UN negotiating with China for unrestricted Xinjiang visit: Secretary General

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Mar 28, 2021, 11:21 PM(IST)

UN chief Antonio Guterres  Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Guterres said the Chinese had repeatedly affirmed to him "that they want that mission to take place."

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Sunday that the UN was in negotiation with China for a visit "without restrictions" to Xinjiang in order to see how Uyghur Muslims were being treated. He declared this in an interview broadcast.

At least one million Uyghurs and people from other mostly Muslim groups have been held in camps in the northwestern region, according to US and Australian rights groups, which accuse Chinese authorities of forcibly sterilizing women and imposing forced labor.

"A serious negotiation is at the present moment taking place between the Office of the (UN Human Rights) Commissioner and the Chinese authorities," Guterres told Canada's CBC television network.

"I hope that they will reach an agreement soon" to allow a visit "without restrictions or limitations," he added.

Guterres said the Chinese had repeatedly affirmed to him "that they want that mission to take place."

Guterres said he was also following "with concern" the fate of two Canadians, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, who are being held prisoner in China on charges of espionage.

(With AFP inputs)

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