Should the U.S. Sanction Chinese Officials Over Muslim Internment?
Do you support sanctions over China's human rights abuses?
by Countable | 8.6.19
What’s the story?
- Vice President Mike Pence has signaled that the Trump administration is open to sanctioning Chinese officials over the nation’s internment of Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim ethnic minorities.
- Bob Fu of ChinaAid, a Christian nonprofit, told Axios that Pence is considering using the Global Magnitsky Act to sanction top officials in Xinjiang, where Chinese authorities are holding more than 1 million Uyghur Muslims in “political re-education” internment camps.
- The crackdown on Uyghurs extends beyond re-education camps. Xinjiang officials are collecting Muslim residents’ DNA and passports, restricting movement, and implementing political and cultural indoctrination in schools.
- Last month, Pence spoke about the situation during the State Department’s Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom event:
“In Xinjiang, the Communist Party has imprisoned more than a million Chinese Muslims, including Uyghurs, in internment camps, where they endure around-the-clock brainwashing. … whatever comes of our negotiations with Beijing, you can be assured the American people will stand in solidarity with the people of all faiths in the People’s Republic of China,” Pence said according to Nikkei Asian Review.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers in both chambers of Congress is looking to ramp up the U.S. diplomatic response to the Chinese government’s mass detainment of Uyghurs:
- The Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2019, which passed the Senate in May, would require federal agencies to gather information and produce reports about the persecution, and consider imposing sanctions on relevant persons or entities under the Magnitsky Act and the Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act. The bill would also encourage the U.S. to use diplomatic tools to condemn China’s behavior and demand closure of the reeducation camps.
- The UIGHAR Act contains provisions similar to those described above, but would also block the export of technology that could be used to further surveillance or detention activities in Xinjiang.
What do you think?
Should the U.S. impose sanctions over China's human rights abuses? Should Congress should pass bills aimed at ending China's crackdown in Xinjiang? Take action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.
(Photo Credit: Radio Free Asia)
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