in other countries’ internal affairs under the pretext of human rights.
Ezzat Saad, director of the Egyptian Council for Foreign Affairs who has been to Xinjiang, said frankly that the US using the so-called “human rights issues” to meddle in China’s internal affairs is “blackmail.”
Isabelle Carvalho, an expert at the Brazil-China Chamber of Commerce and Industry, believes that the true intention of the US is to maintain its global hegemony.
The so-called Act seeks to stigmatize Xinjiang’s measures against terrorism, separatism and radicalization, and applies double standards on counter-terrorism.
As is known to all, the US has started warfare in Islamic countries such as Iraq and Syria under the pretext of counter-terrorism, killing and injuring millions of innocent people. It also identified terrorism with particular countries, regions and ethnic groups, and issued a Muslim ban for Muslim-majority countries.
A US survey shows that 75 percent of adult Muslims in the US believed that discrimination against Muslims was pervasive in the country, while 69 percent of the general public held the same view. Half of Muslims felt that it had become more and more difficult to be a Muslim in the US in recent years.
It is obvious to all that the US should have seriously reflected on the bad human rights conditions on its own territory. Some US politicians, out of their own political interests, have staged various political farces, which once again proved that they are not at all the human rights defenders as they have proclaimed. They only make a fool of themselves, who disregard facts, make up lies, disdain justice and have brazen motives.
Xinjiang affairs are purely China’s internal affairs that allow no foreign interference. China demand the US side to correct its mistakes at once, stop using this Xinjiang-related Act to harm China’s interests and interfere in China’s internal affairs. The Chinese government and people are resolute in safeguarding China’s sovereignty, security and development interests.
The US attempt to sow discord among Chinese ethnic groups, undermine prosperity and stability in Xinjiang, and contain China’s growth under the pretext of Xinjiang-related issues will never succeed.