ETNAM, allies hold joint demonstration calling on UN to STOP China’s Concentration Camps & Prevent 21st Century Holocaust in East Turkistan
Today, September 18, 2018, marks the opening of the United Nations 73rd General Assembly at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City, NY. To mark this occasion, the East Turkistan National Awakening Movement (“ETNAM”) joined together with Students for A Free Tibet, the Turkish American Federation, the Kazakh Democratic Movement, and members of the Southern Mongolian, Hong Kong, and Taiwanese community to call on the United Nations to adhere to its laws and hold China accountable for the mass violations that it is committing in East Turkistan, Tibet, and Southern Mongolia. This day is an important occasion to remind the United Nations and leaders of the world to keep the victims of China’s oppression and occupation in our collective memory and to continue to seek justice, accountability, and freedom on their behalf.
Despite the heavy rain, over 200 Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Tibetans, Mongols, Taiwanese, and American supporters actively participated from 10AM – 4PM calling on the UN to “STOP CHINA and save the people of East Turkistan, Tibet, Southern Mongolia, and Hong Kong!” ETNAM and Students for a Free Tibet rejected the false assertion that China had extended them any degree of “autonomy,” called for an end to Chinese occupation, & demanded the restoration of East Turkistan, Tibetan, and Southern Mongolian Independence. They also called on the United Nations, world leaders, and the international media to “STOP China’s concentration camps and Prevent a 21st Century Holocaust!” ETNAM sees the restoration of East Turkistan’s Independence as the only way to ensure the future survival of the Uyghur and Turkic peoples of East Turkistan.
China has illegally occupied and colonized East Turkistan, Tibet, and Southern Mongolia (also known as Inner Mongolia) for over 68 years. Over the years, China has used colonial style policies of genocide to oppress, marginalize, and assimilate (if not eradicate) the distinct identity of the peoples of East Turkistan, Tibet, and Southern Mongolia. In recent years, China has increased its totalitarian rule and ruthless oppression following Xi Jinping’s ascent to power and moved towards an openly fascist governance by seeking eradicating all aspects of culture and identity deemed as non-Chinese.
A result of China’s push towards fascism has led to over 3 million of Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, Uzbeks, and Tartars to be incarcerated in “counter extremism” and “political and cultural re-education” concentration camps in East Turkistan, according to findings by the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination; Uyghur and Kazakh sources however estimate that the number is much higher. Hundreds of thousands of Uyghur children have forcibly separated from their families and tens of thousands of Uyghur women have been forcibly married to ethnic Chinese men in a bid to eradicate the future of Uyghur existence.
Furthermore, China has targeted all religions, destroying mosques, churches, and temples across East Turkistan, Tibet, Southern Mongolia, and even in China proper itself, deeming Islam an “ideological virus” and Christianity a western threat to Chinese culture and way of life. The issue of human rights violations, religious persecution, and covert genocide in East Turkistan, Tibet, and Southern Mongolia has been raised in the past, however it has been largely ignored by the international community, and the global media.
Thus, we call on the United Nations, world leaders, and the global media to break the cycle of silence and actively strive to stop the oppression and illegal occupation of East Turkistan, Tibet, and Southern Mongolia by the Chinese government. At bare minimum, we ask that the international community (1) recognize that these territories are Occupied by China, (2) acknowledge that what is occurring is indeed Genocide, especially the situation in East Turkistan, & (3) uphold & enforce the United Nations’ Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.
We further call upon China to (1) immediately, & without precondition, release the millions of people incarcerated in these concentration camps, to (2) re-unite the hundreds of thousands of Uyghur children that have been separated from their families, & to (3) end the occupation of East Turkistan.