China's Xinjiang region legalizes Muslim internment camps

Government officials and party members are ordered to firmly believe in Marxism-Leninism not religion

Government officials and party members are ordered to firmly believe in Marxism-Leninism not religion

Chinese authorities have launched a campaign against halal products to stop Islam penetrating secular life and fueling "extremism" in the northwestern region of Xinjiang, where Muslim indigenous ethnic groups of Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, and Hui (Dungans) are facing religious restrictions.

Members of Uighur, Kazakh and other Muslim minorities who live overseas say they have not been able to contact relatives in China, while authorities are placing children separated from their detained or exiled parents into dozens of state-run orphanages across Xinjiang.

A US Congressional panel is accusing Beijing of crimes against humanity for detaining more than one million Uighur Muslims.

James Leibold, a China specialist at La Trobe University, said global condemnation has "embarrassed" Beijing, but authorities had no intention of heeding calls to allow independent human rights monitors into the autonomous region to assess the situation, instead moving detainees in secret.

The 300-page report describes a "downward trajectory" on human rights since Xi took power in 2012.

This has led US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and, more recently, US Vice-President Mike Pence to denounce China's treatment of Uighurs.

Chinese authorities have denied that the internment camps exist but say petty criminals are sent to "employment training centers".

Published Oct. 10, the report was prepared and released by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, which is chaired by Sen.

The group proposed legislation on October 10 that would urge Trump to condemn "gross violations" of human rights in the Xinjiang region, where the United Nations estimates that as many as 1 million Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim minorities are being held in arbitrary detention. Marco Rubio, a Republican from Florida, and U.S. Rep. Chris Smith, a Republican of New Jersey.

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China's anti-extremism law first went into effect last April.

The regulations say they are for people "influenced by extremism".

The ruling Communist Party has used the excuse of potential Islamic threats, "extremism" and ethnic riots to crack down on the local population in Xinjiang.

China has also justified its method of "training" religious extremists as "the necessary way to deal with Islamic or religious extremism".

Under the new rules, all officials and police in the region must make a declaration that they are "loyal Communist Party members" and "don't have any religious belief".

It said they were poorly fed, and reports of torture were widespread. "As American policymakers revisit the assumptions that previously informed U.S".

Other areas of concern addressed in the report included the status of women, public health, political prisoners, freedom of expression and workers' rights, among other things.

These efforts "have merit on their own accord, and they are also inextricably linked to vital USA national interests, including regional stability in the Indo-Pacific, the future of young and emerging democracies in our hemisphere, and the strength of our own civic institutions domestically".

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