China’s Covid-19 lockdown measures and notorious zero-Covid policies have caused difficulties across the country. The most severe impact has been reported among the Uighur population in the Xinjiang region.
According to reports, as many as 22 people starved to death in the region on one of the days last week. The deaths were reported in the northern Xinjiang city of Ghulja, where harsh Covid lockdown policies have been in place for months. Radio Free Asia informed. Aside from starvation, lack of medical attention has also been cited as one of the causes of deaths.
The report says that RFA Uyghur verified with city officials reports of deaths and starvation that surfaced on social media. City officials and the Ghulja police confirmed that there were at least 22 deaths in a single day on September 15.
The report says: “When asked how many people had starved to death in the city on Thursday last week, a Ghulja municipal told RFA “20”, but refused to reveal more information about where in the city. deaths occurred. “There are 20 people who have died of starvation. Don’t call again.” Another official, from the Ghulja City Municipal Emergency Response Station, gave RFA a death toll of 22, but declined to release more information. A third official, from the Ghulja City Command Center, Ghulja City Police rejected social media accounts that as many as 100 had died that day, putting the number of victims at “around 21 and 22”.
Ghulja is a big city where half a million Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims live. In early August, harsh lockdown measures were applied in the city.
One of the people who died was the president of a village in Ghulj. “They killed my husband, Halmutar Ömerjan, the chairman of Kepekyuzi. No one answered my phone calls,” the man’s widow said, according to the report.
The woman said her husband had been quarantined for seven days before being moved to an “uninhabitable” location and left alone there.
Of nearly 10 million Uyghur Muslims in the region, nearly two million are in various forms of imprisonment, mostly held in a vast network of internment camps where Muslims are forced to undergo cultural transformation.
China says that the Turkic-speaking natives of the Xinjiang region support terrorism and secessionism. Knife attacks by Uyghur rebels were a common feature in recent years, until Beijing tightened its grip on the region after Xi Jinping became president.
In 2014, before the internment camps became a reality, China’s State Internet Information Office (SIIO) had said that Uyghur rebels were spreading terrorist videos and literature supporting jihad in China. the entire region. “Terrorist video and audio products have become a major instigator of the high incidence of terrorist activities today,” SIIO said.
Source : www.ibtimes.sg