China replaces Xinjiang party chief Chen Quanguo

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Chen Quanguo, who no longer serves as secretary of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Regional Committee (XUAR) of the CPC, will be given another appointment…reports Asian Lite News

China has replaced Chen Quanguo, who served as the Communist Party chief in the Xinjiang region, local media reported.

The Xinjiang region in western China is home to Uyghurs, ethnic Kazakhs, ethnic Kyrgyz, and other traditionally Muslim minority groups. Chen, in his post since 2016, oversaw a security crackdown against ethnic minorities, under the garb of fighting religious extremism.

Ma Xingrui, governor of the coastal economic powerhouse Guangdong province, has been appointed as the new party chief in the province, Xinhua News Agency said on Saturday.

Chen Quanguo, who no longer serves as secretary of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Regional Committee (XUAR) of the CPC, will be given another appointment, according to the news agency.

Chen is considered as the person behind the draconian security apparatus in Tibet and a mastermind behind the camps in Xinjiang which incarcerate over a million Uyghur minorities. Last year, he was sanctioned by the US for serious rights abuses against ethnic minorities in Xinjiang.

“XUAR is the regional government of Xinjiang and falls under the governance of the PRC. Chen Quanguo (Chen) is the Party Secretary of the XUAR, a position he was appointed to in 2016, following Chen’s notorious history of intensifying security operations in the Tibetan Autonomous Region to tighten control over the Tibetan ethnic minorities,” US treasury department had said in a release.

Last month, several Billboards were put in the streets of London demanding the arrest of Chen Quanguo. The message on the boards urged the United Kingdom to act against the Chinese leader for the repression of Uyghurs and Tibetan communities.

Uyghur forced labour prevention act

China’s Xinjiang government had called the US signing of the so-called Uyghur forced labour prevention act as open interference in China’s internal affairs with a purpose to contain China.

Xu Guixiang, the Xinjiang regional government spokesperson, made the remarks at a press conference held on Saturday in Beijing, which came closely after US President Joe Biden signed legislation that bans products made in China’s Xinjiang, citing “oppression” of the Uygurs and other minorities, Global Times reported.

On Friday, the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National People’s Congress also said that China will take firm and strong countermeasures if the US insists on acting arbitrarily.

Xu told the media that the US bill seriously distorted the actual situation in Xinjiang. The region has been earnestly implementing relevant laws in the region and strictly forbid any forced labour.

The so-called Uygur forced labour prevention act seriously violated the international laws and norms of international relations. Based on the Forced Labour Convention, Xinjiang does not have the “forced labour” problem. This is a typical “long-arm jurisdiction”.

On Thursday, US President Joe Biden signed the Bill which bans the import of goods made with the allegedly forced labour of Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, Tibetans, or members of other “persecuted groups” in China.

US lawmakers accuse China of imprisoning as many as 1.8 million Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz and members of other Muslim minority groups in a system of extrajudicial mass internment camps, where they are forced to produce textiles, electronics, food products, shoes, tea, and handicrafts.

Beijing, on the other hand, has repeatedly denied all accusations of being engaged in abuses in Xinjiang.

The US actions come in the backdrop of a growing campaign to boycott Beijing Winter Olympics 2022.

Five other countries, along with the United States, have already announced a diplomatic boycott of the games to protest against China’s human rights abuses.

Meanwhile, China continues to deny accusations of forced labour or persecution of minority communities. (ANI)

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