Uyghur diaspora searches for family members detained in China in recent months

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February 03, 2023
Uyghur diaspora searches for family members detained in China in recent months

WASHINGTON – According to Kewser Wayit, a 26-year-old Uyghur mechanical engineer who has lived in the United States since 2013, after he posted a video on YouTube in 2019 asking the Chinese government to allow him to After the exchange, he was contacted by a Chinese security official in Xinjiang. “Last year, a guy added me on WeChat, introduced himself as a Chinese security official, and asked me to talk to my parents a few times through his WeChat,” Vaiti told VOA.

In recent years, some countries, including the United States, have accused China of committing genocide in Xinjiang, arbitrarily detaining more than one million Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim groups in internment camps, forced labor, forced sterilization of women, and forcing Uyghur women to marry Wait for the Han people. China denies the accusations are lies, saying that Xinjiang is safe and stable with good momentum of development.

“At present, Xinjiang’s society is safe and stable, development continues to improve, people live and work in peace and contentment, and the human rights protection level of people of all ethnic groups is constantly improving,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Mao Ning told reporters at a news conference in Beijing on Thursday.

According to Wayit, although he cannot call his family in China at will, he can keep track of them through the last ten WeChat messages of his 19-year-old sister Kamile Wayit, who is attending college in Henan province. safety. “My sister deleted me from her WeChat contact list. Although I couldn’t communicate with her directly on WeChat, I was still able to see her last 10 posts on social media,” Vaiti said.

According to Vaiti, since December 12, 2022, Vaiti’s younger sister stopped sending WeChat messages, and then he contacted some friends, and even called the police station where his family was located to confirm that his sister died in 2022. She was arrested by Chinese police on Dec. 12, 2010, for allegedly sharing a video on her WeChat account about the white paper protests in China. After a deadly fire broke out in an apartment building in Urumqi in late November, the Chinese public held up blank papers to protest China’s zero-zero policy.

“I was shocked to learn that my 19-year-old sister, Camille Vajti, was recently detained by Chinese authorities while she was home for winter vacation,” Vajti said in an interview with VOA. “I demand that the Chinese authorities release her immediately and allow her to speak to me. “His cousin, a 23-year-old sophomore at Shanghai Jiaotong University, was also arrested when he returned from Shanghai to Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, last summer, according to Vajti.

“I also learned that my cousin Zurpikar Kudret was also arrested when he returned to Urumqi from Shanghai last summer,” Vait told VOA. “I also heard that he could get five or seven years in prison for allegedly using Western social media apps on his phone when he was in high school.”

Vaiti is not the only Uyghur whose family members have been detained by Chinese authorities in Xinjiang in recent months. According to bus driver Munawar Sadir, 49, and assistant nurse Saidin Sadir, 40, who live in Sweden, their brother Baihetiyar Sadir Behtiyar Sadir, a 47-year-old businessman and nutritionist, was detained by Chinese police in Urumqi last October.

Uyghur diaspora searches for family members detained in China in recent months

Uyghur diaspora searches for family members detained in China in recent months

Saidingjan Sadir told VOA: “Recently we learned and confirmed that my brother Baikhtiyar Sadir was detained by Chinese police in Urumqi last October.” According to Saidinjan Sadir, whose older brother Baikhtiyar Sadir lost a hand in an incident as a child, China began using the pretext of fighting terrorism in Xinjiang as early as 2017, Arbitrarily detaining Uyghurs and other Muslim-majority groups, his older brother severed all ties with his siblings in Sweden.

“Even though he deleted me from his contact list, I only know of his existence through the last 10 posts on his WeChat account,” Saidinjan Sadir told VOA. “My brother stopped posting on his social media on October 13, 2022.” Weeks later, Saidingjan Sadir said he contacted friends in Urumqi and learned that his brother had been arrested by Chinese police at his home in Urumqi last October.

“I called the police officer in charge of my brother’s neighborhood,” Saedinjan Sadir told VOA. “The police did not deny my brother’s arrest. When I asked about my brother’s whereabouts and why he was arrested, he asked me to go to his police station for details and hung up.” When their father died in Urumqi in 2021, they couldn’t even speak on the phone with her younger brother, Baikhtiyar Sadir, Minawar Sadir said.

“My dad passed away in November 2021. At that time, I was crying here. I called my younger brother in China. He hung up immediately, and hung up that call,” Minaval told VOA. “He didn’t dare to answer my phone, because we also knew that the suppression of the Uyghurs in China in 1967 was too much.”

Minawar Sadir said they want the Chinese Communist Party to release his brother immediately.

“My brother and I can’t accept this kind of slander for no reason, so I said the Chinese Communist Party, don’t go too far, don’t go too far, you know,” Munawar told VOA. “Now we ask you (you) to let him come out in good health and live his life, and we don’t ask you anything. Since he is a Chinese citizen, you should treat him fairly.”


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