Uyghur Update: November 25th – 2nd December

I am… so tired… and so busy… I have a 4-day conference tomorrow haha…


In the Uyghur Region

The Diplomat has picked up on the pressures Kazakh and Kyrgyz are facing from China. Apparently the Kazakh government is in talks with China. But families are being arrested on return from Kazakhstan.

A report by Michael Clarke (ANU) on China’s “three warfares” (public opinion, psychological warfare and legal warfare) regarding Uyghurs. It’s short and sweet and touches on a lot of important issues that are not always talked about.

I just wanted to share this Tweet which seems to represent some of the public sentiment about how to fix the “Xinjiang, Taiwan problems”. She also talks about her troubles with security checkpoints while travelling. Also this image from the same account:


…it seems ironic to put up pictures of Mao to keep away trouble, especially when you consider how Uyghurs would use tuman or verses of the Quran to keep away trouble or avert evil eye.

China has apparently found 1.2 billion tonnes of high quality oil near Karamay… ya Allah…

I found this Tweet about a Hui man who says his wife was murdered by the Chinese government (jail, torture, refusing cancer treatment) for apparently helping homeless people.


In Memorandum 

Ghazi Ahmed, prolific artist and painter of one of the most reproduced pieces of art in modern Uyghur history, passed away on the 26th in Urumchi.


Shortly after, famous linguist and turcologist Mirsultan Osmanov (1929-2017) also passed away. He was a well-known expert on studies of classical authors (Mahmut Kashgari, Yusuf Has Hajip, Alisher Nawayi).



Update on some Chinese hacking news:

A Chinese internet-security firm that researchers say is behind sophisticated attacks on Western energy and defense companies disbanded this month amid U.S. accusations that some of its shareholders were involved in hacking and theft of trade secrets.

Here’s an article looking at how Chinese tech companies help the government spy on people all over the world.


Language Education

I came across this website: Ana Care & Education. It seems to be an Uyghur language school in Fairfax, VA (USA). They’ll be opening in January and there will also be dance classes, ESL classes, and an after-school program. Nice!

WUC the Society for Threatened Peoples are holding an event at the Palais des Nations, at the 10th session of the UN Minority Forum – Native Languages in a Contemporary World: Threats and Challenges for Youth. They will be discussing the importance of language.

Based on this survey it seems like Indiana University is interested in creating an online Uyghur language course! I have been waiting for this for so long omg.

Meanwhile China is recruiting even more teachers for this bilingual education thing.

WUC was at the UN Minorities Forum and spoke about how minority languages should be seen as mutually beneficial and China’s banning of them should be addressed.


Human Rights Organisations

UHRP has released a 45-page report titled “The Fifth Poison: the Harassment of Uyghurs Overseas“. The title refers to the “Five Poisons” China likes to label Uyghurs, Tibetans, Falun Gong, Chinese democrats and Taiwanese independence advocates. UHRP released a little summary/intro for those interested in reading the report.

Amnesty International has created an email petition to release Buzainaf Abdureshid. You might remember her from an earlier petition on

Ilham Tohti and the directors of the Ilham Tohti Initiative received the Liberal International’s Prize for Freedom in The Hague. A photo from their Twitter account. There were also discussions on how to make international justice work.




This op-ed came out of Malaysia. It’s interesting to see what the Malaysian public think about the Uyghur escapees in the context of Malaysian foreign policy. Two Uyghurs were recaptured near the Thai/Malay border. They’re only 22 and 24. I’m 23. I hope they’re not sent to China.


The Canadian prime minister is visiting China this weekend, and we have the open letters asking him to talk about human rights issues. I have slightly more hope for Trudeau than Trump, but eh we’ll see. Apparently he cares very much for the four Canadians imprisoned in China, one of whom is Huseyin Celil, an Uyghur dissident.


Apparently China will be sending troops to Syria to aid President Bashar Al-Assad. But they had said something like that a few years back without any real follow up so… treat all news with skepticism until you see evidence?


An Uyghur man was recently detained in Dubai, even after his request for asylum was accepted by UNHCR, and he could be repatriated to China. The article goes through the way China is aggressively monitoring Uyghurs in Turkey and UAE by detaining family members in ET and using Interpol to track down those overseas.


Update on the China/Germany/Tibet soccer news: the Global Times published an article that basically says “separatism” should not be protected by “freedom of speech” and that Germany should deal with this issue properly rather than protecting these splittists. I am actually surprised they are making such a huge deal out of this. 6 people stood up with Tibetan flags in the stands of an U-20s friendly match. That’s it. Imagine how bad it is in Tibet or East Turkestan itself.


An article by the author of that book that was stopped from publishing in Australia explaining the “real reason” why we won’t be reading his book any time soon. Basically the publishers are afraid of backlash from the Chinese government. The author points out that this this not a Chinese people issue – it’s specifically the Party that is the problem, not the ethnicity. There are a lot of Chinese who come to Australia to move away from the government’s restrictive policies:

Even so, there is a risk that exposing the activities of the CCP may cause an anti-Chinese backlash from those Australians who confuse “Chinese people” with the Communist Party (just as the CCP wants us to).

I have asked my Chinese-Australian friends how they feel about this risk and their response has been uniform. One put it this way: “We want you to say it. We’re in the same boat. It’s nothing to do with ethnicity, it’s political. If something is wrong, we must try to correct it.”

In a somewhat related vein, this article came out saying we need cooler heads in talking about Chinese influence in Australia. This comes in light of yet another Dastyari scandal (for those outside of Australian politics, he’s this politician who’s had just… a lot of media attention for things recently, including but not limited to: offering Hanson (a racist politician) a Halal Snack Pack, being in China’s pocket, and being attacked by racists in a bar). I agree there’s a need to stop sensationalising it and talk about it in a rational manner..


Senator Marco Rubio and Representative Chris Smith wrote a letter “…urging vetting of officials responsible for violations targeting human rights lawyers, ethnic minorities, religious leaders and those responsible for the arbitrary detentions of Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia.” They mention the religious restrictions on Uyghur people and the “political education centres” Uyghurs and Kazakhs are being sent to.


This doesn’t have much to do with Uyghurs but I thought it was interesting that they refer to that part of Central Asia as the Turkestan region.

Here’s a report on how Turkey is deporting Central Asian people. It focuses on an Uzbek family but also mentions Uyghurs.


Outside of Politics

Someone put together a few pictures of the Silk Road, including some of East Turkestan.

This was recorded around 3 years ago but I found it recently and thought it was interesting because they talk about Uyghur music and “U-pop”. The guy being interviewed is Andrew Demetre who authored Drinking and Driving in Urumqi (a book on his travels to Urumqi), and created this “radio” because of his appreciation for Uyghur music. Also he plays Izlidim which is also my favourite bgm for car rides so big up lol. The story of Batur was one I had never heard before but his music is so familiar T_T.


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