Hong Kong, October 24 (ANI): A group of 43 countries has denounced China for its human rights abuse of Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang.
The group of countries from all continents rebuked China for its detainment of Uyghurs in the western region of Xinjiang, reported The HK Post.
Generally, Western nations have been vocal about Beijing's human rights record at the UN General Assembly's human rights committee and this year Turkey, Eswatini and Liberia joined them.
The new additions to last year's group, which included 39 nations, push back Chinese claims that the rebuke is part of a Western effort to keep China from rising.
"We have seen an increasing number of reports of widespread and systematic human rights violations, including reports documenting torture or cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment, forced sterilization, sexual and gender-based violence, and forced separation of children," French Ambassador Nicolas de Riviere said on behalf of the group.
He further added that "widespread surveillance disproportionately continues to target Uyghurs and members of other minorities", reported The HK Post.
Meanwhile, a new report published by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) based in Canberra called for an investigation in China's Xinjiang following the publication of leaked documents allegedly detailing Uyghur repression.
Between July 2016 and June 2017, government monitors assigned by Beijing flagged at least 1,869,310 Uyghurs and other citizens in Xinjiang for using Zapya (file-sharing application), the report revealed. ASPI's latest report is based on thousands of documents leaked to the think tank, reported The HK Post.
Since early 2017, vast numbers of Uyghur men and women, as well as other Muslim ethnic minorities, have been arbitrarily detained or imprisoned according to the United Nations and human rights groups.
They include hundreds of thousands who have been sent to prisons, in addition to the one million the UN estimates to have been sent to internment camps.
The detentions and alleged abuses inside enclosed government facilities have been described by the United States and international human rights groups as a form of genocide constituting crimes against humanity.
Last month, Amnesty International accused China of creating a "dystopian hellscape" in Xinjiang. Amnesty said the minority groups had been forced to abandon their religious traditions, language and culture, and subjected to mass surveillance, supporting previous allegations of genocide and ethnic cleansing committed within a network of hundreds of detention centres, reported The HK Post.
The international community has been putting pressure on China over its treatment of Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, where the UN estimates hundreds of thousands of members of the ethnic minority have been held in re-education camps.
Beijing has defended the camps as vocational education centres intended to purge ideological diseases, including terrorism and religious extremism.
The UN group further called on China to allow immediate, meaningful and unfettered access to Xinjiang for independent observers, including the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.
The group also called on countries not to send back asylum-seekers from Xinjiang in light of the human rights situation there, reported The HK Post. (ANI)