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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 14th June 2019 > CHINA’S HUMAN RIGHTS CRISIS

CHINA’S HUMAN RIGHTS CRISIS

The oppression of the country’s Uyghur community is getting worse. Will the U.S. Congress come to the RESCUE?
KEVIN FRAYER/GETTY
FEAST OF THE SACRIFICE* A Uyghur man stands in his doorway in Turpan, China, during the worldwide celebration of the *Eid-al-Adha. Uyghurs are subject to restrictions by China’s Communist Party during such religious celebrations.
JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/GETTY

AT LEAST 1 MILLION PEOPLE ARE languishing in what the U.S. military has called “concentration camps” in China. But recent attempts by U.S. oficials and lawmakers to push for change have made little difference as the human rights crisis continues to worsen.

In Congress’ strongest move yet, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee recently passed the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act, which would require the creation of a report and a position within the State Department focused on China’s crackdown. The bill, which also says President Donald Trump should condemn the abuses, will now head to the Senate loor.

“It is long overdue to hold Chinese government and Communist Party oficials accountable for systemic and egregious human rights abuses,” the bill’s sponsor Florida Senator Marco Rubio said.

The bill’s progression comes weeks after the Pentagon said it estimates that between 1 to 3 million Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim minorities have been held in “concentration camps,” one of the first times a U.S. oficial has used the term usually associated with the Holocaust. The label comes three years after China, in a bid to stamp out religious inluence in the northwest region of Xinjiang, began arbitrarily placing Uyghurs in detention and building what has become an inescapable surveillance state.

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China Human Rights Crisis The oppression of the country’s Uyghur community is getting worse by the day. Will the U.S. Congress ever come to the rescue?