Reflections on a Wandering Life.....

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Islamic communities in China & Kazakhstan 

A gold dome is seen on the ground after it was removed from a hotel
in Tongxin county. Photo: Nectar Gan

Much concern has been expressed about the detention of Muslims in Xinjiang. The video below is interesting, because it also addresses the treatment of other Muslim communities in China. As I have noted before, the exact number (or even a reliable approximate number) of people detained is not available. So be aware that when you see or hear numbers mentioned, these are guesses. I don't know it it is true that there are over a million people detained. But I would think that it is at least several hundred thousand. But again, nobody knows.

Of course, as I mentioned in a previous post, the number of people detained is secondary to the question of whether they have been detained against their will without due process. Deprivation of liberty without due process is a violation of human rights regardless of what you do to those people once you have them locked up.

Another issue that is of interest to me is the response of surrounding Muslim countries. To my knowledge, the only country that has publicly taken a stand against the mass detentions is Turkey. That's not surprising, because the Uyghurs in Xinjiang Province are a Turkic people. I am thinking we may hear more about the response of other nations in months to come, but for now, it is significant that most Muslim countries support China's actions, or at least do not feel compelled to challenge them. It is one of the things I am going to be watching. This video is interesting in that regard, because it begins to explore the effect of the detention on neighboring Kazakhstan. More about that in a later post.

One further note about the video: The narration is a bit spotty. For example, they interview a Uyghur guy talking about a camp in a place called, "Kuldzha," without giving you any idea where that is. The nearest I can tell, this is referring to what is now called Yining, in northwest Xinjiang Province.


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