The poet Perhat Tursun, one of the foremost living writers in the Uyghur language, is one of around 1 million who have been disappeared by the Chinese state into the so-called re-education camps. Turson has been missing since his detention in January 2018. In one of his poems, he writes presciently:
“When they search the streets and cannot find my vanished figure
Do you know that I am with you”.
The Foreign Secretary must go further than today’s announcements. Uyghurs are not being persecuted for what they pick, but for who they are. As with the Tibetans, does he support their right to the self-determination that they seek?