Fri, 02 Jun 2023

Geneva [Switzerland], May 15 (ANI): Ahead of Michelle Bachelet's visit, the UN's high commissioner for human rights in China's Xinjiang, about 20 Uyghurs, Tibetans and international human rights groups protested outside the United Nations compound in Geneva.

They called on the UN human rights chief on Friday to release the report on abuses in Xinjiang and to consult internment camps survivors and other Chinese who are living in exile, reported Radio Free Asia (RFA).

The latest of numerous rallies by Uyghurs, Tibetans came a day after the release on Thursday of a suspected police list with the names of more than 10,000 allegedly detained Uyghurs from one county in Xinjiang.

For Uyghurs living abroad, the release on Thursday of a suspected police list with the names of more than 10,000 allegedly detained Uyghurs from Xinjiang's Kashgar Kona Sheher (Shufu) county underscores the importance of Bachelet's upcoming visit.

The list, which also contains birthdates, ethnicities, ID numbers, addresses, sentence lengths and prison locations of the Uyghurs, was obtained by authorities in Turkey, reported French-based media.

Nursiman Abdureshid on Friday told RFA that she discovered that her brother, Mamateli Abdureshid, had been sentenced to nearly 16 years in prison in Xinjiang from information on the leaked list.

Nursiman, who is from Saybagh village in Kashgar Kona Sheher's Shor township, now lives in Turkey with her family. She is also the sister of an RFA reporter.

Nursiman said she lost contact with Mamateli in June 2017, the year that China stepped up its crackdown on Uyghurs.

"I learned about the imprisonment of my brother in Aksu (in Chinese, Akesu) from this list," she said. "The reason for his sentencing, the length of the sentence, his home address and ID are listed on it."Mamateli was charged with "disrupting social stability" and "potential to join terrorist activities," the same reasons the Chinese Embassy in Ankara gave her in 2020, Nursiman said.

"I asked for the reason for his sentence, whether there was a trial, and where he was imprisoned, but got no response," she said.

More than 100 people on the list are from the same township, said Nursiman, who identified seven people she knew.

"The genocide has been ongoing for the last five years," she said. "The UN has failed to hold China accountable in spite of the recognition of the Uyghur genocide by the US-led Western democracies, preponderance of evidence of genocide, testimonies of camp survivors and many lists of Uyghurs being mass incarcerated."Bachelet, a former Chilean president, is expected to visit the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region among other places in China this month, though the dates have yet to be disclosed.

During the protest, Uyghur groups sought to deliver a letter to the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR), specifying their demands for a credible visit, said World Uyghur Congress (WUC), reported RFA.

"Today, we haven't come before the UN to beg High Commissioner Michelle Bachelet," said WUC president Dolkun Isa. "We have come here to hold her accountable. We have come here to remind her of her solemn duty. She has the inescapable duty to stop China's genocide against Uyghurs."China is accused of having incarcerated 1.8 million Uyghurs in mass detention camps. The United States and the legislatures of several Western countries have found that China's mistreatment of the Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in Xinjiang constitute genocide and crimes against humanity.

China angrily rejects all such claims as politically motivated attacks on its security and development policies in the vast western region.

Beijing has called for a "friendly" visit by the UN rights official, the kind that rights experts fear would help China whitewash the situation, reported RFA. (ANI)

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