Canada’s firm stance on the Uyghur issue might irk China


As an additional step to mark the treatment of Uyghurs in Xinjiang region by the Chinese government as ‘genocide’, the Canadian Parliament on Wednesday, 01 Feb, ‘23 passed a unanimous motion which undertakes the resettlement of nearly 10,000 Uyghur refugees in Canada over the next two years, starting 2024. In 2021, Canada became one of the first countries to label China’s treatment of the Uyghurs genocide.

The Canadian Parliament led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau voted in favour of the motion signalling Canada’s stand on the heinous human rights crimes committed by China in the Xinjiang region. At a press conference, Canadian MP Sameer Zuberi, responsible for putting up the motion in the Parliament, commented that the passing of the motion is ‘a clear signal that we do not accept human rights violations against the Uyghur people’.

                                                                                                          Source: mackaycartoons

The motion that passed in the Parliament on Wednesday states that Uyghurs “face pressure and intimidation by the Chinese state to return to China, where they face the serious risk of mass arbitrary detention, mass arbitrary separation of children from their parents, forced sterilization, forced labour, torture and other atrocities”. The bill further accuses Beijing of applying diplomatic and economic pressure on countries such as Turkey, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan where Uyghur inhabitation is high, in order to detain and deport Uyghurs, “leaving them without a safe haven in the world.” The new resolution is a testament to the Canadian government’s new foreign policy that labels China as an ‘increasingly disruptive global power.’

Earlier too, following the report published by the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for human rights Michelle Bachelet, after her visit to Xinjiang holding China accountable for committing serious human-rights violations against Uyghurs region, China

responded with repeated denial of any human rights violation in the region, including forced labour and the existence of re-education camps.

Source: Tibetan Review

Though the Chinese embassy in Canada has not yet responded to the newly passed bill, however in 2021, when Canada’s Ambassador Leslie Norton had commented on the situation in Xinjiang by describing it as ‘ Canada’s deep concern about the human rights situation in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region’, China not only criticised the Canadian government’s stand on human rights issue but further asked Canada to self-introspect on its historical treatment of Indigenous peoples and compensation for victims. Furthermore, Jiang Duan, a senior official at China’s mission to the UN in Geneva also added that “Historically, Canada robbed the Indigenous people of their land, killed them, and eradicated their culture”.

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