There has been tension over the years between the Uighurs and the China state. Uighurs are a community of Muslims who settle in detention camps in Xinjiang. Xinjiang is under the control of China, and due to its rich soil and minerals, it is the largest producer of natural gas in China.
Uighurs are a minority group, and they claim that they are being detained, interrogated and beaten because of their religion. But the question is, why are they targeted? China claims that they hold extremist views and that they claimed responsibility for the attacks that took place in 2013 and 2014. China says that they are a threat to security.
In 2017 mosques were abolished in Xinjiang, women were prohibited from wearing veils and men were also banned from growing long beards. China has attempted to erase the population of Muslims in Xinjiang by implicating measures such as forced sterilization, separation from families and killing newborn babies and banning the holy month of fasting, Ramadhan.
Even with such claims over China, countries that criticize Israel, US and Myanmar over their actions against Muslims have been silent over China’s treatment of the Uighurs. Muslim leaders, Muslim states and organizations of Islamic Cooperation have avoided confronting China over the abuses.
Reason being China is supporting them with funds and helping them in infrastructure and even signed letters accepting China’s behaviour over the Uighurs. But other countries such as Malaysia have been making efforts to protect the Uighurs and slowly the public has been made aware of the abuse and torture that has been happening in Xinjiang.
Most Muslim states were not aware of this behaviour up until two years ago, that is why no action has been taken over the minority group. After the wide coverage on Aljazeera and other stations, Muslim leaders have joined in supporting the Uyghur Human Rights group, and politicians have begun to speak out.
Evidence of cultural genocide is overwhelming, and with the awareness making China an anti-Muslim nation. The Chinese government will feel provoked, and in its combative character will be compelled to react, which may worsen the situation.