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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, August 14, 2004

Guantanamo Uygurs Not Going "Home"

Detainees in Guantanamo BayUnited States Secretary of State Colin Powell has confirmed earlier reports that the 22 Uygurs held at Guantanamo Bay will not be repatriated to China upon their imminent release.

The decision is believed to be based on an expectation on behalf of State, though not stated, that the Uygurs will face imprisonment torture and possibly execution upon their return to China.

The detainees, members of a Muslim ethnic minority group from Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in China's northwest are believed to have been detained in Afghanistan and Pakistan but have apparently been cleared of any terrorist connections thus their coming release.

The Uygurs have been interviewed by Chinese officials whilst in custody and there were claims that America allowed the Chinese to subject them to threats, sleep deprivation and "environmental manipulation", over several days of their "interviews". These claims were emphatically denied by American and Chinese officials.

As yet there has been no Chinese response to Powell's statement but it is not considered that Beijing will take kindly to the implications of the decision by the United States

The Chinese government wages an almost obsessive campaign against the Uygur and what they call the "three evils": Separatism, religious extremism and terrorism all of which they claim the Uygur are guilty of despite scant proof being offered.

The Daily Telegraph US won't send home Chinese Muslims