As China continues to crackdown on the people in the Xinjiang region, two former government officials of the region have been sentenced to death on charges of separatism.
Wang Langtao, the vice president of Xinjiang’s higher people’s court, told reporters on Tuesday that Sattar Sawut and Shirzat Bawudun have been sentenced to death.
Sattar Sawut, a former education official, has been convicted of incorporating ethnic separatism violence, terrorism and religious extremism into Uyghur-language school textbooks.
Shirzat Bawudun, a former head of Xinjiang’s regional justice department, has been convicted of colluding with members of the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which has been listed as a terrorist group by the United Nations, as well as carrying out “illegal religious activities at his daughter’s wedding.”
Across the world, China is facing severe criticism for cracking down on Uyghur Muslims by sending them to mass detention camps, interfering in their religious activities and sending members of the community to undergo some form of forcible re-education or indoctrination.
Beijing, on the other hand, has denied that it is engaged in human rights abuses against the Uyghurs in Xinjiang.
In a 2020 report on Human rights practices, the US Department of State said: “Genocide and crimes against humanity occurred during the year against the predominantly Muslim Uyghurs and other ethnic and religious minority groups in Xinjiang”.