Here's a summary of Uyghur-related news from around the world this week.
Uyghur Writer Dies After Prison Release During COVID Lockdown
Uyghur writer Abdulla Sawut, 72, died lacking food and medical treatment during a COVID lockdown last month, a Chinese government employee in Xinjiang confirmed to Radio Free Asia’s Uyghur Service. Sawut was sentenced to prison in 2017 on charges of separatism for his writings about Uyghur history. He died soon after he was released from prison in poor health, according to the RFA’s investigative report.
Japanese Artist Produces 7th Manga Book on Internment Camps in Xinjiang
Tomomi Shimizu, a Japanese writer and illustrator, released her seventh manga book depicting alleged persecution of Uyghur women in internment camps in Xinjiang. Her latest work is based on testimonies of an Uzbek woman from Xinjiang who was forced to teach Mandarin to Uyghur detainees in an internment or “re-education” camp in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang.
Uyghur Muslim Religious Leader Dies in Prison
Omar Huseyin, 55, a former Uyghur imam of a mosque in Xinjiang, died of cancer in prison last February while serving a five-year prison term since 2017 for making a religious pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia in 2015, a resident in Xinjiang told Radio Free Asia.
Turkey Says China Prevented Turkish Delegation's Visit to Xinjiang
Last week, at a year-end press conference, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that China had prevented a Turkish delegation visit to the Uyghur region in China to observe how the Uyghurs were being treated by Chinese authorities.
Rights Advocates: World Must Focus on China's Actions in Xinjiang
Rights activists are demanding that the international community focus on an international, independent investigation into crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and work toward an end to Uyghur forced labor in 2023.
Repression of Uyghurs Detailed
A Uyghur emigre, who requested to use an assumed name for fear of reprisal from the Chinese government, told VOA that in 2022, China continued its repressive system in Xinjiang toward the Uyghurs and other Muslim groups. According to the Uyghur man, the government measures included restriction of domestic movement and international travel.
Quote of Note
"Any Uyghur passport holder should be able to present a consent document from the Xinjiang authorities at any customs in China. If a Uyghur person has a valid Chinese passport and a visa to go to a certain country but doesn’t have that government consent document, customs won’t let them cross the border. When a Uyghur presents his Chinese ID, passport and consent document to the customs officers, they would take that person to a special designated place for Uyghurs and then call the police authorities in Xinjiang to authenticate the document. If the Xinjiang police corroborate, then customs would let them go." — Jamal (assumed name), Uyghur exile