KUALA LUMPUR: Muslim Youth Movement Malaysia (Abim) said that a proposed visit to Xinjiang, China by a Malaysian delegation would not resolve the plight of Uighur Muslims facing persecution there.
Its president, Muhammad Faisal Abdul Aziz, said that instead, China should stop trying to cover up atrocities committed against the ethnic minority, as the situation has been uncovered by the world’s media.
Abim was responding to an open invitation by Chinese embassy spokesperson Tang Tang to “visit Xinjiang and discover a beautiful, peaceful and prosperous real Xinjiang with your own eyes.”
The invitation was made in response to a demonstration staged by Abim and several other NGOs last Friday, urging China to halt its human rights violations against the Uighurs.
Faisal said that analysis of reports by international bodies such as the United Nations and Amnesty International, and by international mainstream media, has shown gross infringement of the Uighurs’ fundamental rights on a massive scale.
“Besides, we ourselves read about the draconian laws enforced in Xinjiang, particularly the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region Regulation on De-extremification 2017, where the provisions of the law prohibit Muslims in Xinjiang from wearing hijab, keeping a beard and promoting the concept of halal, which are claimed to interfere with other people’s secular lives.
“These oppressive provisions of law have allowed the Chinese government to abuse the fundamental rights of Uighur communities by interpreting any religious practice as equivalent to extremism and radicalism,” he said in a statement, today.
Faisal said that at the same time, Article 4 of the said provision states that the government must persist in “making Islam more Chinese”.
“It is totally against the spirit of freedom of religion and belief of the people when there are unreasonable interferences in religious affairs of Muslims, and they are forced to follow the incomprehensible laws that define Islam as a religion with an anti-religion doctrine,” he added.
Faisal added that the ongoing exodus of Uighur refugees, mostly women and children, refutes claims that the Uighur people are terrorists.
The mass flight clearly sends a message to the world that they are seeking help to fulfil their basic needs to live happily and freely, like any other people, he said.
“Thus, Abim firmly urges the Chinese government to solve the aforementioned issues, instead of persisting in efforts to normalise the persecution and atrocities committed against the Uighurs.
“Instead of leading us on a supervised trip to selected camps where Uighurs are detained, the Chinese government should let the United Nations independently observe the situation in Xinjiang, with reasonable access to all sources of information, without any interference.
Faisal said Abim is open to a frank dialogue and positive engagements with the Chinese government if the issues raised above are addressed in a transparent manner and in good faith.
“In fact, the stuffed panda and flowers brought by Abim during the protest the other day symbolised our peaceful intention to achieve those commitments,” he added. Sources: New Straits Times.