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What should be the USA’s stand on the Chinese human rights abuses, Uyghur in particular, in the light of trade war between China and the United States? Rumors are abuzz about possible compromises between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping during the trade talks. But will that change the USA’s outlook on Chinese human rights abuses or putting sanction on the mastermind of Uyghur crisis?

No, it shouldn’t, as the entire world, barring few Islamic countries Pakistan being one of them, is against the atrocities and repressive measures against the Muslim minorities in Xinjiang province. What Beijing has done & has been doing in Tibet, the same or maybe worse is being done to Uyghur on the name of Re-education. Husbands have been arrested and lodged in the internment camps which are more than a wartime concentration camp. Young children have been forcibly separated from their parents and being brainwashed as Xi Jinping believes in catching them young. It is confirmed that more than one million Uighur have been lodged into the camps. What is happening to them is anybody’s guess but the supply of human organs to various Chinese hospitals from these camps is one of the chilling truths.


So, the excesses against the Uyghur Muslims must count as the most scandalous human rights atrocity of present time, masterminded by Chen Quanguo, perhaps second only to the mass slaughter of Syrians by strongman President Bashar al-Assad.


Who is Chen Quanguo?

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Who is Chen Quanguo, considered to be the architect of China’s re-education centers? Also known as the man behind Beijing’s Securitization Strategy in Tibet and Xinjiang, he was born into a poor family in rural Henan province but he worked his way up the CCP ladder pretty fast. Before becoming Party Secretary of neighboring Hebei province, he first served under Premier Li Keqiang in his native Henan.

In 2011, he was handed the difficult task of ruling the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR), which had once again erupted into violence in 2008. In his five years stint in Tibet, he ensured stability through a very sophisticated network of surveillance and control. Impressed with his achievement he was transferred to the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region  (XUAR) in August 2016 and without any delay he rolled out the same securitization strategy, accomplishing in a single year what took him five years in the TAR. Thus came up the concept of Internment Camps otherwise called as Re-Education Centres.

Global Magnitsky Sanctions

United State’s muffled objections against China seem to be louder than most of the Muslim majority nations, yet there is a feeling that it is not loud enough. Is it owing to Washington’s long-standing and bipartisan policy of hedging, given China’s growing economic, political and military power? That sounds logical. But in the same breath Washington is capable of acting against the architect without challenging Beijing directly. So is this person a right candidate for Global Magnitsky sanctions? The world feels yes and considers a step in the right direction.

Named after the Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who was murdered while in prison, the Sergei Magnitsky Act became law in 2012 which could impose sanctions on individuals, in Russia, accused of various crimes. Any gross violations of internationally recognized human rights committed against individuals seeking to expose illegal activity carried out by officials of the Government of the Russian Federation also covered under its purview.

US Congress, having realized that the law had a tool to combat human rights abuses by other governments, passed the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act in 2016. The Trump administration through this act could implicate any person around the world “responsible for or complicit in, or to have directly or indirectly engaged in, serious human rights abuse.” Since then, the United States has imposed Global Magnitsky sanctions on more than 100 people from various countries.  The measure makes enough noise to rattle the country engaged in human rights abuses.

Efficacy of the Law

Some of the landmark sanctions by the Trump administration have been the sanctions to punish Turkish officials for their unlawful detention of Pastor Andrew Brunson for almost two years and action against the 17 Saudis for the murder of Post contributing columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

So, it will not be incorrect to say that Chen Quanguo is the perfect candidate for Global Magnitsky sanctions and it must be exercised to restrain Beijing’s hawkish and repressive approach, the latest being in Hong Kong.

Chen, on the name of securitization of the region, has not only resorted to Internment camps, the arrest of male Uyghur, separation of the young children from their parents but also has invaded the personal life of the public. And this has been ensured by erecting almost 7500, so-called Convenience Police Stations, all across the province.

09 Jul 19/Tuesday                                                   Written by Azadazraq

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