China’s state-run Global Times on Thursday accused the U.S. of “usurping the U.N.’s name” by participating in a virtual U.N. event on Wednesday designed to encourage the U.N. to act on Beijing’s alleged human rights abuses against Muslim Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in China’s western Xinjiang region.
“The US, the UK, and Germany hosted a virtual UN event regarding China’s Xinjiang on Wednesday [May 12],” the Global Times wrote.
“But the Islamic countries, as members of the UN, have not endorsed the event. Only Turkey, which has occasionally attempted to meddle with Xinjiang affairs, was mentioned in some media reports about the event,” according to the newspaper.
“Around 20 countries participated in the event — far less than the total number of US allies. More importantly, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights did not attend the event,” the Global Times noted.
“This was evidently an event that misappropriated the UN premises,” the newspaper wrote.
People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee, publishes the Global Times.
The growing evidence of human rights violations in #Xinjiang paints a harrowing picture
— UK at the UN (@UKUN_NewYork) May 11, 2021
China’s Mission to the U.N. urged many of the U.N.’s 193 member nations last week not to participate in the May 12 Xinjiang meeting, calling it an “anti-China event.”
“China’s U.N. Ambassador Zhang Jun sent text messages to the 15 Western co-sponsors of the meeting expressing shock at their support, urging them to ‘think twice’ and withdraw it,” according to Reuters.
Zhang warned that if the co-sponsors failed to withdraw their support from the meeting, it would be “harmful to our relationship and cooperation.”
A growing number of human rights organizations and foreign governments have accused the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) of forcefully detaining 1-3 million Muslim Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and Kyrgyz people in state-run concentration camps in Xinjiang since at least 2017. The human rights groups and mainly Western governments also allege that Xinjiangs’s CCP-run camps facilitate slave labor so the region’s ethnic minorities may cheaply produce Chinese goods, such as cotton, exported worldwide. The entities have also accused the CCP of committing genocide against Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in Xinjiang by forcing the labor camps’ female detainees to receive birth control, such as intrauterine devices (IUDs), or undergo sterilizations or abortions.
“In Xinjiang, people are being tortured; women are being forcibly sterilized,” U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said at Wednesday’s U.N. meeting.
“The evidence, from a growing number of credible sources — including satellite imagery, survivor testimony, and publicly available Chinese Government documents — is of grave concern,” Barbara Woodward, the U.K.’s permanent representative to the U.N., said at Tuesday’s meeting. Woodward previously served as U.K. ambassador to China.
“The evidence points to a program of repression of specific ethnic groups. Expressions of religion have been criminalized and Uyghur language and culture are discriminated against systematically and at scale,” she said.