Chinese authorities launch anti-halal campaign

Uighur security personnel patrol near the Id Kah Mosque in Kashgar in western China's Xinjiang region. China's northwestern region of Xinjiang has revised legislation to allow the detention of suspected extremists

Uighur security personnel patrol near the Id Kah Mosque in Kashgar in western China's Xinjiang region. China's northwestern region of Xinjiang has revised legislation to allow the detention of suspected extremists

The Xinjiang government on Tuesday revised a local law to encourage "vocational skill education training centers" to "carry out anti-extremist ideological education", the CNN report said.

After initially rubbishing reports of mass detention of Uighur Muslims, China's Xinjiang provincial government has "legalised" detention camps.

China's western Xinjiang region has amended its laws to legitimise the detention of Uighurs, in a move that experts say is a response to the harsh foreign criticism of Beijing's ongoing crackdown on the predominantly Muslim minority.

In the past year, Beijing has radically attempted to tighten its hold over the remote region following a spate of violent attacks that the government blamed on Uyghur Muslim separatists trying to establish an independent state.

In July 2018, a former teacher at one of the camps who fled to Kazakhstan told a court there that "in China they call it a political camp but really it was a prison in the mountains".

The commission said Chinese authorities detained at least 14 people who had tried to honor Liu Xiaobo's life.

In a letter addressed to FBI Director Christopher A. Wray, Rubio and Smith called on the agency to look into allegations that the Chinese Communist Party is harassing and intimidating diaspora communities, including Uighurs with family in Xinjiang, on USA soil.

Mr Dolkun Isa, chairman of the Munich-based World Uyghur Congress, said the latest move was meant to "legalise" China's ongoing crackdown so as to deflect worldwide pressure.

Maya Wang, senior China researcher at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement that "no tweaks in national or regional rules" can change the nature of the camps.

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Survivors of the camps have said they faced vast psychological pressure, and had to disavow their beliefs, eat pork and drink alcohol.

Human rights organisations had also claimed that under the present legal system in China, there was no legal basis for setting up such camps.

In August, China told a United Nations committee that claims of mass imprisonment were untrue and that Xinjiang's citizens enjoyed equal freedoms and rights.

According to the document, to deter extremist activity in the region "in the special training centres hold events for individual and vocational qualification education".

The official Global Times said on Wednesday that the "demand that things be halal which can not really be halal" was fuelling hostility towards religion and allowing Islam to penetrate secular life.

"The tumultuous situation there has been brought under control, many lives being saved and peace/stability recovered".

"We see an ascendant and increasingly aggressive China, seeking to take center stage in the world, and in so doing, determined to shape new global norms on development, trade, the internet, and even human rights", the CECC said.

Anti-terror efforts in controversial "reeducation centres" in China's Xinjiang region will be governed by new standardised rules, as worldwide criticism mounts over the detention of as many one million in the restive far west.

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