US-based institute says its legal findings show China breached Geneva Convention in Xinjiang
China is committing “genocide” against the Uyghur community in its autonomous region of Xinjiang, a new report released on Tuesday said.
The report, The Uyghur Genocide: An Examination of China’s Breaches of the 1948 Genocide Convention, is “based on an extensive review of the available evidence and application of international law to the evidence of the facts on the ground,” said US-based publisher Newlines Institute.
Experts examined whether China bears state responsibility for breaches of Article II of the Genocide Convention.
“Upon application of the said provisions of the Genocide Convention to the mass of evidence presented herein, this report concludes, based on a clear and convincing standard of proof, that China is responsible for breaches of each provision of Article II of the [Genocide] Convention,” the report noted.
The said article of the convention defines genocide as “when any of the enumerated acts are committed with the requisite intent to destroy, in whole or in part, [the protected group] as such.”
This intent is measured by objective standards, including official statements, policies, a general plan, a pattern of conduct, and repeated destructive acts, which have a logical sequence.
The report said President Xi Jinping “launched a ‘People’s War on Terror’ in the region and made the Uyghur-concentrated areas the front line, arguing that extremism has taken root in Uyghur society.”
“Camp guards reportedly follow orders to uphold the system in place until ‘Kazakhs, Uyghurs, and other Muslim nationalities, would disappear … until all Muslim nationalities would be extinct’,” it said.
“High-level officials gave orders to ‘round up everyone who should be rounded up’, ‘wipe them out completely … destroy them root and branch’, and ‘break their lineage, break their roots, break their connections and break their origins’,” the report added.
Chinese officials have “likened the mass internment campaign to ‘eradicating tumors’ and even uprooting weeds hidden among crops, which require spraying ‘chemicals to kill them all’.”
China has been widely accused of putting Uyghurs into camps, and there have been reports of the forced sterilization of Uyghur women.
Rights groups, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW), accuse Beijing of oppressing 12 million Uyghurs in China, most of whom are Muslims.
Many Uyghurs – around 1 million to 1.6 million, according to the World Uyghur Congress – have left China to live abroad.
China has repeatedly denied allegations that it is operating detention camps in its northwestern Xinjiang region, home to the Uighur community, claiming instead that it is “re-educating” Uyghurs.