Wed, 06 Jul 2022

Beijing [China], May 25 (ANI): Chinese President Xi Jinping has defended his government's record over the abuse of ethenic minorities including Uyghur during a video call with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Wednesday.

The meeting comes after the recent leak of a cache of photos and documents detailing abuses against Uyghur detainment in China's Xinjiang region.

A trove of files obtained by hacking into China's Xinjiang police computers contain first-ever image material from inside camps that "implicates top leadership" and has camp security instructions that describe heavily armed strike units with battlefield assault rifles, according to a Washington-based researcher.

Adrian Zenz, Director and Senior Fellow in China Studies at the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation in Washington, said that the material is unprecedented at several levels.

Xi told Bachelet that China's development of human rights "suits its own national conditions", and that among the various types of human rights, the rights to subsistence and development were primary for developing countries.

"Deviating from reality and copying wholesale the institutional model of other countries will not only fit badly with the local conditions but also bring disastrous consequences," Al Jazeera reported citing Chinese news agency.

Xi also said he opposed the "politicisation" of human rights as he spoke out against alleged foreign interference in his country's domestic affairs.

"Countries do not need patronising lecturers; still less should human rights issues be politicised and used as a tool to apply double standards, or as a pretext to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries," he said.

Xi pointed out that in terms of human rights protection, no one can claim perfection and there is always room for improvement. On the basis of equality and mutual respect, China is ready to actively conduct human rights dialogue and cooperation with all other parties to expand common understanding, reduce differences, promote mutual learning, seek progress together, and jointly advance the international human rights cause for the greater benefit of people across the world, Xinhua News Agency reported.

In January 2022, it is reported that within the Chinese Foreign Ministry that Bachelet would be allowed to visit Xinjiang in the first half of 2022 after the Winter Olympic Games, on the pre-condition that the visit should be "friendly" and not framed as an investigation.

This comes at a time when the US has accused China of genocide in Xinjiang, and an unofficial and independent UK-based tribunal has ruled (9 December 2021) that Beijing is indeed guilty of genocide.

In March 2022, nearly 200 rights groups had demanded that Bachelet's office release its long-postponed report on the rights situation in Xinjiang.

There is a narrative and information war between the West and China on human rights abuses in Xinjiang. Human rights campaigners have accused the Communist Party of China of committing widespread abuses in Xinjiang in the name of security, steps which include confining people to internment camps, forcibly separating families and carrying out forced sterilisations.

For its part, China has said these facilities are "vocational skills training centres" that are necessary to "counter" extremism and improve livelihoods. Chinese officials said in late 2019 that most "trainees" had "graduated" from the centres. (ANI)

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