Arrestati 6 uiguri. La Cina li accusa di terrorismo

L’Associazione Americana Uiguri (UAA) suggerisce alla comunita’ internazionale di vedere con estremo scetticismo le teorie che attribuiscono collegamenti con fazioni terroristiche ai sei sospettati arrestati in Aksu, Est Turketan. Il 16 settembre, l’Agenzia di stampa Xinhua News, ha riportato il fermo di sei persone in Aksu con l’accusa di programmare un attentato terroristico. Le sei persone sono tutte uiguri. 

Segue il comunicato dell’Associazione Americana Uiguri

The Uyghur American Association (UAA) urges the international community to view with extreme skepticism terror allegations made against six suspects in Aksu, East Turkestan.

On September 16, 2009, Xinhua News Agency issued a report[1] detailing the arrest of six suspects in Aksu, alleged to be part of a “terror gang” plotting to carry out terror attacks. Xinhua stated that the “ringleaders” of the gang, now in custody, are Seyitamut Obul and Tasin Mehmut, indicating that the suspects are Uyghurs. The report added that police had seized “materials and tools to make explosives” and that the suspects “had made more than 20 explosive devices in three places in the suburbs of Aksu after the July 5 riot”.

Details on the arrests offered by the local police and the official Chinese media have been scant. No specifics have been made public as to when the suspects were arrested, where they are being held or what kinds of material have been seized. An Associated Press journalist attempted to call regional police headquarters to clarify details on the arrests, but the calls remained unanswered[2]. For these reasons, UAA reminds the Western media that the Chinese government/s statements and claims should not be taken as facts.

In a statement Uyghur democracy leader, Ms. Rebiya Kadeer said: “Once again Uyghurs have been accused of plotting terror without substantial evidence from Chinese  authorities. The world must remain vigilant against the scourge of terrorism. It must also be wary of regimes with poor human rights records using terror allegations to intensify state-sponsored repression. Details on these six arrests should be made public. If they are not, the international community should seek clarification. Otherwise, the systemic repression of the Uyghur people by the Chinese government will go on unabated simply on the basis of flimsy evidence.”

UAA believes that the arrests follow a pattern commonly used by Chinese authorities to justify crackdowns on Uyghurs before sensitive anniversaries and events, in which security concerns are amplified with unsubstantiated and little documented terror allegations against Uyghurs.

On October 1, 2009, the Chinese Communist Party will mark its 60th year in power. UAA asserts that Chinese authorities are utilizing the terror allegations against the six suspects to prolong a fierce crackdown on Uyghurs, which was initially prompted by unrest in East Turkestan/s regional capital, Urumchi, in July, 2009. In the build up to October 1, 130,000 additional Chinese troops have been mobilized to East Turkestan.

UAA urges Chinese authorities to guarantee the safety of all of East Turkestan/s residents; however, UAA believes that in the run up to October 1 Chinese authorities are demonizing Uyghurs in the region in a bid to hold Uyghurs responsible for the ongoing instability and to validate state repression.

Since the unrest in July, 2009, Chinese authorities have used a series of incidents to label Uyghurs as the cause of instability in East Turkestan. One prominent incident surrounds a series of alleged syringe stabbings, which Chinese authorities have blamed on Uyghur separatists and labeled as “terror attacks”. The terror attack allegation was made despite official claims that syringes contained non-toxic materia. Seven Uyghurs have so far been sentenced by Chinese authorities for the stabbings &. The swift criminal and judicial procedures in this case came as Chinese officials in Urumchi were put under pressure by Han Chinese demonstrators in Urumchi, who had expressed anger over a perceived delay in the handing out of punishment against Uyghur detainees held in relation to the July, 2009 unrest.

UAA believes that state demonization of the Uyghur people will only push further away the prospect of genuine dialogue between Han Chinese and Uyghurs.

The Chinese government/s pattern of demonizing Uyghurs prior to sensitive events to justify crackdowns also occurred in the period leading up to the Beijing Olympic Games in August, 2008.

In the first half of 2008, the Chinese government issued a series of specific Olympics-related terrorism claims, without providing evidence to support its accusations. These included an alleged plot by a young Uyghur woman to blow up or crash an airplane on its way to Beijing on March 7, 2008 and the arrest of some 45 people in April, 2008 on suspicion of planning to kidnap athletes and carry out suicide bomb attacks to sabotage the Olympics.

East Turkestan witnessed a crackdown on Uyghurs as the Olympic torch relay passed through Urumchi and Kashgar in June, 2008. Thousands of Uyghurs were detained in the months leading up to the torch/s arrival in East Turkestan, and residents of buildings on torch relay routes in Urumchi and Kashgar were warned to stay inside their buildings with their windows shuttered[9].

UAA urges caution on the part of governments worldwide regarding accusations of Uyghur terrorism, and asks that they independently verify Chinese terror allegations. UAA encourages impartial investigations into allegations of Uyghur terror and of the existence of organized Uyghur terror groups.

Uyghur Human Rights Project
Uyghur American Association
1701 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W. Suite 300
Washington, D.C.  20006


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