US Sanctions Four Chinese Officials Over Human Rights Abuses in Xinjiang

WASHINGTON—The United States imposed sanctions on Chinese officials on July 9, including a member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)s powerful Politburo, accusing them of serious human rights abuses against Uyghur Muslim minorities, a move likely to further ratchet up tensions between Washington and Beijing.

The Trump administration targeted the Xinjiang regions Party Secretary Chen Quanguo, who became the highest-ranking Chinese official to be hit with U.S. sanctions, and the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau (akin to police force). The move comes amid already-high tensions between Washington and Beijing over Chinas handling of the coronavirus pandemic and its tightened grip on Hong Kong.

“The United States calls upon the world to stand against the CCPs acts against its own minority communities in Xinjiang, including mass arbitrary detention, forced labor, religious persecution, and forced birth control, and sterilization,” a White House official said.

The United Nations estimates that more than a million Uyghur Muslims have been detained in internment camps in the Xinjiang region. Survivors of the internment camps said they experienced torture, rape, and political indoctrination while detained. Uyghur detainees were pressured to suppress their native culture and language, and forced to denounce their faith and pledge loyalty to the CCP.

The sanctions are imposed under the Global Magnitsky Act, a federal law that allows the U.S. government to target human rights violators around the world with freezes on any U.S. assets, U.S. travel bans, and prohibitions on Americans doing business with them.

The Chinese Embassy in Washington didnt immediately respond to a request for comment.

China has continually denied mistreatment of the minority group and claims the camps provide vocational training and are needed to fight extremism.

The CCP has used the excuse of potential “extremist threats” to justify its strict surveillance of Uyghurs and other Muslim minority groups in the Xinjiang region.

Police patrolling as Muslims leave the Id Kah Mosque after the morning prayer on Eid al-Fitr in Kashgar, Xinjiang, China, on June 26, 2017. (Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images)

The sanctions were imposed on: Chen, a member of Chinas powerful Politburo, a 25-member body of the Partys top officials; Zhu Hailun, a former deputy Party secretary of the region; Wang Mingshan, the director and Party secretary of the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau; and former Party secretary of the bureau Huo Liujun.

Epoch Times Photo
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a news conference at the State Department, in Washington, on July 1, 2020. (Manuel Balce/Pool/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement said he was also imposing further visa restrictions on Chen, Zhu, and Wang, barring them and theirRead More From Source

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