Press Release – For Immediate Release
January 27, 2020
Contact: East Turkistan National Awakening Movement www.NationalAwakening.org
+1 (202) 599 – 2244 (Ext: 2) or firstname.lastname@example.org
Event: March to Commemorate Ghulja Massacre
Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2020
Time: 1PM -3PM
Location: White House (Pennsylvania Ave.)
The East Turkistan National Awakening Movement (ETNAM) invites you to join us Wednesday February 5th, 1:00 PM-3:00PM, at the White House (Pennsylvania Ave across from Lafayette Square) to commemorate the 23rd anniversary of the Ghulja massacre.
In the early days of February 1997, hundreds of largely Uyghur Muslim residents gathered in the town of Ghulja in the Ili district in Chinese-occupied East Turkistan, to peacefully protest the recent execution of 30 Uyghur activists by the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the continued restrictions against their traditional way of life. On the morning of February 5th, as peaceful marches continued, armed Chinese security officials descended on Ghulja, arresting thousands of peaceful civilians, subjecting them to humiliating mistreatment; many were disfigured or lost limbs due to frostbite, others lost their lives. Protests and riots followed, which were met with a brutal crackdown by Chinese authorities. Reports from the region claim hundreds of Uyghurs lost their lives in the ensuing violence.
The tragedy in Ghulja was just the latest escalation in China’s decades-long campaign to disenfranchise the region’s predominantly Uyghur, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Tatar and other Turkic Muslim inhabitants—note: the CCP’s name for this territory, Xinjiang, literally means “new frontier,” an uncharacteristic admission of the weakness of China’s claim to the region. Beginning in the 1950’s, the authorities governing this once sovereign territory have employed a diverse and sinister array of policies, provocations and inducements designed to encourage large-scale immigration of ethnic Han Chinese (the majority within the traditional provinces of China), initiating a profound and continuing shift in the region’s demographics. The Han Chinese settlers enjoy virtual exclusive access to the high-paying jobs and capital investment that fueled the region’s transformation into the nexus of Asia’s industrial and economic future. Moreover, the CCP’s strategic settlement scheme effectively bifurcated the region, cutting off the largely Kazakh and Kyrgyz north from their linguistic and cultural kinsmen in the predominantly Uyghur south—disrupting centuries old networks of trade, cultural exchange and family links. These moves to divide and squeeze the resource-rich territory’s original inhabitants demoralized and weakened the community, a situation that is only exacerbated by the Communist Party’s arbitrary and incoherent policies regarding East Turkistanis’ freedom to worship as they choose and continue their traditional folkways.
The restrictions on religious freedom and cultural practices constitutes cultural genocide aimed at erasing all traces of the great civilization that once flourished in this strategic crossroads. East Turkistanis face a bleak choice: reject their ancestral language, religion, customs and familial ties or be erased. The CCP’s current campaign of rounding up Uyghur, Kazakhs, and other Muslims in concentration camps represents the endgame in their decades-long campaign to erase the cultural legacy of East Turkistan and replace it with the self-serving fiction of “Xinjiang.”
ETNAM calls on the U.S. Government to TAKE ACTION, through sanctions and other means, to STOP China’s genocide in occupied East Turkistan and we ask you to join our call.
Lastly, we call upon all people, worldwide, to continue engaging in a peaceful “information campaign” against Communist China by educating others about the human rights atrocities being perpetrated against Occupied East Turkistan’s oppressed people.