China: Ethnic Groups

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 6th December 2018.

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Photo of Rosena Allin-Khan Rosena Allin-Khan Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) (Sport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent representations he has received on the detention of Uighur Muslims in China; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Mark Field Mark Field Minister of State

We have serious concerns about the human rights situation in Xinjiang and the Chinese Government’s deepening crackdown; including credible reports of re-education camps and widespread surveillance and restrictions targeted at ethnic minorities.

During China’s Universal Periodic Review at the UN Human Rights Council on 6 November, the UK made a statement which described our concern about the treatment of ethnic minorities in China, including Uyghurs. We issued a specific recommendation, calling on China to implement the recommendations by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on Xinjiang, and to allow the UN to monitor the implementation. We also raised our concerns about Xinjiang in our Item 4 statement at the September UN Human Rights Council, and we supported the statement of 26 October by the European External Action Service highlighting concerns about Xinjiang.

I raised our concerns about Xinjiang with Vice Minister Guo Yezhou during my visit to China on 22 July 2018. The Foreign Secretary also raised our concerns about the region with Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi during his visit to China on 30 July 2018.

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