After years of getting tortured for their identity, the overseas representatives of China’s Uighur ethnic group have filed evidence to the International Criminal Court (ICC) demanding a formal investigation of China and its top leaders for human rights violation.
Uighurs, who are mostly Muslim, have had a long history of mistreatment at the hands of Communist China in the Xinjiang province. According to the petition, the crimes “have taken place on a mass scale and should, therefore, all be investigated in order to ascertain whether the alleged perpetrators can be charged and tried.”
The top leaders who have been blamed for the crimes include President Xi Jinping, his predecessor Hu Jintao and several senior Xinjiang province officials and military commanders.
“There is a clear legal pathway to open a case and investigate,” Rodney Dixon, Lond lawyer representing the overseas Uyghur petitioners, was quoted as saying. “This is not symbolic,” he added.
As the Chinese government does not accept the ICC’s jurisdiction, the petitioners argue that in 2018 the ICC had said that it had jurisdiction to probe into the violence against Myanmar’s minority Rohingya community because of crime like deportation of civilians took place in Bangladesh, which is a party to the court.
Similar deportations have taken place in Tajikistan and Cambodia, which are parties to the court, the Uyghur groups said while adding that these countries allowed China to repatriate people who were later murdered, tortured or sterilized.