China sends Uyghur Muslims to work in factories for global giants
China is now forcing tens of thousands of Uyghur Muslims to work in factories following their “graduation” from so-called re-education camps, which seek to deprive the minority of their cultural and religious identity.
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More than 50,000 Uyghurs will be sent to Shenzhen, the high-tech production center of the country, and 30,000 to Shaoguan to commence their forced labor, reported South China Morning Post (SCMP).
This was a part of the planned job placement program outlined last year for Uyghur Muslims who completed their “reeducation,” but it was disrupted when the coronavirus outbreak rattled the country. Now with the virus somewhat under control, China has resumed its campaign to completely control the minority.
“I heard the first batch of several thousands would arrive soon. We have already received official directives asking us to handle their settlement with care,” a source told the SCMP.
They could earn between $170 to $565 a month, and meals and accommodation will be provided by local authorities, however they are not to leave their dormitories without being granted permission first. Uyghurs labor for global giants
At least 80,000 Uyghurs from Xinjiang camps were shipped off to factories across the country by the Chinese government between 2017 and 2019. They are being forced to work under grueling conditions at factories that supply at least 83 international companies, producing everything from shoes to electronics, according to the a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), a think-tank based on Australia. Forbidden to worship
However, Uyghurs who have been released from re-education camps are still being kept under constant surveillance even outside of working hours.
They are forced to speak Mandarin (Putonghua), which is considered as the “common language” and take ideological training.
Additionally, they are forbidden to perform their religious duties.
China's Xinjiang region is home to around 10 million Uyghurs. The Turkic Muslim group, which makes up around 45% of Xinjiang’s population, has long accused China's authorities of cultural, religious and economic discrimination.
Up to a million people, or about 7% of the Muslim population in Xinjiang, have been incarcerated in an expanding network of "political re-education" camps, according to U.S. officials and UN experts.
After originating in China last December, COVID-19 has spread to at least 187 countries and regions. Europe and the US are currently the worst-hit regions.
So far, 4,633 people in China died after contracting the coronavirus among nearly 82,919 who tested positive, while 78,171 recovered, according to the commission. The pandemic has killed nearly 292,000 people worldwide, with total infections more than 4.26 million, while recoveries surpassed 1.49 million, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.