Chinese Regime Tightens Control of Uyghurs

March 31, 2009 8:27 am Last Updated: March 31, 2009 8:27 am

The World Uyghur Congress reported on March 30 that the Chinese regime has tighten its grip on Uyghurs in the Hetian area in Xinjiang Autonomous Region in an effort to prevent protest activities from occurring during the 60th anniversary of the so-called “peaceful liberation of Xinjiang.”

Close to one million Uyghurs will be forced to undergo security checks. Those who have refused to cooperate with the authorities have been beaten. Several religious schools have been forced to close down.

Chinese authorities started the operation on March 20 to comb through 107 districts, 78 towns and counties, and 219 villages in the Hetian area where there is a huge concentration of Uyghurs, checking over one million Uyghurs.

Mr. Dilshat Rishit, spokesperson for World Uyghur Congress cited messages passed out of Xinjiang by Uyghurs in Hetian that said police and National Security officers usually entered the homes of Uyghurs at night for the security checks, those who refused to let the officers in are beaten up.

Chinese Authorities also closed seven religious schools and arrested 39 people in the Hetian area on grounds of cracking down on an “illegal religion.” Witnesses said armed personnel beat those arrested with guns.

Mr. Dilshat Rishit condemned the operation for severely interfering with local Uyghurs’ normal daily life and making them live in terror and stress.

The World Uyghur Congress estimates that more Uyghurs will be arrested in this operation of eradication.

On behalf of the World Uyghur Congress, Mr. Dilshat Rishit condemned the Chinese regime for taking “extreme security” measures in this type of eradication operation. He also criticized that the so called “security” measure could only lead to more violations of laws by law enforcement personnel, and that using violence against local Uyghurs without going through any legal procedure could intensify conflicts in the area.

Read this article in Chinese.