cotler1_David CliffAnadolu Agency via Getty Images_chinauyghurgenocide David Cliff/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
en English

China’s Uyghur Genocide Is Undeniable

The Chinese state’s atrocities against the Uyghur people of Xinjiang province are a clear violation of the 1948 United Nations Genocide Convention. With all other paths to justice foreclosed, the responsibility falls on national governments to speak up for the victims and fulfill their obligations under international law.

MONTREAL – Parliaments around the world are increasingly declaring that the mass atrocities against the Uyghur people in China’s Xinjiang region constitute genocide – a determination resoundingly supported by an overwhelming body of evidence and international law. Absent a competent international body, state parties to the 1948 United Nations Genocide Convention have a responsibility to prevent and hold China accountable for this crime of crimes, securing justice for the victims and ending impunity for the violators.

The Genocide Convention defines genocide as any one of five acts “committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a [protected group], as such.” In addition to killing, these acts include causing serious bodily or mental harm, deliberately inflicting conditions of life calculated to bring about the group’s physical destruction in whole or in part, imposing birth-prevention measures, or forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

China has committed every one of these acts in its state-orchestrated campaign against the Uyghurs – most of them on a systematic and widespread basis. As a result of the mass internment and imprisonment on catchall charges such as being “untrustworthy,” a large number of Uyghurs have died in detention. The Chinese government does not even spare lifelong Uyghur members of the Communist Party of China (CPC) or intellectuals whom it praised in the past, thus debunking any notion that their detention is about re-education or instilling loyalty to the regime in Beijing.