هل يعمل الاتحاد الدولي لعلماء المسلمين من أجل الأمة ؟


الناشط الإيغوري عبدالغني ثابت:

هل هذه المنظمة (الاتحاد الدولي لعلماء المسلمين) تعمل فعلا من أجل الأمة الإسلامية؟

إن كانت تعمل إذا كيف ذلك؟ نحن الأويغور المسلمون في تركستان الشرقية نعاني من النظام الصيني منذ 68 عاما.
أنا شخصيا كتبت عدة مرات .لهذه المنظمة عن محنتنا، لكنني لم أتلق أي رد

هل هؤلاء العلماء يعيشون في هذا العالم أم في كوكب آخر؟

منذ ما يقرب من عامين تغطي وسائل الإعلام الدولية ما يجري في معسكرات الاعتقال الصينية في تركستان الشرقية.

أعلنت الصين بالفعل الحرب ضد الإسلام وأعلنت الإسلام أنه “معد” ومرض نفسي وعقلي في جميع أنحاء المنطقة.

الناشط الإيغوري عبدالغني ثابت

لماذا هؤلاء العلماء المسلمين هادئين؟ ما هي مسؤوليتهم؟

A Muslim Divide in China


Uyghur Muslims face stricter controls on religion than Hui Muslims.

By: Rukiye Turdush 

File photo of Muslim Uyghurs praying at the Jame Mosque during Ramadan in Hotan in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region

China says its laws provide equal religious freedom for Uyghurs and the country’s other main Muslim group, the Hui, but Uyghurs face stricter controls on religious education and worship and how they dress because of Islam’s links to their political identity, analysts say.

Islam flourishes in China’s Ningxia and Gansu provinces, home to many of the country’s 10 million Hui Muslims, where mosque-based schools offer religious teachings to adults and children.

Hui Muslims in other parts of China as well are also allowed to run religious schools.

But in the Xinjiang region in China’s far west, where the mostly Muslim, Turkic-speaking Uyghurs form an ethnic group 9 million strong, government policies bar women and anyone under age 18 from attending mosques.

Uyghur parents are forbidden to teach religion to their children at home, and private religious education is subject to harsh crackdowns.

Many Uyghurs believe China is practicing a double standard in its religious policy toward Uyghur and Hui Muslims.

Although the laws on the books were the same, in practice, policies vary for both groups, said Dru Gladney, an anthropologist at Pomona College in California.

“Chinese laws about religious freedom are very clear. But like any other good Chinese law, there is uneven enforcement,” he said.

“Xinjiang has strict religious freedom because the political situation of the region is much different than other regions.”

But officials maintain Uyghurs are not getting the short end of the stick.

The head of the government-sanctioned Islamic Association of Urumqi, in the Xinjiang capital, said this month that China allows equal religious freedom for Uyghurs and Hui Muslims.

“There is no difference in religious policy,” Keram told RFA’s Uyghur Service.

“Uyghurs enjoy the same religious freedoms as Hui Muslims do,” he said.

But he refused to comment on crackdowns on Uyghurs’ religious freedom, including harsh sentences for unauthorized Islamic study and police raids on illegal schools in the region.

Crackdowns and police raids

Six teenaged Uyghur boys who were arrested for studying the Quran on their own after school are now serving sentences of 8 to 14 years in jail, a Uyghur farmer in the area who wished to remain anonymous told RFA this month.

The boys, who were between the ages of 14 and 17 at the time, had been arrested in April 2010 in Hotan’s Keriye county, and are now being held in jails in Aksu and Yarkand far from their hometowns, he said.

In May this year, an 11-year-old Uyghur boy died under suspicious circumstances in police custody after being detained when police raided his teacher’s home in Korla prefecture where he had been studying the Koran with two other boys when police took him away.

In a separate incident weeks later, a dozen children in Hotan prefecture suffered burns after police using teargas and stormed a religious school where some 50 children were studying under “illegal preachers.”

Aside from restrictions on Islamic education and worship, Uyghurs are also subject to restrictions on traditional Islamic dress.

Chinese officials have denied there were such restrictions, which in theory are prohibited by laws protecting religious freedom.

Earlier this month, a Uyghur member of the Xinjiang delegation to the ruling Chinese Communist Party’s 18th congress in Beijing, Kurex Kanjir, said there is “absolutely no ban” on Uyghurs wearing traditional Islamic dress, according to the Hong-Kong based South China Morning Post.

Political identity

Hui Muslims, on the other hand, are much freer to practice Islam, although Hui Muslims in Ningxia suffered persecution during the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s and ‘70s.

Hui Muslims do not suffer the same level of repression as faced by Uyghurs because they have been much more assimilated into Chinese culture, says Uyghur writer Ghulam Osman.

“Hui Muslims are Chinese Muslims, but Uyghurs are not. Uyghurs are of a different race than the Chinese.”

“Hui Muslims have never been a nation-state; they always lived together with the Chinese, because they belong to the same ethnic group as the Chinese,” he said.

The Hui, whose forefathers hundreds of years ago were traders from Central Asia or other places who practiced Islam, live throughout China and, unlike the Uyghurs, many of them speak Chinese as their mother tongue.

The Hui are counted as one of China’s 55 distinct ethnic minorities, but are unique in that they are the only group to be defined solely on the basis of their religion, rather than language or genealogical differences. By definition, China’s Hui minority includes all historically Muslim communities in the country who are not members of other ethnic groups.

“Uyghurs are different; they had their own land and were invaded by China,” Ghulam Osman said, referring to Xinjiang’s past before it came under Chinese control following two short-lived East Turkestan Republics in the 1930s and 1940s.

China, fearing a separatist movement in Xinjiang, represses Uyghurs’ religious freedom because Islam is significant in the survival of their identity, he said.

But if China is worried about an independence movement blossoming among Uyghurs, such a movement would be more likely to be spurred in reaction to repressive religious policies than religion on its own, Gladney said.

“All the Uyghur movements against the Chinese government were caused by frustration that resulted from the heavy-handed repression of the Chinese government in the region, not by radical religious forces,” Gladney said.

But the political role of Islam in allowing Uyghurs to maintain an identity separate from the rest of China should not be underestimated, Ghulam Osman said.

“It is true that all political movements of Uyghurs are caused by the heavy handed policy of China and not by radical religious forces.”

“However, this does not mean religion does not play a significant role in Uyghur survival and Uyghur political movements,” he said.

“Islam and the Uyghur language are deeply embedded in Uyghur identity. They strengthen our racial and historical differences with Han Chinese.”

Reported by Rukiye Turdush for RFA’s Uyghur Service. Translated by Mamatjan Juma. Written in English by Rachel Vandenbrink.
From the Source

Why China Is Not Worried About Offending Muslim Allies


By: Rukiye Turdush 

Turkey’s Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak and China’s National Energy Administration Chairman Nur Bekri signed a nuclear energy agreement between the two countries, Beijing, September 2016.

The Chinese government released a New Silk Road project action plan in 2015 to facilitate the achievement of its global ambition. The project aimed to materialize China’s dream of expansion through Central Asia to Europe.

China colonized East Turkistan (which the Chinese government also calls the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region) in 1949. The region is located at the major gateway to this “New Silk Road” project and is mainly populated by Turkic-speaking ethnic Uyghurs and Kazakhs.

To promote the success of the “New Silk Road” project and make it easier to gain access to Muslim countries, China should respect the religious identity of Uyghurs and implement fair policy in the colonized land. Uyghurs and Kazakhs share the religion of the Central Asian nation, Turkey, Pakistan, Indonesia, Malaysia and many other countries that play integral roles in the project. However, China has harshly implemented a destruction policy in the region, locking up several million Muslims in so-called re-education camps that are no different from Nazi-style concentration camps.

According to eye witnesses and countless of media reports, belief in Islam, praying to God, eating halal food, practicing Islamic funeral ceremonies and refusing to marry Han Chinese have all been banned. Moreover, Chinese officials have called Islam a mental disease. The Han-centric nation-building manifestation of China has aggressively moved to abolish Islam in the region. This should offend all Islamic nations. Surprisingly, it does not offend them at all.

Why doesn’t China have to worry about offending its Muslim allies? The reasons could vary. For one, China has mastered its cheating and bullying strategy. For example, through economic war, China’s cheating has cost the United States alone two million jobs since it became a member of the World Trade Organization. In addition, the bullying of Taiwan and building of an artificial island in the South China Sea have manifested the Thick Black Theory (Hou Hei Xue) of China.

After getting away with all of this, China believed that it could also get away with offending its Muslim allies. Alternatively, it may have believed that such a risk was worth taking since East Turkistan has significant strategic importance to China.

The purpose of the “New Silk Road” or “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) is to use China’s economic power and capital export as leverage to shape its main interest in geostrategic targets and to export the dominance of Han Chinese nationalism. China believes that it cannot fulfill these imperialistic goals without achieving total Han nationalist dominance in East Turkistan. Based on this belief, China has banned religion and Uyghur ethnic identity in East Turkistan to eliminate spaces that would allow the influence of other worlds.

Secondly, China has effectively manipulated the conflict between the West and Muslim countries, took the position of guardian over the Muslim countries in exchange for their silence regarding the issue. For example, the Turkish government was previously very supportive of East Turkistan. Back in 2009, President Erdogan criticized China and depicted the Urumqi massacre as a “genocide”. China demanded an official apology for that but never received one. In recent years, however, the adversary relationship between Turkey and the US has pushed Turkey further into the strategic circle of China. On numerous occasions, Turkish President Erdogan was quoted as saying, “Only atheist Satan can be silent in the face injustices”. Yet he now chooses to remain silent in the face of the tremendous injustices the Uyghurs are experiencing.

Furthermore, the financial crisis, the weakening of Western democratic ideology and rise of illiberal democracy in the West have given the green light to China’s genocidal policy against the Uyghurs. In fact, China tested the water before implementing the destruction of the religion and identity of Muslims in the region. Chinese state media produced vast amounts of propaganda material in several languages and circulated them around the world to further their agenda. They tried to illustrate that state oppression was a consequence of separatism and religious extremism or terrorism despite the fact that there was little evidence of organized terrorism, separatism or religious extremism.

Detainees listening to speeches in a re-education camp in Lop County, April, 2017
In 2014, China was successful at convincing Egypt to deport thousands of Uyghur students in exchange for a $40 billion trade deal. Furthermore, China arrested hundreds of ethnic Kazakhs in the region in the absence of any pending charges just to see the reaction of the Kazakh government. China also succeeded in getting the Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister, Cavus Ogli, to promise not to allow the Turkish media to publish items on Uyghur human rights. The reactions of these Muslim countries eased China’s worries that it would offend them. As a result, China enhanced its genocidal policy in the region.

China’s multistage and political strategy based on Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War” states: “befriend them to get their guard down, then attack their weakest point.” Chinese political strategies have never been based on transparency and honesty. If China is buying these Muslim countries trust to open their door for OBOR project and making them ignore religious and moral obligations, then soon, there will be a day that China can attack their weakest point.

“Rukiye Turdush is an independent human rights activist and writer based in Toronto.”


Deal Proposal (Deal With Uyghurs)



As the influence of multinational corporations over public policy continues unabated, the key challenge for those campaigning for social and environmental justice is how to redistribute political power back into the hands of ordinary people.

It was a “Suitable Introduction” I‘ve borrowed it from this oldarticle that I recommend to take a look on it & then let us agree.

We have to agree first:

In the beginning, before talking about our campaign’s idea, we should be agreed on a number of points:

1- The corporations are entities that doesn’t know except a “profit” language, so they seek always to profit, seek to creating its resources & getting its tools.

2- The corporations have a power that over than the governments,
–  Where they who are put the terms of the agreements which they hold them & who are oblige the governments to achieve them.
– They (corporations) who are determine the size of investments that they can do in the countries & so the proportion of profits of its governments
– They who are involved in the enactment of laws which the governments put it for their countries.
– They who are determine the relationships between the countries too.

3- So, We can say that the corporations have a power to put pressure on the governments.

4- This point (4) would be about China & the Reasons for its occupation to East Turkestan:
Of course there are economic reasons; this is often the reason for most of the occupations, then for looting and plundering the wealth of the countries & then suppressing the people to surrender and subjecting them to this occupation, and deprive them of all means of resistance that they can use.

We know that Turkestan has a Muslims people & China as we see is using “the religious persecution” as a mean to creating a justification to can continuing the practice its crimes against Turkistan people “Uighurs” from “ killing, massacres, arrest, torture & trying to demolition the religious identity .. etc.” under the pretext of fighting the terrorism who are represent a threat to state security or fearing from the intolerance or so on ..

China want to grab the land & else want the people wouldn’t care about their land more then they try to save their life & their religious identity.

5- Relationship between China & MNCs:
If we notice that Chine is a searcher for resources of wealth, lands, and productions, whatever any resource help it to growth its economic & creating new markets, then the government call& use the MNCs to begin to extracting, producing and marketing those resources “Investments” through the signing of agreements as we know .

WE ARE HERE:
And because Chine has become the Dragon which threatens the life, stability and security of  Asia religion & the peoples there for its constant searching for sources of wealth and productive resources,

And because “humanity and the preservation of mankind” has become linked to Interests,  Investments, Agreements , Funds & Money,


And because the governments has become doesn’t care about the life of the people , but they has become fight & kill the people for stealing  more of their properties for make more investments ..

We have decided to deal directly with those corporations without putting China’s government as an intermediary between us.
We deserve more than them…  isn’t that?  We are their real customers, who are buying their goods & products and we are the cause of their profit.

We are only looking forward for our right to life with all meaning of life as it should be, Of Worship – marriage – procreation – travel and moving – Study – Stability & Before all this we ask the security & safety.


Why China’s Ganging up against Uyghur Muslims is a threat for the world?


By: Gulnaz Uighur
Follow at: @iamgul8
There are chances that you have not heard about Uyghurs or about our connection with China. So before writing about the threat, here is an introduction to our community. Uyghurs are ethnically Turkic people living in the areas of Central Asia. We practice a moderate form of Islam and our land is called East Turkestan. Though, in 1949 China occupied it and named it as Xinjiang( means new territory). Since then we Uyghurs have been subjected to unspeakable atrocities by the communist regime. Our land is rich in natural resources which became the reason behind its occupation. Our culture and values are entirely different from Chinese ideology. Due to this, we have been imprisoned in our own homes.

The Heights of oppression in China

Uyghurs are not allowed to Practice Islam. Thousands of mosques have been destroyed in the name of development. There have been notices to praise Xi Jinping before Allah, these posters are pasted in every corner of Xinjiang (read East Turkestan). We are not allowed to fast during the month of Ramadan. Beards are banned for Uyghur men. Children below 18 yrs are not allowed to visit pray,visit mosques or learn Islam. If a parent is caught teaching Quran to their kids, they get punished. 

Regular raids are conducted in Uyghur houses without even a warrant. Our language is not taught in schools, there are no job vacancies for us. Child labor is prevalent (I myself have been a victim). Uyghurs are not allowed to leave China, our passports are kept with the authorities. So if someone wants to go abroad, then we first need to visit the police station. Therefore our trip to abroad can easily end in torture,humiliation or imprisonment( authorities in China don’t need a reason to arrest Uyghurs). There are many such things happening with us right now. While you take a sound sleep at your well equipped apartments, our homes are searched and our beloveds, taken away. Most of the time we never hear about their fate, whether they live or die. We never know! 

On top of it all, if some of us escaped or got lucky to legally leave the country. Some Uyghurs who travel for education or are living in asylum are somehow trying to get their life together. But Xi Jinping is not able to see that either, according to him domination is the key to prosperity. 

From Economy to Expansion

Under Xi Jinping’s regime, the Uyghur conflict has been set on fire. China is now Ganging up with other countries against Uyghurs. The recent example is of Turkey’s declaration of blocking Anti-China media came just after signing security deals with the country. Turkey has been a major supporter of Uyghurs and this is a major setback. Although, its not the first time that Xi Jinpinghas used economic ties to restrict the freedom of our community. Recently, Egypt also detained dozens of Uyghur students and arrested hundreds of Uyghurs on the behest of China. This happened despite all of them living legally in Egypt.(Here is a petition for you to support). 
But how the suppression of Uyghurs is a threat for the world? 

If one closely studies the reason and pattern of persecution by China, then one can easily distinguish its motive of using economic tools as a compliment to its expansion policies. By looking at the examples of Turkey, Egypt, Thailand, Pakistan and even Italy( recently Dolkun Isawas not allowed to speak at a conference in Italian senate and was detained instead) etc. We find that just after signing some deals , China was able to dictate their policies about Uyghurs. Earlier these countries didn’t have a problem with us but suddenly they find it difficult to protect Human Rights. There are Uyghurs who were living from past 10 years but today they are forced to flea and live in fear. 

The world knows that Human rights have no place in China itself. And if China continues to strengthen its ties with other countries through projects economic projects. Then soon the human rights situation will become horrible even for the native citizens of those countries. China has always been aggressive about its recession policies and will do anything to expand. The wounds of cultural genocide are still fresh in everyone’s mind. The results of steel revolution by Mao have been horrible too. 

Therefore, the world must learn from the Uyghurs despotism and stop China from throttling the Human rights of Uyghurs. Or it won’t take long for Xi Jinping to choke the necks of those who support him now. 

Silent Prayer: The Chinese State’s Siege on Uyghur Ways of Worship


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By


Alice Su

The tomb of the Muslim saint Imam Asim lies in China’s Taklamakan Desert, at the end of a long walkway lined with poplar trees. An elevated mud structure, the shrine would easily be camouflaged by the sand if not for the flags, rams’ skulls and strips of cloth decorating it. It is located near the town of Hotan, in the autonomous region of Xinjiang, in the country’s northwest— the homeland of the Turkic-speaking Uyghur Muslim community. For centuries, Uyghur Sufis would journey through the desert between shrines such as this one, stopping at each to recite poems celebrating religious heroes.

“Chinese people don’t come here,” said Tudi Mohammad, a 50-year-old sheikh who is the shrine’s guardian. “It’s not a tourist site.”

Mohammad has lived near the shrine for most of his life; his father was also its guardian. He remembered how thousands of people would visit the shrine in May, when locals commemorated the anniversary of the saint’s death. But now, he said, the government has prohibited that ceremony, and Uyghurs come to the tomb in tens, at most. Before he could elaborate, a police car arrived at the shrine. Several personnel entered the building with large batons in hand, demanding that we leave.

Mohammad turned around and returned to his room near the shrine’s entrance, glancing pointedly at a security camera hanging above his door.
Xinjiang is one of China’s most politically tense regions, and the government maintains a heavy security presence here in the name of countering extremism and separatism. In June, China’s State Council Information Office released a white paper praising what it claimed were unprecedented levels of religious freedom for Uyghurs in Xinjiang. Its claims ring true at some level: select religious and cultural sites—including some state-constructed ones—are open and functioning. Others, however, such as the shrine of Imam Asim, are heavily policed. Some are even closed completely; the Orda Padishahim shrine, about 60 kilometres from the city of Kashgar, which used to attract hundreds of thousands of pilgrims annually, has been shut for a decade. When I told locals I hoped to visit the shrine, they said that doing so was illegal, and warned that I would be stopped by the police.

The crackdown on Uyghur places of worship is part of a larger programme of persecution of the minority group by the Chinese state. Uyghurs in schools or government offices are forbidden from wearing headscarves or fasting during Ramadan. Those under 18 years of age cannot enter mosques, young men cannot grow beards, and no one can wear clothing marked with a crescent moon. While these restrictions have existed for decades, their enforcement has intensified since 2009, after Xinjiang’s capital, Urumqi, was wracked by violent ethnic riots. In the wake of such repression, fear, militancy and ethnic strife have grown in Xinjiang.

When I visited the region in June, Ramadan celebrations were muted. Even in the mostly Uyghur city of Yarkand, the streets were nearly empty in the evenings and only one restaurant was open for iftar. Uyghur families filled the tables to share meals of carrot, raisin and lamb pilaf, pulled noodles in beef stew, yogurt pitchers and plates of fruit.

“It’s too quiet,” one Uyghur, a driver in his mid twenties, told me. He added that “the last few years have been bad,” and that before then, people would have been spilling out into the streets to break their fasts, but now they weren’t even leaving their houses. “The economy is down, but also, people are afraid.”

During Ramadan in 2014, ethnic riots broke out in Yarkand. According to Chinese state sources, at least 96 people were killed and 215 arrested when separatists attacked a police station. Local authorities’ discovery of suspicious explosives had prompted an extremist rampage, the state narrative went, as knife-wielding gangs terrorised the streets, burning cars, killing civilians and targeting government offices. In contrast, the US-sponsored Radio Free Asia reported that Chinese security forces massacred at least 2,000 Uyghurs after a violent riot over the extrajudicial killing of a Uyghur family that had disputed the headscarf restrictions.

Even after two years, the Uyghurs I met in Yarkand refused to tell me what had happened. But one Kashgar resident—a woman of the nationally dominant Han ethnicity—said that many more Uyghurs had been killed than the state sources acknowledged. “So many Han people left Yarkand after that,” she said. “They’re afraid of southern Xinjiang.” Even in Kashgar, she continued, clashes between Uyghurs and security forces are regular but usually go unreported. “The government wants people to settle here, so they want Xinjiang to seem safe. But you never know what will happen.”

Since the Urumqi riots, some Uyghurs have escalated their resistance tactics to the point of militancy. In 2013, a radical Uyghur Islamist group claimed responsibility for a car attack in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square that killed five people. In 2014, hundreds of civilians were killed or injured over the course of several attacks, including a mass stabbing in Kunming and a bombing at a street market in Urumqi. In September 2015, knife-wielding attackers killed at least 50 civilians—mostly Han—at a coal mine in Aksu. Some radicals have pointed to state violence as a reason for their militancy. The May 2016 issue of the magazine of the Turkestan Islamic Party, which fights for the establishment of a fundamentalist Islamic state in Xinjiang, carried headlines that included “Crimes of the Chinese Communist Regime,” and “China has adopted controversial laws on the fight against terrorism.”

The state has adopted heavy-handed measures to stem such militancy. In November 2014, the prominent Uyghur intellectual Ilham Tohti was sentenced to life imprisonment on charges of separatism, after he criticised Chinese policies in Xinjiang. In November 2015, Chinese security forces killed 28 Uyghurs who they claimed were criminals responsible for the Aksu attack. But Radio Free Asia again disputed this, saying that those killed included innocent women and children.

In everyday life, this crackdown can take the form of excessive police scrutiny. At a night market in Hotan, I saw Uyghurs and Han Chinese socialising, mostly speaking in Mandarin and eating each other’s versions of kebabs, dumplings and glutinous rice desserts. Yet police standing at the market entrance routinely searched passing Uyghurs, checking their IDs and mobile phones, all the while waving Han individuals through. One Uyghur policeman apologised to a Uyghur man as he was searched. “This is just policy,” he said. “We have to fill a quota of people that we’ve checked every day.” At least ten checkpoints exist on the 500-kilometre road between Hotan and Kashgar, where Uyghur travellers are thoroughly searched, and some forced to turn back.

This strict policing may not even be in the interest of the Chinese state. Rian Thum, a scholar who recently published a book on Uyghur pilgrimages in southern Xinjiang, noted that the forms of Islam practised in many of the community’s shrines have long been peaceful alternatives to more extremist ideologies. “Many people involved in nationalist movements were very anti-shrine,” Thum told me over the phone. “The reformist or even fundamentalist approaches to Islam saw shrine veneration as a type of shirk—associating other deities with God.” Ironically, suppressing such types of Islam may only make Uyghurs more susceptible to calls for violent resistance.

In Yarkand’s old-town area, I visited a state-designated tourist site: the mausoleum of Ammanishahan, a sixteenth-century queen famous for composing muqam—a type of traditional Uyghur opera. At the entrance, a sign read: “Great Mistress ad Poetress of Mukam Music: Ammanishahan’s Mausoleum,” in English, with adjacent translations in Mandarin and Uyghur. The mausoleum sat beside a garden filled with engraved white tombs. The Chinese government had spent 420,000 renminbi in 1993 to restore this site, an informational sign read. Ammanishahan’s muqams are “a jewel in the brilliant treasure chest of Chinese ethnic culture,” another added. One pair of Han tourists walked around the otherwise empty site, their 20-renminbi entrance tickets in hand.

But Uyghur visitors to Yarkand flock instead to the public Muslim cemetery, several minutes’ walk away from the mausoleum. There, I saw a stream of Uyghurs trickling in and out of the Chiltenmalik shrine, a towering brick structure housing the tombs of seven holy men. A sheikh sat cross-legged at the entrance, his eyes closed. When I asked my Uyghur guide whether Han tourists ever visited this site, he laughed. “No. This cemetery is a home for the homeless,” he said, pointing to a beggar sleeping inside an abandoned structure, and elderly Uyghurs panhandling amid rows of mud graves. He brought me to another tomb, several feet away from the shrine, its façade adorned with fading, centuries-old blue tiles. Its gate was padlocked, letting in only a sliver of light to reveal Arabic inscriptions on the walls. “The authorities closed this for security reasons, saying the building was too old and might injure visitors,” the guide said. “But no one has come to fix or open it for years.”

Source: http://pulitzercenter.org/reporting/silent-prayer-chinese-states-siege-uyghur-ways-worship 

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My name is Gulnaz and I am a Uyghur Muslim


My name is Gulnaz and I am a Uyghur Muslim. My place of birth is East Turkestan but the world knows it as Xinjiang because China says so. When I was a child, entering my teenage, an eleven year old, my family flea “Xinjiang” and till then I had seen enough. Till then an 11 yr old girl had seen enough to understand that she was not safe in China. Today my age is 23 yrs and even after so many years, Xinjiang still Haunts me.
I remember being not allowed to attend school because I had to work in fields with my father. Sometimes I would work alone if my father was unwell. My little hands weren’t able to help much but I had no choice. I remember the eyes of Chinese guards looking at us in the market , it made me feel like I belong to a different planet which is disliked by them. This happened only because we were Uyghurs and Muslims. One Night, they stormed our house , checking every nook and corner. My mother hide me in the basement , gave me a little bottle with liquid in it and instructed me to drink it if an officer tries to touch me. Thankfully, nothing happened and we were told that these are normal search operations. But soon a horrific incident followed which forced us to flea the country.
One of my aunts in neighborhood was pregnant with her second child and her family was planning to send her away as Uyghurs weren’t allowed to have a second child. Somehow the Chinese officials came to know about my aunt and they forced her for abortion. In a dingy hospital room, one night, she died. Patime was 6 months pregnant and doctors operated her while risking her life.
This incident shocked my family and my father decided to leave China. We immediately fled to Turkey but kept changing places, sometimes countries, every two years or so.
All this time we kept hearing news about China’s crackdown on Uyghurs, Urumqi Massacre, demolishing mosques, arresting innocents and about their raids to find Uyghurs living abroad too. My father warned us to never reveal our Uyghur identities and refrained from teaching us about the Uyghur culture too. The terrifying news of Thailand detaining 300 Uyghurs and sending them back to China instilled fear in us again. The fact that no protests or hunger strikes by detained Uyghurs could save them made it clear that once China finds about our family then we will be punished too.
Despite of all the hardships we faced, My father never compromised with our education and he made sure that we got a good schooling. He thinks that only good education can lead us out of this path of slavery or fear. Today, he wants me to become a teacher so that I can contribute in making our world a better place for everyone. Although, I think that I am an activist from inside and whenever I listen or come across a news of Injustice , my blood boils and I become determined to do something. Our world has been seen as divided between First World and Third World countries but Uyghurs aren’t given place in any of those spheres. We are people living in a fourth country which has been left to suffer by the world leaders but Why? Aren’t Uyghurs Human beings too? So few years back, the Uyghur in me took over and I made my account on Twitter(@iamgul8).
Here I try to talk with as many people as I can to convey the struggle of Uyghurs in China. Why should we suffer just because we are Uyghurs or Muslims? What is our crime? Out of many people I contacted , some of them always asked about my story, so this is for them. But I can’t tell anything else because that can leave my family in trouble.
After this story, my chances of being chased by Chinese officials are increased and I may go silent . But our story is important . The world has long enough ignored Uyghurs and now they have to stand with us. Like many Uyghurs another Gulnaz may get abducted,tortured or killed but her fight, our fight against injustice must be continued by someone and it has to be you!
In search of a safe world,
Gulnaz Uighur

15 things You Need To Know About China’s Torture of Uyghur Muslims


By Gulnaz Uyghur

The Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region is China’s largest provincial unit, accounting for one sixth of the Chinese territory. This region does not belong to the country as it was occupied in 1949. Uyghur Muslims are the ethnic population of this region and call this land, East Turkestan. Even after its occupation, the demands for freedom has always been alive and keeps growing due to the ruthless suppression of Muslims by the Chinese Government.

Below are the 15 ways through which Chinese authorities torture Uyghurs and suffocate them in their own land.

1. Forced Labour is Mandatory for Uyghurs

In Xinjiang, it is compulsory for Uyghur residents to participate in unpaid labor, called hashar. They are not provided any compensation for their labor and forced to pay for their own transportation and meal costs. Workers who are injured are also required to look after their own medical expenses. In some cases, if someone sends a family member to work, then Uyghurs need to pay a fine for that.
2. Children are also pulled out for forced labor

Uyghur families that do not have an able bodied young men are also not exempt from the system. Men and women as old as 70 and children as young as 12 are reported to have participated. Uyghur secondary school students are at times pulled out of classrooms in order to meet laborquotas.
3. Teenagers are arrested due to posts on social media

Young Uyghurs are arrested for posting comments on social media or watching Islamic videos online. Once a 15 yr old was arrested in the same case and sentenced for 10 years!.Other than this not many people are given internet connection and Police can arrest anyone for watching anything online! Uyghur homes are also raided for materials deemed “extreme” or “subversive.

4. Muslim farmers are required to sell below market rates

Government regulations require many Uyghur farmers to sell their produce to local governments at below market prices. This results in extreme poverty for the Uyghur families as they are not able to earn appropriate money to feed their own families.
5. Farmlands are confiscated by the government

It has become common for Chinese authorities to confiscate farmland and property of Uyghurs. These assets are then redistributed to Chinese migrants. Uyghurs who petition these practices are often charged without trial for “harming ethnic unity”.
6. Discrimination of Uyghurs

On paper, the Chinese migrants are shown equal to Uyghurs. In reality, they enjoy far more entitlements than Uyghur farmers. The Chinese migrants not only enjoy the freedom to harvest any crop, they can also take out bank loans and are entitled to greater water resources.
7. A man was shot for keeping a beard

No man, in Xinjiang is allowed to keep beard. Uyghur men refusing to shave their beards are frequently harassed, intimidated, with one man having been shot by police in one instance. According to the Chinese Government keeping a beard is a sign of being an extremist.
8. Most Uyghur don’t know about their basic rights

Most of the Uyghur population, especially those of the older generation, lack a basic knowledge of human rights and don’t even know their rights as citizens according to the constitution. This is because they have never been given these rights and lack of education has also played a very large role in it. Most of the times they are exploited by claiming that it’s a law.
9. Nikah is considered illegal in China

In April 2014, Chinese authorities instigated a system of rewards, some exceeding more than 50,000 Yuan (USD 7500), for whistle-blowers who reported on a range of illegal religious activities including the wearing of beards and the practice of Nikah, a traditional religious marriage ceremony. Chinese authorities take harsh steps to ban religious freedom in East Turkestan.
10. Muslims are ordered to sell Alcohol

Chinese authorities in Hotan County, Hotan Prefecture ordered shopkeepers to stock alcohol and cigarettes in a campaign to “weaken religion,” as Uyghur residents refrained from drinking and smoking for religious reasons. All these actions are a part of ‘Strike hard campaign’ by the government, which is actually a campaign against Uyghur Muslims.
11. Muslim names are banned

The Chinese Government has banned Muslim names in the region. The security officials go from house-to-house ordering parents to ensure that their children’s names do not fall on a list of 22 banned names. Which include mostly Muslim names. Uyghur parents are not even allowed to name their child according to their wish.
12. Imams are imprisoned

No one in Xinjiang is allowed to teach Quran outside the mosques. And children below 18 years old are not allowed to enter the Mosques. It is a crime to give any kind of teaching related to Islam in Xinjiang. Often parents are harassed for even keeping the Quran at home. Religious leaders often serve prison sentences for the peaceful observation and practice of Islam.
13. Every year Ramadan is banned

During the holy month of Ramadan, restaurants in Hotan have been forbidden from being shutting down. Workers are forced to participate in educational activities on atheism. Government servants, students and anyone working for the party is not allowed to celebrate Ramadan. Various competitions related to eating and drinking are organized in the region to force feed people during the month.
14. Women are forced to abort their child

Pregnant Uyghur women in stages of gestation as late as 9 months have been forced to undergo abortions in some cases under China’s one-child policy. This practice is still brutally followed in Xinjiang and Uyghur women are sometimes forced to flee their homes due to this.
15. Uyghurs are not allowed to leave China

In 2014, Chinese authorities in Hotan began limiting Uyghurs’ ability to travel, both domestically and abroad through passport restrictions. These restrictions have increased now as the police authorities are collecting the passports of Uyghurs and keeping them in the office. At present , it is impossible for Uyghurs to travel abroad as first they would need to face interrogation which will most probably result in their arrest.