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China Letter-News and Human Rights

China human rights news with focus on the Uygur of Xinjiang, Tibetans and Tibet, Chinese mining workers, religion, corruption and censorship.

Saturday, March 27, 2004

Only Separatists speak Uygur...

Uygur language restrictions I have to post this photo which is appearing over at the Uyghur Information Agency (an Uygur Diaspora news and current affairs site-see link in menu).

It is in protest at a recent report that the Chinese government are stopping Uygur language tuition in 50 rural schools in Xinjiang. It also refers to the general pressures on and discrimination against the Uygurs over the use of their language.

The caption says "From today you all speak, write and read in Chinese. Only Separatists speak Uygur" The mouth gags have Uygur script on them.

Do you notice that only one girl is wearing the traditional head covering of Islam? Despite Chinese claims of Uygur Islamic extremism and Islamic terrorism the Uygur ,whilst being devout Muslims, practice a much more liberal view of Islam unlike the Muslims of Arab extraction. Also, unlike the Arabs, the Uygurs have a great liking for the West and America in particular, traditionally looking in that direction for assistance and support rather than to the middle east.

A little trivia. Do you now the Uygur script was adopted by Ghengiz Khan as the first written script of the Mongol Empire. In those days the Uygur were respected widely as a people of learning and high culture. The Mongols, who nominally ruled the Uygurs for a period, used the Uygurs expertise extensively in law making, governance and diplomacy.