August 8, 2022

Chinese language President Xi Jinping visited Xinjiang this week, making his first journey in eight years to the once-restive northwestern frontier area the place the US has accused China of genocide towards the largely Muslim Uyghur minority.

From Tuesday to Friday, Xi visited websites in Xinjiang together with a cotton plantation, a commerce zone and a museum, state broadcaster CCTV reported in a 34-minute night newscast on Friday after Xi had left Xinjiang.

America bans cotton imports from Xinjiang over considerations about the usage of compelled labour. China has repeatedly denied any mistreatment of Uyghurs.

A photograph by the official Xinhua information company confirmed a maskless Xi surrounded by smiling and clapping residents, lots of them showing to be Uyghurs carrying ethnic costumes and Muslim prayer caps.

Xi urged Xinjiang officers to take heed to the folks in order to win their hearts and preserve them united. He additionally burdened that safety measures geared toward sustaining social stability ought to grow to be common.

CCTV additionally cited Xi as saying Islamic practices should conform to Chinese language sensibilities and that Xinjiang should groom a workforce of “politically dependable” non secular representatives.

Xinjiang had been the scene of sporadic anti-government and anti-Han Chinese language violence earlier than a crackdown that the United Nations mentioned in 2018 had put a million Uyghurs into “huge internment camps” arrange for political indoctrination.

China initially denied the existence of any camps, then mentioned it had arrange “vocational coaching centres” with dormitories the place folks can “voluntarily” test themselves in to study regulation, Chinese language language and vocational expertise. It mentioned that in 2019 all trainees had “graduated”.

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Xinjiang has not reported any violent assaults because the institution of the centres.

“The purpose of Xi’s Xinjiang journey is to see the outcomes of the insurance policies he has put in place in recent times to stabilise Xinjiang and to conclude that his method and technique for Xinjiang had been profitable,” mentioned Li Mingjiang, affiliate professor on the S. Rajaratnam Faculty of Worldwide Research in Singapore.

The journey marks Xi’s first public look since he visited Hong Kong for the July 1 anniversary marking 25 years of Chinese language rule over the previous British colony, one other territory the place Beijing has dramatically tightened its management following sometimes-violent pro-democracy and anti-China protests in 2019.

Xi’s final reported go to to Xinjiang was in 2014, when he known as for an all-out “battle towards terrorism, infiltration and separatism”, in keeping with leaked papers reported by the New York Instances. Native authorities later stepped up efforts to trace, management and re-educate Uyghurs.

Xi, who has additionally clamped down on the once-restive Tibet Autonomous Area, final yr made the primary go to to the area by a Chinese language chief in three a long time.

Xi is poised to safe a precedent-breaking third management time period later this yr.