'Crimes of genocide': Uyghurs in Turkey target Chinese officials by filing a criminal case

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Jan 07, 2022, 11:37 PM(IST)

Uyghurs in Turkey target Chinese officials by filing a criminal case Photograph:( Twitter )

Story highlights

As per estimated by several UN experts and rights groups, more than a million people, mainly Uyghurs and members of other muslim minorities, have been detained in recent years

In an attempt to seek justice, 19 Uyghurs living in Turkey have filed a criminal complaint with a Turkish prosecutor against Chinese officials. The community has accused them of committing genocide, torture, rape and crimes against humanity. 
Gulden Sonmez, the lawyer representing the Uyghurs, is now building a case based on witness statements, photographs, videos, documents, and reports. The complaint was filed on Tuesday with the Istanbul chief prosecutor’s office.

In a report by Middle East Eye, Sonmez said, "In the criminal case, the crimes of genocide, torture and rape were covered extensively in evidence. Incidents of rape and systematic sexual assault in the concentration camps were identified in the testimonies and forensic medical examinations of witnesses who had somehow escaped from the camps recently."

As per estimated by several UN experts and rights groups, more than a million people, mainly Uyghurs and members of other muslim minorities, have been detained in recent years in a vast system of camps in China's far western region of Xinjiang.

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Some foreign lawmakers and parliaments have labelled the treatment of Uyghurs as genocide, citing evidence of forced sterilisations and deaths inside the camps. 

China denies this, saying Uyghur population growth exceeds the national average.

Meanwhile, earlier in December, the US blacklisted Chinese biotech firms for trying to seek surveillance on the Uyghur minority.

According to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, "The scientific pursuit of biotechnology and medical innovation can save lives. Unfortunately, the PRC is choosing to use these technologies to pursue control over its people and its repression of members of ethnic and religious minority groups."

(With inputs from agencies)

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