The 54th Press Conference of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing
2021/09/20

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Bi Haibo: Good afternoon, friends from press. Welcome to the 54th press conference on Xinjiang-related issues held by Xinjijang Uygur Autonomous Region. Today, we’ll focus on the so-called “Uygurs Tribunal” schemed by external anti-China forces. We are going to lodge our solemn representations and issue authoritative information. Specific arrangements are made for today’s conference. We will have online communication with China’s Ambassador to the UK--Zheng Zeguang through the whole conference. Meanwhile, we’ve also invited British human rights lawyer and international arbitrator Graham Perry to join with us online.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Bi Haibo, Counselor of the Information Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, presided over the press conference at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

First of all, let’s welcome the spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region--Xu Guixiang to give us detailed information.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Xu Guixiang, spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region answers questions at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Xu Guixiang: Good afternoon, dear journalists. I’m going to introduce all the attendees from home at today’s press conference. They are: spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Mr. Elijan Anayat; Associate researcher of China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, Jia Chunyang; Distinguished Professor of Zhejiang Normal University and Invited researcher of Center for Human Rights Research, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Wang Jiang; President of the Islamic Association of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and President of Xinjiang Islamic Institute, Abudurekefu Tumuniyaz; Director of the Legal Working Committee of the Standing Committee of the People’s Congress of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Li Juan; Associate researcher of Religious Research Institute of Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences, Ren Hong; Doctor of the Institute of Rural Development of Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences, Osman Omur; Vice-President of Xinjiang Legal Society, Anwar Siyit; Professor of Xinjiang University, Marhaba Aolan; Associate professor of School of Politics and Law of Xinjiang Normal University, Hoshur.

Next, I’m going to make some remarks on the contents of today’s conference.

We held a press conference on Xinjiang-related issues on May 25, 2021. At the conference, we revealed the inside story of the so-called “Uygur Tribunal”. If we look at it from the organizer of the “tribunal”, it is co-organized by western anti-China forces led by the US and “East Turkistan” organizations represented by the “World Uygur Congress”. To view it from legal basis, the so-called “tribunal” doesn’t conform to international laws and international criminal justice practice. There is no basis for and efficacy of international law, and they have no right to hold any “hearings”, let alone their attempts to identify an extremely serious international crime. To look at it from the source of funds, the “tribunal” is funded by the pounds provided mainly by the “World Uygur Congress”. From its operation, the so-called “tribunal” has its presupposition of “presumption of guilt”, and then to falsify evidence, draw a group of anti-Chinese scholars, lawyers, a gang of habitual liars to support their allegation in order to deceive people. To see it from its purpose, the “tribunal” is set to disgrace Xinjiang and meddle with Xinjiang’s affairs and interfere in China’s internal affair. That being said, the “tribunal” has no credibility at all but a pawn controlled by the U.S. and Western anti-China forces in their political manipulation.

Multiple facts have proven that the so-called “tribunal” is not judicial organization at all and the “hearings” are not legal procedures. They are in essence absurd “illegal organizations” full of hypocrisy. However, neither do they feel ashamed of it and nor correct their wrong doings. On the contrary, they are determined on the wrong road and continue their provocations. In recent days, they have drawn together a group of so-called “experts and scholar” to carry out the so-called “hearing” in pretentious manner, and will perform a “show of lies” to deceive the world, which will surely offer more jokes to the international community.

Firstly, let’s look at the witnesses and evidence of the so-called “hearing”. It goes without doubt that what they try to testify are groundless talks such as “suppressing ethnic minorities” “concentration camps for ethnic minorities” “large-scale surveillance on ethnic minorities” “forced labor” “Muslim persecution” “forced sterilization” and “inter-generational separation” and so on. They attempt to accuse Xinjiang of “genocide” through the “tribunal”, which showed their devious intentions. The people they have pooled together to support their lies are all fake scholars with ulterior motives. Many of them have never been to Xinjiang and neither do they know the real facts about Xinjiang. What they are doing is making judgement on the affairs of Xinjiang by hearsay and sheer imagination. More egregiously, these people are wantonly discrediting China because of their ulterior political motives. They reached conclusions from the so-called “leaked files” “personal experiences” “research reports” “satellite images”. These “proofs” are bluffing, mismatched through man-made connection which cannot withstand the test of logic. They can’t be called “evidence” at all. Built on these “evidence”, the so-called “hearing” has no credibility in it. They can only offer a “farce”to be amused by the world.

But what they fear and what they avoid to talk about is the fact that Xinjiang enjoys a stable development. After the counter-terrorism and de-radicalization campaign carried out in accordance with law, Xinjiang has eradicated the roots of violent terrorism. Where do they see the “suppressed ethnic minorities?” The vocational education and training centers have made solid achievement with trainees living a happy life. Where are the “concentration camps?” Who are “removed of their liver, kidney and uterus?” People of ethnic minorities are united even closer like pomegranate seeds. Where is the “confrontation between different ethnicity?” Xinjiang’s religious affairs are carried out smoothly and are protected by law. Where does “Muslim persecution and violent demolition of mosques” exist? Cultures of ethnic minorities are inherited and developing amid the Chinese culture. Where can you see the “extinction of ethnic minority culture”? People of ethnic groups have built their happy life with their own hands and found their way to earn their well off life. Where is the “forced labor”? Population in Xinjiang has been increasing steadily including the Uygur population. And people there are marching towards a wealthier life. Where does the so-called “genocide” exist? The so-called “witnesses” of the “Uygur tribunal”, do you dare to face the reality? Do you have conscience? Can you answer such serious questions?

What needs to be pointed out is that history is the most powerful judge and that facts are the most convincing proof. What really should be on the defendant seats are those evil forces that harm innocent people, make trouble in Xinjiang and do all the evil things. They take advantage of the innocence of those believing in religion and widely spread extremist thoughts in the guise of religion. In doing so, they have misled and deceived lots of innocent people and turned them into monsters that murder people in cold blood. These people have become the scapegoat of the “three forces” who have brought unbearable pain to their families. The crimes they have committed, evil things they have done and the debts they owned are destined to be weighed by justice and will get their due punishment. The so-called “tribunal” has no justice in it at all. It colludes with the “three forces”, becoming the tool of their political manipulation.

Today’s press conference on Xinjiang-related issues is going to comb the lies and fallacies made by western anti-China forces and disclose the “fake testimony” they have deliberately fabricated to show the power of justice and conscience and let the international community know the ugly nature of the so-called “Uygur tribunal”.

Bi Haibo: Thanks for the introduction of Mr. Xu Guixiang. Next, let’s welcome Ambassador Zheng Zeguang to make his speech.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Zheng Zeguang, Chinese Ambassador to the UK speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Zheng Zeguang: Just now, Mr. Xu Guixiang introduced us the background of today’s conference from the perspectives of facts and legality and disclosed the inside story of the so-called “Uygur Tribunal”. This “special tribunal” is in fact a farce created by certain anti-China forces. I’m going to present my speech from the following points.

Firstly, Uygur people are members of the big Chinese family. Chinese government have showed more concerns about Xinjiang’s development and local people’s well-being more than any other people. As President Xi Jinping pointed out, all the Chinese people including ethnic minorities are sisters and brothers of one family and should unite together like pomegranate seeds and help each other. No ethnic group should be left behind and all should enjoy comprehensive development. Xinjiang has been firmly implementing the relevant policies of the Chinese government and will continue to promote economic development, ethnic unity and social progress to enhance the living standards of the people of Xinjiang, including the Uygur people, so that they can live a happy life.

Secondly, the Xinjiang-related issues are not human rights issues, nor ethnicity issues, but issues of counter-terrorism, anti-separatism and anti-extremism. The vocational education and training centers in Xinjiang are absolutely not “concentration camps”, but preventative counter-terrorism and de-radicalisation measures. In nature, they are no different from the Desistance and Disengagement Programme (DDP) of the UK or the de-radicalization centers in France. The allegation of “genocide” is even more absurd. In the past 40 years, the population of Uygurs in Xinjiang has increased from 5.55 million to more than 11 million. Life expectancy of Uygurs has risen from 30 to 72 in the past 40 years. These evidences show that there is no so-called “genocide” in Xinjiang.

In the meantime, remarkable achievements have been made in the economic and social development in Xinjiang, and thus government policies have won the wholehearted support of the people of all ethnic groups in the region, including the Uygurs. In the past 40 plus years, average disposable income of the Xinjiang residents has been growing at an annual rate of over 12%. In the past two years, Xinjiang’s GDP growth rate had been 6.5%, and in the first half of this year, Xinjiang’s GDP reached 732.86 billion RMB yuan. Before coming to the UK, I had the pleasure of visiting Xinjiang, and I was impressed by the beautiful city and the smiles on the faces of the local people. “Xinjiang is a wonderful place”. Now it is the best time in the history of Xinjiang.

The third point I want to make is that the so-called “Uygur Tribunal” is in nature a political manipulation aimed at discrediting China. It is a non-governmental entity funded by anti-China forces. It is a “fake tribunal” and has no legal basis or validity whatsoever. Its so-called “evidence” is nothing but sheer lies and disinformation. Its so-called “experts” are rumour mongers who have long been engaged in slandering China. And the so-called “witnesses” the organizers have pooled together are merely actors and actresses who have been making up the so-called “persecution” that never happened at all. The organization has been designed to tarnish the image of China, mislead the public here, spoil the goodwill between the Chinese people and the British people and disrupt the smooth development of the China-UK relationship. We are firmly opposed to it and strongly condemn such malicious act.

Facts are facts after all. We hope everybody will view Xinjiang-related issues from an objective perspective and see through the real motives of those organizers of the so-called tribunal. Rumors will not write off Xinjiang’s comprehensive progress. Attempts to disrupt Xinjiang’s stability and prosperity are doomed to fail. Xinjiang will continue to achieve even greater success in its economic and social development in the years to come. The clumsy shows of those anti-China elements will be futile.

It is imperative for China and UK to tap the potentials of mutually beneficial cooperation between our two countries. So it is all the more necessary for people here to see the real pictures of Xinjiang and to see through the motives of those organizers of the so-called “tribunal” and not to allow them to continue to mislead the public and spoil the goodwill between the peoples of China and the UK. Thank you!

Xu Guixiang: Next, let’s welcome British human rights lawyer and international arbitrator Graham Perry to share his opinions with us.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Graham Perry, British human rights lawyer and international arbitrator speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Graham Perry: Thanks for inviting me to speak at today’s conference. I’d like to make three points.

Firstly, there is no so-called “genocide” in Xinjiang. I reach this conclusion for the following reasons: first, there is no evidence of “genocide”. Recent “genocides” in Nazi Germany and other places have produced relevant evidence such as burial pits, shooting cites and so on. Refugees of “genocides” fled to other countries for protection. For example, Burmese refugees fled to India and other countries. In Xinjiang, there is no such scenes. Even with modern technology monitoring the borders, we have not found Uygurs’ flight from China.

Many countries keep China under round-clock surveillance. Xinjiang borders many countries--Russia, Pakistan, Mongolia, etc. Under such intensive monitoring networks, they have not spot any Uygur trying to escape from China to neighboring countries. In addition, China is accused of holding millions of Uygurs in detention in “concentration camps”. To my knowledge, there are no such “concentration camps” at all. We are only given blurry satellite pictures with unclear signs. We can only see a handful of people in Uygur costume. There aren’t any solid and detailed photos and video footage to prove the western allegations.

In the past 40 years, China has emerged from a seriously damaged country from Cultural Revolution to a country where prosperity and progress are so visible for the world to see. 130 million Chinese travelled abroad in 2019 alone, but they didn’t claim asylum and turn their back on China.

Secondly, I’d like to introduce another point to prove my judgement. Critics of China often liken the experience of the Uygurs in China to that of the Jews in Germany. Jews suffered race hate in Germany and anti-Semitism was rampant in Germany. Anti-Semitism was everywhere in Nazi political movement. Contrast to this, no UK politician and no UK businessmen have ever reported any unfair treatment against Uygurs.

Issues related to Xinjiang are all about security and territorial integrity. The violent terrorist attacks in Xinjiang are of the same nature with terrorist attacks happened in Manchester. Terrorist attacks happened in Urumqi, Kunming. Many Chinese died from these attacks. These terrorists attempt to separate Xinjiang from China and found an independent state. Former US Ambassador to China and US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia said that more than 3,000 Uygurs fought for terrorist organization--ISIS. China and UK face the same enemy, namely terrorism. There is no so-called “genocide”, “forced labor” nor “forced sterilization” in Xinjiang.

Thirdly, I want to say that Jewish population fell by 8 million during Hitler period. But in China, Uygur population has increased by 1.3 million in the years between 2010 and 2018. These two curves are completely opposite. To today’s world, the most important geopolitical issue is the rise of China and the relative decline of the US and the relation between the two. A socialist country led by a one-hundred-year-old party will continue its growth and become the largest economy. Successive leaders of the United States have been trying to impede the development of China by de-coupling the world from China in hope that China will suffer economic hardships and miseries. By accusing China of “genocide” is another means to isolate China and build an anti-China alliance. Washington’s motive is to curb the development of China and impede its process of becoming the world’s largest economy.

But, Washington faces two major challenges to achieve this goal. One is that China has the respect and friendship of many countries; the other is that China is becoming stronger in this whole time, not the opposite around. Their goal of curbing China is doomed to fail. And eventually, the “genocide” allegation will vanish. But before it disappear completely, people like me who oppose the allegation need to come forward to disclose foreign countries’ lies and the fictions they made. Thank you.

Xu Guixiang: Thanks for the attendance of Ambassador Zheng Zeguang at today’s press conference on Xinjiang-related issues and for his critical remarks. Thanks Mr. Graham Perry for his candid and straightforward remarks. Next, we are going to analyze some of the rumors and false testimonies spread by Western anti-China forces to see how far they are away from truth.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 1, claiming that Xinjiang “suppresses and persecutes Muslims of ethnic groups including Uygurs”. Let’s welcome the spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region--Mr. Elijan Anayat to answer this question.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Elijan Anayat, spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region answers questions at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Elijan Anayat: Facing a serious situation of frequent terrorist attacks and the urgent requirement of people of all ethnic groups’ for combating crimes and safeguarding their safety of life and property, Xinjiang has carried out intensive crackdown on the violent terrorist attacks including violating citizens’ human rights, endangering public security, damaging ethnic unity and splitting the country and has effectively curbed the incidence of terrorist attacks and guaranteed the basic rights such as the right to life, health and development of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang.

Xinjiang’s rigorous crackdown on terrorist attacks has always been conducted in accordance with the law and under the principle that everyone is equal when it comes to law. The crackdown doesn’t target any certain ethnic group nor religion. Anyone engages in terrorism and extremism, or endangers people’s safety of life and property will get due punishment by law.

The fallacy “Xinjiang government suppresses and persecutes Muslims of ethnic groups including Uygurs in the name of counter-terrorism” is in essence trying to estrange people of different ethnic groups in Xinjiang and to create confrontations between Muslims and non-Muslims. Their real intention is to drag Xinjiang back to the time of instability and frequent terrorist attacks to achieve their goal of sabotage the stability in Xinjiang and curb China’s continuous progress.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 2, claiming that the vocational education and training center in Xinjiang is a “concentration camp”. Mr. Jia Chunyang, associate researcher of China Institute of Modern International Relations, will comment on this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Jia Chunyang, associate researcher of China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Jia Chunyang: There are no so-called “concentration camps” in Xinjiang. The vocational education and training center established in accordance with the law in Xinjiang is essentially no different from the “community correction” implemented by the United States, the DDP (Desistance and Disengagement Programme) established by the United Kingdom and the “de-radicalization center” set up in France. They are all beneficial attempts and positive preventive explorations on counter-terrorism and de-radicalization.

Religious extremism is not only an ideological root of violent terrorism, but also the source of frequent violent terrorist attacks in Xinjiang. Over some time in the past, in the guise of ethnicity and religion, extremist forces instigated religious believers to resist government management, denying secular ideas and the achievements of modern civilization, regarded all those who did not follow extreme practices as “pagans”, and wantonly advocated such heresies as “engaging in a holy war and dying for their beliefs in order to enter heaven”, turning some normal people into demons.

In order to completely solve this problem, while severely cracking down on violent terrorist attacks and criminal activities according to law, Xinjiang adheres to the source control and comprehensive measures, and carries out de-radicalization according to law, which has effectively curbed the breeding and spreading of religious extremism. One of the key initiatives is to carry out vocational education and training. From the perspective of legal basis, it is carried out in full accordance with laws and regulations such as the Anti-terrorism Law of the People's Republic of China, The Measures of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region for the Implementation of the counter-terrorism Law, and The Regulations of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on De-radicalizaton. The main purpose is to educate and save those who have been infected with extremism and committed minor criminal acts or illegal acts, and strive to eliminate terrorist attacks in dormancy before they break out. Essentially, the vocational education and training center is a school. In view of the fact that the students’ incompetency of standard spoken and written Chinese language, weak awareness of the rule of law and employment deficiency, and infection with religious extremism, the vocational education and training centers have carried out education and teaching mainly on standard spoken and written Chinese language, legal knowledge, vocational skills and de-radicalization. Regarding the management mode, the vocational education and training center implements boarding management. Students can go home regularly and they can ask for leave. They have freedom of communication and inviolable human dignity, and fully enjoy the right to use their own ethnic language. Religious students can decide whether to participate in legal religious activities after they return home. At the same time, the vocational education and training center has complete living facilities. There is a medical room providing free and round-clock medical services to students. The indoor and outdoor sites for sports and cultural activities can effectively meet the needs of students. As far as the practical effect is concerned, through the systematic training, the students’ comprehensive quality has been lifted, their awareness of the rule of law has been significantly strengthened, and they can use the basic standard spoken and written Chinese language skills including listening, speaking, reading and writing. They have mastered practical skills and improved their employment ability, and get rid of the shackles of terrorism and religious extremism. In October 2019, all the teaching and training students participating in the “Three studies and One Eradication” program have completed their studies. With the help of the government, most of them have achieved stable employment and improved their quality of life. Is there and “concentration camp” like this in the world?

The lie that the vocational education and training center is a “concentration camp” has long been exposed by some insightful people in the international community. Many people who have visited the vocational education and training center understand the urgency, necessity, legitimacy and rationality of carrying out preventive counter-terrorism and establishing the vocational education and training center in Xinjiang. They have commented that the vocational education and training center in Xinjiang is not a “concentration camp”, a false title concocted by the anti-China forces, but a measure suitable for the actual situation of Xinjiang and in line with the interests of the local people, which has achieved practical results. The practice in Xinjiang in this regard is worthy of being learned by the international community. For example, after visiting a vocational education and training center, a Turkish reporter said, “some people in the West say that Xinjiang has established ‘concentration camps’ and some people are being persecuted. I came with this idea, but after I went there, my prejudice was eliminated. What I saw was an education center.”

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 3, claiming that Xinjiang “holds more than one million Uygurs in detention in concentration camps”. Mr. Wang Jiang, a distinguished professor of Zhejiang Normal University and a special researcher of the Human Rights Research Center of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences will give a briefing on this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Wang Jiang speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Wang Jiang: The so-called “more than one million Uygurs held in detention” in vocational education and training centers is a complete fallacy. The U.S. the independent website Greyzone published an article revealing that this sensational rumor was fabricated and spread by non-governmental organizations and anti-China elements supported by the U.S. government. First, the CHRD has come to the absurd conclusion that “10% of the 20 million people in Xinjiang are detained in ‘reeducation camps’ from interviews with 8 overseas Uygurs and rough estimates. Secondly the pseudo scholar Adrian Zenz also fabricated such rumors according to a media report. Even Adrian Zenz himself admitted that his estimation was “uncertain”. On July 25, 2021, Max Blumenthal, an award-winning journalist and the author of several books, editor of the Grayzone spoke at an international symposium No to New Cold War that many media reports alleging an astonishing number of a million Uygurs being detained are based on shaky sources of information that don’t stand up to examination. I hope the international community will keep its eyes open and not be blinded by these lies.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 4, accusing Xinjiang of “large-scale extrajudicial detention”. On Ms. Li Juan, director of the legal work committee of the Standing Committee of the people’s Congress of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, will comment on this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Li Juan speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Li Juan: The statement that Xinjiang “detains ethnic minorities without judicial procedures, imposes charges on them and carries out trial” has no factual basis.

Our combat against illegal and criminal acts is fact based and takes law as the criterion. For illegal and criminal acts, Chinese laws clearly stipulate various law enforcement judicial subjects and procedures. In dealing with terrorist and extremist criminal cases, the relevant judicial organs strictly examine the facts of their violations and crimes before making a decision to punish offenders according to law. The crimes decide what punishments should be decided in accordance with the law. The procuratorial organ shall initiate public prosecution against the ringleaders, core members and major criminals who organize, plan and implement terrorist attacks and extremist and criminal activities, as well as those who have received administrative and criminal punishment or exempted from criminal punishment for the implementation of terrorist attack and extremist and criminal activities and repeat the crimes, the judicial organ shall decide their convictions and punishments in accordance with the law. For those who are instigated, coerced or lured to participate in terrorist attacks or extremist activities, or have committed minor offence concerning terrorism and extremism which does not constitute a crime, the public security organ will deal with their cases according to the law and send them to the vocational education and training centers for education. Those who are instigated, coerced or lured to participate in terrorist or extremist activities, or those who participate in terrorist or extremist activities which have potential dangers, but have not caused actual harmful consequences, only have weak subjective viciousness, and can plead guilty and repent, can be exempted from punishment according to law. Those who voluntarily accept the education and training, after the public security organs’ investigation according to the law, and the procuratorial’s decision not to prosecute can go to vocational education and training center for help. These different treatment and procedures fully embody the principle of treating both symptoms and root causes with comprehensive countermeasures and show that Xinjiang adopts a policy and educational aid that strikes the right balance between compassion and severity.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 5, claiming that “female trainees were sexually assaulted and male trainees were tortured” in vocational education and training centers in Xinjiang . On this issue, I would like to invite Mr. Elijan Anayat, spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, will comment on this issue.

Elijan Anayat: The vocational education and training centers in Xinjiang strictly implement the basic principles of respecting and protecting human rights stipulated in Constitution and laws, and fully protect the human dignity of the trainees from infringement, and forbid any form of personal insult and abuse, so there is no so called “female trainees were sexually assaulted and male trainees were tortured” at all.

Recently, anti-china forces in the United States and the west, including the “Uygur tribunal”, have invited some Xinjiang related “actors and actresses” to testify in court and accept interviews. However, their fictional plots and fabricated lies have been laid bare again and again in the face of the truth. For example, Shayilaguli Shawutibayi, who won the “International Women of courage Award” granted by the U.S. State Department, initially said that she had been a teacher in the vocational education and training center, and then said that she was a “victim of the vocational education and training center”, “was detained in a ‘concentration camp’, “was subjected to torture and medical experiments”, and “was forced to eat pork”. In fact, she has never worked in the vocational education and training center, nor studied there, let alone being subjected to coercive measures. Her description about the vocational education and training center is a complete slander. Many graduates of the vocational education and training center have exposed it with their own experience.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 6, claiming that Xinjiang “implements large-scale surveillance”. On this issue, Mr. Anwar Siyit, vice president of Xinjiang Law Society, to brief the situation.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Anwar Siyit speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Anwar Siyit: According to the common practice of the international community--using modern scientific and technological products and big data for social governance, Xinjiang has installed cameras in urban and rural public areas, main roads, transportation hubs and other public places according to law, in order to improve the social governance and effectively prevent and combat crime. These measures have enhanced the sense of social security and won the general support of the masses of all ethnic groups. It should be emphasized that this measure does not target any specific ethnic group, and these surveillance facilities themselves can not automatically identify and target a specific ethnic group.

As we all know, it is the United States and some western countries that really implement surveillance. For example, the United States has been criticized for using high-tech means to implement large-scale surveillance. A study released by Georgetown University also shows that about half of American adults, more than 117 million people, are included in the face recognition system used by law enforcement agencies, among which African Americans are more vulnerable to censorship than other ethnic groups. The report released by Pew Research Center shows that 52% of Muslims in the United States are under the surveillance of the government, 28% of Muslims have been regarded as suspects, and 21% of Muslims claimed that they had been individually checked at the airport security check. Since Snowden exposed the “Prism” project of the United States in June 2013, the surveillance of the United States over leaders of other countries and international organizations, ordinary people and related enterprises has been expanding, and the technological means have been renovated day by day, which has long been known to the world. This is the real “Surveillance Empire”.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 7, falsely accusing Xinjiang of “collecting residents’ DNA and other biological information and implementing large-scale gene surveillance. Mr. Hoshur, associate professor of the School of Politics and Law of Xinjiang Normal University, will brief the issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Hoshur speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Hoshur: Since 2016, in order to improve the health of people of all ethnic groups, Xinjiang has implemented the national free physical examination project, and people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang can enjoy free physical examination once a year in medical and health institutions.There is no biological information such as DNA is collected during the physical examination. At present, Xinjiang has invested more than 5 billion yuan in the physical examination project. Through regular free physical examination, early prevention, early detection, early diagnosis and early treatment of diseases have been realized. People of all ethnic groups really feel the benefits brought by this medical policy. On the free physical examination day, everyone rush for it.

In fact, the United States is the country that really widely collects and uses genetic information. The website of Russia today, a TV station, reported that the U.S. Air Force education and training command had released recruitment information, especially demanding ribonucleic acid samples from Russians. The Wall Street Journal disclosed that the Pentagon has formulated a research and development plan to attack opponents with genetic weapons. Participants said that the genes of Chinese in Asia, Aryans in Europe and Arabs in the Middle East were included in the collection of the U.S. Army. The Pentagon’s gene war project includes the procedures as follows, by studying the genetic composition of competitors, discovering their genetic characteristics, and then studying the drugs and foods that mutate genes, and mutating the genes of a specific ethnic group through genetic drugs and foods, so as to win the opponents by any means. Who is using genes to engage in covert deal? I believe everyone is very clear about it.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 8, claiming that Xinjiang has built a large number of “detention facilities”. I would like to comment on this issue.

Xu Guixiang: Some western think tanks inferred by studying satellite images that Xinjiang “has built larger buildings to detain more people”. This is a gimmick to confuse the public. For example, Australia Strategic Policy Institution has launched a “Xinjiang data project”. In the “map section” of the project, it claims that it has identified and mastered the geographical information of the so-called 380 “detention facilities” in Xinjiang through satellite images and night lighting technology, and that Xinjiang has “built a large number of new detention places” in Urumqi, Kashgar, Aksu and other places. However, after verification, of the so-called 380 “detention facilities”, 343 are regular schools, institutions, hospitals, houses, shops, etc., accounting for 90%. In response to such speculation, the Australian Alert Service, a weekly publication of the Australian Citizens Party issued an article pointing out that the “satellite image report” of Australian Strategic Policy Institution is extremely absurd. The two “detention centers” in Turpan mentioned in the “report” are actually the office buildings of the Industrial and Commercial information bureau and Veterans Affairs Bureau in Gaochang District.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 9, claiming that “some vocational education and training centers in Xinjiang have been transformed into prisons”. Mr. Anwar Siyit, vice president of Xinjiang Law Society, will brief the issue.

Anwar Siyit: Some anti-china forces said that “through investigation, satellite images and interviews with experts and former detainees, it shows that although many ‘training centers’ have indeed been closed, some of them have just been transformed into prisons or pretrial detention facilities”.

In fact, after the completion of education and training, some of the vocational education and training centers in some places are still vacant. Some have been transformed into nursing homes and other social service institutions, and they have never been transformed into detention centers or prisons. Here I would like to point out that the vocational education and training center is a school. Its designing and construction, functions and facilities are built according to the school model. Detention houses and prisons are supervision facilities. There are very strict procedures for their layout adjustment, site selection and construction and project approval. Their construction and change can not be done arbitrarily. There is unified criteria for their design and construction, area division and facilities. Therefore, the vocational education and training center cannot be used and is not suitable for use as a regulatory facility.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 10, claiming that overseas Chinese from Xinjiang “lost contact with their relatives in Xinjiang”. Mr. Elijan Anayat, spokesman of People’s Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region will comment on this issue.

Elijan Anayat: China is a country ruled by law. Chinese citizens’ personal freedom and freedom of communication are protected by the Constitution and the law. We can responsibly say that the correspondence between the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang and their relatives abroad is free and normal. As for some overseas people who said that they had “lost contact” with their relatives in Xinjiang, after investigation and verification, there are mainly the following reasons: first, some overseas Chinese people from Xinjiang have participated in the “East Turkistan” organization, and their relatives in Xinjiang are unwilling to contact them. Secondly, the relatives of some overseas Chinese from Xinjiang have been held in detention by the public security organ because they are suspected of murder, rape, drug trafficking, robbery and other criminal acts. According to the law, they are not allowed to contact other people. Thirdly, some overseas Chinese from Xinjiang lost the contact of their relatives in Xinjiang because they kept a wrong telephone number or changed the phone number. Fourthly, some overseas Chinese from Xinjiang were bewitched and coerced by the “three forces”. In order to incite anti-China acts, the “East Turkistan” elements deliberately fabricated the lies of so-called “lost contact” and “being detained” . For example, Kuzati Altay, the head of the American Uygur Association and the nephew of Rebiya Kader, the former head of the World Uygur Congress, said in a press conference of an anti-China organization Alliance for the Promotion of Religious Freedom in China and in an interview with the media that his father Maimaiti Kader had been “arrested” and was probably dead. However, according to the verification, Kuzati Altay’s father Maimaiti Kader, now lives in Urumqi and everything goes well.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 11, claiming that the passports of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang had been confiscated and they could not go abroad, and their overseas relatives were not allowed to return to Xinjiang to visit them. On this issue, Mr. Anwar Siyit, vice president of Xinjiang Law Society, will make some comments.

Anwar Siyit: China is a country ruled by law. Citizens’ personal freedom and right to exit and entry are protected in accordance with the law. At the same time, Xinjiang has never restricted the freedom of people of all ethnic groups to exit and entry, including overseas Uygur Chines, nor has it restricted their contacts with their relatives in Xinjiang. Chinese embassies and consulates stationed abroad protect the legitimate rights and interests of overseas Chinese, including ethnic minorities in Xinjiang, in accordance with The Exit and Entry Administration Law of the People’s Republic of China, and Passport Law of the People’s Republic of China and other laws and regulations. As long as they are Chinese citizens and do not violate Chinese laws and regulations, they can apply to the Chinese embassy or consulate in their place of residence for replacement or reissue of passports. As far as we know, the application of the vast majority of Chinese people from Xinjiang to Chinese embassies and consulates abroad for renewal or reissue of passports have been accepted and approved. Only a few people’s application have not been approved because they do not comply with Chinese laws and regulations, and have participated or have been suspected to have participated in terrorist attacks.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 12, claiming that Xinjiang “restricts freedom of religious belief” and “prohibits fasting”. Mr. Abudurekefu Tumuniyaz, president of the Islamic Association of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and President of Xinjiang Islamic Institute will comment on this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Abudurekefu Tumuniyaz speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Abudurekefu Tumuniyaz: The so-called “restriction of freedom of religious belief” and “Prohibition of fasting” in Xinjiang are completely slanders. Xinjiang fully implements the policy of religious freedom and guarantees the normal religious activities and religious needs of religious believers in accordance with the law. In Xinjiang, all legal religious activities carried out by religious believers in places of religious activities and in their homes in accordance with religious customs, such as praying, fasting and religious festivals, are conducted by religious organizations and religious believers themselves and protected by law. No organization or individual shall interfere. Xinjiang has never banned Muslims from fasting in Ramadan. It is up to individuals to decide whether to fast or not. In recent years, the conditions of religious sites in Xinjiang have been continuously improved. Mosques are equipped with tap water, electricity, roads, gas, communication, radio and television , medical services, electronic screens, computers, electric fans or air conditioners, fire-fighting facilities and drinking water equipment. The Jumah mosques also have bathing facilities and water flushing toilets, which greatly facilitates religious believers. At present, there are 10 religious institutions in Xinjiang, including Xinjiang Islamic Institute and its 8 branches and one Islamic Scriptures School. They recruit nearly 1000 students every year and have formed a relatively complete Islamic education and training system. The religious classics including The Koran, and The Essence of Buhari’s Sermon have been translated and published in Chinese, Uygur, Kazak, and Kirgiz, and the channels for religious believers to acquire religious knowledge have been continuously increased, which ensures the healthy and orderly inheritance of Islam.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 13, claiming that Xinjiang “forcibly demolished mosques”. On this issue, I would like to invite Mr. Abudurekefu Tumuniyaz, President of the Islamic Association of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and President of Xinjiang Islamic Institute to comment again.

Abudurekefu Tumuniyaz: The so-called “forcible demolition of mosques” in Xinjiang is completely nonsense. In China, as long as religious venues fulfill the registration in government departments in accordance with the law, they can obtain legal status, and all of their rights and interests are protected by law.

Most mosques in Xinjiang were built in the 1980s-1990s or even earlier. Some of them were built of adobe, some were narrow and some were in a state of disrepair. Thus, whenever a gale or rain strikes, normal religious activities would be disturbed. Not to mention, in case an earthquake occurs, the safety of Muslims would be threatened. Moreover, some of the mosques were laid out improperly, bringing inconveniences to Muslims in carrying out religious activities. In recent years, as urbanization and rural revitalization accelerate, in response to the appeal and application of local Muslims, combining with renovation of urban shanty areas, regulation on human settlements in rural areas, and relocation for poverty alleviation, relevant governments have well solved the problem of dilapidated mosques through building, relocation and extension of the mosques. All these measures were taken in line with the plan on urban and rural development. Muslims are content with the safer and better laid out mosques. Up till now, mosques in Xinjiang can totally satisfy the need of Muslims.

It is said abroad that Xinjiang has demolished Jami Mosque in Yecheng County, and Id Kah Mosque of 800 years in Yutian County, Hotan Prefecture in 2018. It is completely out of conjecture. In fact, the two mosques of hundreds of years have not been demolished, instead, they have been well protected. In September 2018, according to the appraisal of relevant departments, the gateway arch and the gate tower of Jami Mosque in Yecheng County are class D dangerous buildings. In order to protect the lives of religious believers and ensure the conduct of normal religious activities, in February 2019, with the approval of the Religious Affairs Department of Yecheng Government, renovation and repair was given to the gateway arch and the gate tower of the mosque and the mosque was put into use on March 6, 2019. Id Kah Mosque in Yutian county is also well protected and was included in the protection list of national cultural relics by the State Council in 2013.

Xu Guixiang: we have shown you some pictures which show the mosques in the past and at present in the past press conferences on Xinjiang related issues. If you want to see them again, you can browse in the Internet.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 14, claiming that Xinjiang “imprisons and persecutes religious personage”. Ms. Ren Hong, associate researcher of the Religious Research Institute of the Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences, will brief this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Ren Hong speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Ren Hong: The criminals convicted in accordance with the law are neither religious people nor religious staff at all. They are criminals holding the banner of religion and wearing the cloak of religion. They preach religious extremism, and engage themselves in terrorist attacks and separatist infiltration and destruction. Taking advantage of the simple religious feelings of religious believers, they spread extremism, wantonly distorting religious doctrines and rules, bind extremism with religion, and encourage the overthrow of political power. They deny all secular concepts and achievements of modern civilization, advocate the so-called “engaging in a holy war and dying for their beliefs in order to enter heaven”, and maim the so-called “pagans” and “renegades”. They brought serious damage to local normal religious activities, and conducted exclusion, persecution and even killing to religious people with good faith. Due to their bewitchment, a large number of religious believers were chained in heavy spiritual shackles, their normal work and life were seriously disturbed, and socioeconomic development was seriously affected. People of this kind must be severely punished by law.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 15, claiming that Xinjiang “replaces Uygur with Chinese and eliminates languages of ethnic minorities”. Ms. Marhaba Aolan, professor of Xinjiang University, will comment on this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Marhaba Aolan speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Marhaba Aolan: As for learning standard spoken and written Chinese, the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and The Law of the People's Republic Of China on the Standard Spoken and Written Chinese language stipulate that citizens have the right to learn and use the standard spoken and written Chinese language, and the state provides conditions for citizens to learn and use the standard spoken and written Chinese language. While promoting the education of the standard spoken and written Chinese, in accordance with the requirements of the national curriculum plan for primary and secondary schools, Xinjiang has also set up courses on languages of ethnic minorities, including Uygur, Kazak, Mongolian, Kirgiz, Xibe, fully ensuring the right of ethnic minority students to learn their own languages. The inheritance and development of ethnic minority language and culture has effectively been promoted.

At present, the languages of all ethnic groups are widely used in the fields of judicature, administration, education, press and publication, radio and television, literature and art, social and public affairs and so on. Citizens of all ethnic groups have the right to use their own languages for election or litigation. In performing their official duties, the governmental departments of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and those of the autonomous prefectures and autonomous counties shall use the standard spoken and written Chinese language and the language of the ethnic groups exercising regional autonomy at the same time. Newspapers, books, audio-visual products and electronic publications shall be published in the standard spoken and written Chinese and the other five languages including Uygur, Kazak, Mongolian, Kirgiz, Xibe. Over 100 newspapers and over 200 periodicals, 52 newspapers and 120 periodicals use ethnic minority languages. All these have provided great convenience for the people of all ethnic groups in their life, work, and study.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 16, claiming that Xinjiang “prohibits ethnic minorities from wearing their own ethnic costumes and forcibly removes halal signs”. On this issue, Ms. Marhaba Aolan, a professor of Xinjiang University, will comment again.

Marhaba Aolan: The Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and The Law of the People's Republic Of China on Regional Ethnic Autonomy stipulate that all ethnic groups “have the freedom to maintain or reform their own customs”. Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region strictly abides by the provisions of the Constitution and laws, and fully guarantees the customs and habits of all ethnic groups in diet, festivals, wedding and funeral rituals, etc. Xinjiang has taken a series of specific measures to ensure the supply of special food for ethnic groups who believe in Islam, requiring large and medium-sized cities and small towns with Muslims to maintain a certain number of halal restaurants. “Halal restaurants” or “halal stoves” shall be set up in traffic arteries and employment organizations with ethnic minority workers. Beef and mutton supplied to Muslims shall be processed, stored, transported and sold in accordance with their customs. Ethnic minorities can enjoy legal holidays during their own traditional festivals, such as “Corban Festival” and “Rouzi Festival”. Among ethnic minorities with burial customs, the government does not promote cremation and takes specific measures to ensure it, such as allocating special land and establishing special cemeteries. There are no restrictions on ethnic customs and habits such as wedding and funeral ceremonies, circumcision and naming children according to Scripture.

The so-called claim of “prohibiting ethnic minorities from wearing their own ethnic costumes, forcing them to celebrate the Spring Festival and forcibly removing halal signs” in Xinjiang is ridiculous. They are deliberately undermining ethnic unity and producing ethnic estrangement in Xinjiang. In Xinjiang, everyone has the right to choose to wear clothes freely without interference from any external factors. Cadres and people of all ethnic groups wearing colorful ethnic costumes can be seen everywhere, singing and dancing, or strolling leisurely. The Spring Festival is a traditional festival of the Chinese nation. All ethnic groups are members of the big family of the Chinese nation. It is natural to observe the festival together, which is also in line with the common wishes of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang. During the Spring Festival, people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang paste Spring Festival couplets, make dumplings and set off firecrackers, enjoying the happiness of the festival together. How come we are “being forced”? We actively regulate the process and the business of halal food. All restaurants that meet the management regulations of halal food hang halal signs normally, and there is no “forced removal of halal signs” at all. People who have been to Xinjiang know that halal restaurants can be seen everywhere in the streets of Xinjiang.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 17, accusing Xinjiang of “suppressing ethnic minority intellectuals”. On this issue, Dr. Hoshur of the Institute of Rural Development of Xinjiang Academy of social sciences will comment on this issue.

Photo taken on September 9, 2021 shows Osman Omur speaks at the 54th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Beijing. Photo by Xinjiang Daily/ Zou Yi

Osman Omur: China is a country ruled by law and has complete judicial procedures. Chinese citizens, including Uygur intellectuals, will not meet coercive measures as long as they do not violate Chinese laws. In fact, many intellectuals subjected to rumor are working and living normally, have not been abused or arrested, still work normally in their posts, and have not lost their rights and freedoms. However, it is undeniable that there are a very small number of so-called “intellectuals” who advocate terrorism and extremism and help terrorists split the country and incite ethnic hatred. They have been reduced to enemies of the people of all ethnic groups and are bound to be severely punished in accordance with the law.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 18, claiming that Xinjiang “suppressed the traditional culture of ethnic minorities”. On this issue, I would like to invite Ms. Marhaba Aolan, a professor of Xinjiang University, to make comments.

Marhaba Aolan: Xinjiang has been a place where many ethnic groups have migrated and lived together since ancient times, and it is also a stage for multi-cultural exchanges and integration. The excellent traditional culture of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang, an important part of Chinese culture, breeds and grows in the embrace of Chinese culture. In the course of inheriting and carrying forward Chinese culture, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region attaches great importance to the excavation, inheritance and protection of excellent traditional cultures of all ethnic groups, forming a new atmosphere of prosperity and development of cultures of all ethnic. For example, Xinjiang Uygur Muqam of Xinjiang and the Kirgiz epic Manas were registered on the “UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity”, and Uygur Meshrep on the “List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding”. All ethnic groups have their own representative intangible cultural heritage projects listed in the intangible cultural heritage list at the national and autonomous region level. The excellent cultural traditions of all ethnic groups have been inherited and developed. Among popular folk festivals are the Han people’s Lantern Festival, the Uygur’s Meshrep, the Kazak’s Aytes, the Kirgiz’s Kobuz Ballad Singing Fair, the Mongolian Nadam Fair, and the Hui people’s Hua’er Folk Song Festival. The traditional sports of all ethnic groups have made great progress. Different forms of sports meetings are held everywhere. Traditional sports competitions and performances with ethnic characteristics, such as wrestling, horse racing, archery, Buzkashi and Dawazi, are also held on traditional festivals. The people of all ethnic groups participate in the sports, competing on the same court, learning from each other and enjoying themselves. The so-called “suppressing the traditional culture of ethnic minorities” in Xinjiang is completely a false proposition.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 19, claiming that the senior-high school class held in hinterland area is a “ethnicity reconstruction movement”. Mr. Elijan Anayat, spokesman of the Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, will comment on this issue.

Elijan Anayat: The overseas anti-China forces say that the senior-high school class held in hinterland area “gives Chinese names” and “carries out political brainwashing” to Xinjiang ethnic minority students. This absurd talk is contrary to the reality and reason, and seriously prejudiced. It is an insult to senior-high school classes held in hinterland areas.

Since September 2000, in order to further strengthen the training of talents of all ethnic groups, Xinjiang has successively opened senior-high school classes in hinterland areas, taking the advantage of high-quality educational resources of developed inland provinces (cities) in the mainland. The senior-high school classes held in hinterland areas implement voluntary enrollment. The students studying there include both ethnic minority students including Uygur students Han students. The relevant provinces (cities) arrange local class A high schools with good educational conditions to undertake the running of senior-high school classes, and provide a strong teaching staff to ensure that Xinjiang students fully enjoy local high-quality education and teaching. The schools have increased investment in senior-high school classes, actively improving the learning and living conditions of Xinjiang students. In order to facilitate the communication between students’ parents and schools, Xinjiang has also organized batches of students’ parents to visit teachers and students in schools in relevant provinces and cities to learn students’ study and life in the inland areas. According to incomplete statistics, more than 95% of the graduates of senior-high school classes held in hinterland areas have been admitted to colleges and universities in inland areas. After their graduation, most of them chose to return to Xinjiang to work in all walks of life and have become a new force in building Xinjiang and developing their hometown.

The relevant provincial and municipal high school have never asked ethnic minority students studying in Xinjiang senior-high school classes to change their names in various administrative links including enrollment, campus disciplining and graduation. It is clearly recorded in the student status files. There is no so-called case that “the school gives Chinese names to ethnic minority students from Xinjiang”. Some people outside China are completely fabricating stories. Can they take out a student status file like that for us to see?

It is only right and proper that patriotism education should be carried out in senior-high school classes held in hinterland areas. Which country does not educate its students to love their motherland, learn the laws and their own languages? For example, since the end of the 19th century, the United States has required students to read or recite the “oath of loyalty”, which has become a tradition in American primary and secondary schools. Is this “political brainwashing”?

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 20, claiming that Xinjiang “forced ethnic minority children to attend boarding schools, resulting in the separation of flesh and blood”. I will comment on this issue.

Xu Guixiang: The so-called “Xinjiang forced ethnic minority children to attend boarding schools, resulting in the separation of flesh and blood” is completely inconsistent with reality. Xinjiang has a vast area, and the distance between villages and towns is far, so it is very inconvenient for students to go to school, and it gives parents a hard job to pick up their children to and from school. In order to solve this problem, nearly 400 boarding primary and secondary schools were built in Xinjiang as early as in the 1980s. In recent years, the state has made arrangements to strengthen the construction of boarding schools. According to the requirements, Xinjiang has made scientific and reasonable planning in combination with the development of new urbanization, the implementation of Rural Revitalization Strategy, the changing trend of local school-age children, as well as factors such as geography, transportation, environment and safety. Boarding school construction strictly abides by the relevant national and regional construction standards, and all kinds of learning and living facilities are very complete. The teaching staff in boarding schools are guaranteed through recruitment, training, supporting education program from the inland provinces, and government purchase services. In the stage of compulsory education, students in boarding schools are free of tuition and textbook fees, like students in other schools. Rural boarding students are free of board and lodging fees, and enjoy special living subsidies. Each student in primary school is given 1,250 yuan per academic year, and each student in junior middle school 1,500 yuan per academic year, which effectively reduces the financial burden of students’ families. As for whether students are boarding, it is entirely up to the students themselves and their parents to choose voluntarily. There is no so-called "forced boarding". Boarding schools in Xinjiang have never restricted the contact between students and their parents. Boarding school students arrive at school every Monday morning, finish school on Friday afternoon, and go home on weekends, on holidays and festivals, and in winter and summer vacations. If they have something to do, they can ask for leave at any time. In order to facilitate the contact between parents and students, each dormitory of the school is equipped with a telephone, and students can call their parents at any time. The school head teacher’s telephone is known to students’ parents, and parents can call the teacher if necessary. There is no such thing as “separation of flesh and blood”.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 21 falsely claiming that Xinjiang carried out the program of “investigating people’s condition, benefiting people’s livelihood and drawing people’s hearts closer” and “ethnic unity like one family” in order to “surveil Uygurs”. On this issue, Mr. Hoshur, associate professor of the School of Politics and Law of Xinjiang Normal University, will make comments.

Hoshur: The purpose of carrying out the program of “investigating people’s condition, benefiting people’s livelihood and drawing people’s hearts closer” and “ethnic unity like one family” is to investigate the needs of people of all ethnic groups and help solve practical problems. It is not a “surveillance” activity at all. Over the years, “investigating people’s condition, benefiting people’s livelihood and drawing people’s hearts closer” program has achieved remarkable fruits and has been actively supported by the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang. Firstly, motivating the masses to develop the economy. Characteristic industries based on local conditions have been developed and collective economy at the village level has been expanding continuously. In 2020 alone, the “investigating people’s condition, benefiting people’s livelihood and drawing people’s hearts closer” task forces assisted in the establishment of various breeding bases and more than 7920 farmers’ professional cooperatives to help the people increase their income. Secondly, helping the masses solve their problems and investigating the demands and difficulties by in-depth visit to the masses. In 2020 alone, we coordinated and helped invest more than 520 million yuan to solve more than 2,191,000 difficulties in housing, employment and medical treatment. Thirdly, promoting the implementation of the policy of benefiting the people. We actively promoted the implementation of the “people benefiting project”. In 2020 alone, we assisted in issuing more than 14.68 billion yuan of various benefiting subsidies (compensation), benefiting more than 13.185 million people. Fourthly, helping to complete the task of poverty alleviation. We have extensively carried out practical skills training in construction, cooking, embroidery, planting and breeding to help poverty-stricken people master employment skills and get local or nearby employment. In 2020 alone, the task force carried out more than 94,000 practical skills training sessions and training attendance has totaled more than 5,396,000, which has helped more than 1,034,000 poverty-stricken households get employment nearby.

The “ethnic unity like one family” program and ethnic unity and friendship activities widely carried out in Xinjiang are not “surveillance” activities at all. Since 2016, more than 1.1 million cadres and civil workers of all ethnic groups have paired up with more than 1.6 million people of all ethnic groups, making friends and relatives with each other. Among them, cadres and civil workers of Han are paired up and make friends and relatives with masses of ethnic minorities, including Uygur, and accordingly, cadres and civil workers of ethnic minorities, including Uygur, are also paired up and make friends and relatives with Han people. Cadres and civil workers of all ethnic groups gave full play to their own advantages, actively helping masses of all ethnic groups solve practical problems in their work and life such as medical treatment, employment and schooling, and did many good and practical things to the satisfaction of the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang and won their support, This is a concrete manifestation of Xinjiang governments at all levels taking the people in mind and doing practical things for the people.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 22, claiming that there was “forced labor in large scale” in Xinjiang. On this issue, Mr. Wang Jiang, a distinguished professor of Zhejiang Normal University and a specially invited researcher of the Center for Human Rights Studies of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, is invited to give a briefing here.

Wang Jiang: The so-called “forced labor” in Xinjiang is completely nonsense. The existence of “forced labor” is not determined by the subjective assumptions of some countries and institutions. The international community has had a clear definition of this issue far past. The Forced Labor Convention adopted by the general conference of the International Labor Organization in 1930 defines “forced labor” as “all work or services which is exacted from any person under the menace of any penalty and for which the said person has not offered himself voluntarily”.

The labor and employment of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang are protected by laws. Xinjiang has always followed the spirit of the Constitution of the International Labor Organization and relevant conventions, and strictly implemented laws and regulations such as the Labor Law of the People’s Republic of China, The Opinions of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on the Implementation of the Labor Law of the People’s Republic of China, and The Measures of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on the Implementation of the Regulations on Labor Security Supervision, so as to bring the establishment, operation, supervision and mediation of labor relations into the track of legalization. Inspection for labor law enforcement is carried out regularly. Besides, forced labor by means of violence, threat or illegal restriction of personal freedom is prohibited.

The people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang are completely free to decide in employment. Xinjiang adheres to the employment policy, which combines workers’ independent employment, market-regulated employment, government-aided employment and encouragement in entrepreneurship together, effectively playing the role of the market in allocating labor resources, and thus enables workers and enterprises of all ethnic groups to build labor relations through independent, voluntary and two-way choices. Laborers of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang have the freedom to choose their careers. They are free to decide where to go to work and what job they take, and thus their personal freedom has never been restricted. What the government does is to create a better environment for labor and employment, create conditions for the people of all ethnic groups to find satisfactory jobs and obtain stable income, and ensure the labor and employment rights of the people of all ethnic groups to the greatest extent.

The labor rights and interests of the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang are protected according to law. Based on the principle of equality, voluntariness and consensus through consultation, employees of all ethnic groups sign labor contracts with enterprises according to law, and their rights to labor remuneration, rest and vacation, labor safety and health, social insurance and welfare are all protected according to law. In Xinjiang or other provinces, the rights and interests of workers of all ethnic groups, from religious belief and ethnic culture to language, are respected and protected according to law. There is no doubt that the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang work with dignity and create their own happy life. There is no so-called “forced labor” at all.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 23, claiming that in Xinjiang “some Uygurs were forcibly sent to work in other provinces and deprived of their cultural and religious beliefs”. On this issue, I would like to invite Dr. Osman Omur from the Institute of Rural Development of Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences to make comments.

Osman Omur: Employment is the most effective way to solve poverty. One person’s employment can often pull the whole family out of poverty. In recent years, in order to resolutely win the battle against poverty, Xinjiang has implemented the employment priority policy, continuously expanded the scale of employment, and worked hard to help the poverty-stricken people of all ethnic groups get rid of poverty and increase their income. “To assist through transferred employment” is one of the important measures.

The reasons for the transfer of surplus labor force to other developed provinces are actually very simple. Firstly, the masses have urgent needs. Many poverty-stricken people in Xinjiang want to take a walk and have a look in other provinces and cities, broaden their horizons, learn skills, earn more money through stable employment and make a better life. Secondly, other provinces offer a large number of jobs and there are many labor-intensive enterprises there, and the types of work are suitable for the surplus labor force in Xinjiang. What the government departments in Xinjiang are doing is to effectively connect the needs of the poverty-stricken people in Xinjiang with the employment in other provinces, so that Xinjiang locals can make money and live a well off life.

Like all workers, Xinjiang migrant workers in other provinces enjoy the rights including employment, signing labor contracts, remuneration, rest and vacation, labor safety and health, social insurance and welfare and other legal rights according to law. They all have signed labor contracts with enterprises according to law, which define the work content, working conditions, working hours, labor remuneration, social insurance, rest and vacation and other rights and interests, and establish labor relations protected by law. In accordance with the provisions of the labor law, the enterprise has purchased endowment insurance, medical insurance, unemployment insurance, work-related injury insurance and maternity insurance for migrant workers from Xinjiang. The enterprises also reimburse the travel expenses for their visiting relatives and arrange free physical examination for migrant workers from Xinjiang. At the same time, the Trade Union of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and the counterparts of other inland provinces and cities have established a two-way mechanism for protecting legal rights and jointly protect the rights and interests of Xinjiang migrant workers, actively guiding them to join local trade union, and issuing the Manual for Employee Rights Protection free of charge to help solve difficulties in a timely manner. In addition, there are mosques in many places in other provinces and cities. Xinjiang ethnic minority employees who believe in Islam can freely participate in religious activities there as they do in Xinjiang, without the intervention of any organization or individual. In other provinces, enterprises also respect the ethnic culture and customs of Xinjiang employees. On the days of traditional festivals of ethnic minorities such as Corban Festival and Rouzi Festival, the enterprises will hold parties to celebrate. Everyone lives in harmony like one family. There is no so-called “deprivation of cultural and religious beliefs”.

In recent years, all ethnic minorities working in the inland areas have extricated themselves from poverty and live a well off life. According to incomplete statistics, the per capita annual income of Xinjiang workers who are employed in the inland areas is about 40,000 yuan, which is basically equivalent to the disposable income of local urban permanent residents. Now, more and more ethnic minority people see that their fellows have made money in the inland areas. They are actively registering in the human resources market and also going to work in enterprises of other provinces to make money.

Xu Guixiang:

False testimony 24, claiming that in Xinjiang “ethnic minorities are forced to pick cotton”. On this issue, Mr. Jia Chunyang, associate researcher of China Institute of Modern International Relations, will make comments.

Jia Chunyang: So far there has been no need to “force ethnic minorities to pick cotton” and this case has never existed in Xinjiang. A few years ago, in autumn when it was time to pick cotton, many migrant workers from Henan, Sichuan and other places went to Xinjiang by train to pick cotton. Although cotton picking is very hard work, due to the cotton growers’ free accommodations and high remuneration, some ethnic minority people have voluntarily joined the seasonal work. On the basis of equality, voluntariness and consensus, these cotton pickers signed labor contracts with cotton growers and received corresponding remuneration. It is calculated that in the nearly 50-day working season for cotton-picking, the average income of cotton picker is up to tens of thousands of yuan per person. Why didn’t they do the work actively in order to make so much money in such a short time?

In recent years, cotton production in Xinjiang has been highly mechanized. Even in the busy picking season, there is no need for a large number of “cotton pickers”. According to the 2020 data released by the Agricultural Department of Xinjiang, the mechanical picking rate of cotton in Xinjiang has reached 69.83%, of which 95% of cotton in Northern Xinjiang is picked by machinery. Under such circumstances, how come the ethnic minorities are forced to pick cotton”?

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 25, claiming that Xinjiang implements a stricter family planning policy for ethnic minorities. On this issue, I would like to invite Ms. Li Juan, director of the legal work committee of the Standing Committee of the People's Congress of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, to make comments.

Li Juan: The implementation of China’s family planning policy has experienced an orderly process from the inland provinces to the frontier, from cities to rural areas, and from the Han to ethnic minorities. The implementation of family planning policy for ethnic minorities is not so strict as that for the Han.

Since 1975, Xinjiang has implemented the family planning policy in Urumqi and other cities where Han residents are relatively concentrated. In 1981, the Interim Provisions on Several Issues of Family Planning were issued, and the family planning policy was fully implemented among the Han population. In 1992, the Family Planning Measures of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region was issued, which marks the implementation of family planning policy covering all Xinjiang locals while it is not as strict as that for the Han population, that is, it is advocated that every Han couples in cities and towns should bear and raise one child and those in rural areas can have two children; A couple of urban ethnic minorities can have two children, and those in rural areas can have three children. In 2017, considering the improvement of economic and social development and the shared wishes of family planning of all ethnic groups, Xinjiang revised the population and family planning regulations, stipulating that all ethnic groups implement a unified family planning policy, that is, a couple in urban areas can have two children and a couple in rural areas can have three children. It is easy to find that the family planning policy implemented on ethnic minorities in Xinjiang is not only 17 years later than that of the Han population, but it is also not so strict as that in other provinces. In the future, the People’s Congress of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region will seriously revise Xinjiang’s local legislation in accordance with the family planning law revised by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, organize the implementation of the third-child policy according to law, and promote the long-term and balanced population development.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 26, accusing Xinjiang of implementing “forced sterilization”. Let’s welcome Director of the Legal Working Committee of the Standing Committee of the People’s Congress of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region--Ms. Li Juan to give us relevant information.

Li Juan: The accusation that “Chinese government forces Uygur women to be sterilized and forces them to wear contraceptive devices to limit the Uygur population’s increase” is total slander in and out.

China is a country ruled by law. The fertility technical services in Xinjiang have been guided by the principle of a combination of national guidance and. Whether to adopt contraceptive measures or what method they choose are up to their own wish. No organization nor individual shall interfere with their decision. To our knowledge, localities in Xinjiang have followed the principle of people’s initiative and technical guidance to encourage local people to choose a long-term effective contraceptive method. There has been a significant increase in the number of people choosing free tubal ligation and intrauterine device placement within a period of time. Practice has proved that among all kinds of contraceptive measures, tubal ligation and intrauterine device placement are long-term contraceptive measures, which are internationally recognized as contraceptive measures with small side effects, high safety and effectiveness. They have been widely used in other regions of China, and are also voluntarily accepted by the people of childbearing age in Xinjiang. The so-called “forcing Uygur people to be sterilized or wear contraceptive devices to limit the population of Uygur people” doesn’t exist at all.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 27, accusing Xinjiang of committing “genocide” against ethnic groups including Uygurs. Let’s welcome Associate researcher of China Institute of Modern International Relations--Mr. Jia Chunyang to introduce relevant information.

Jia Chunyang: In recent years, Western anti-China forces led by the United States deliberately smeared China’s relevant administrative measures as “concentration camps” “large-scale surveillance” “forced labor” “forced sterilization” and “inter-generational separation” and viciously labeled “genocide” on Xinjiang. The so-called “genocide” in Xinjiang is the “lie of the century” fabricated by western anti-China forces and should be listed as the biggest frame in human history. These extremely absurd statements are malicious violation of the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, serious disrespect for the basic norms of international law and international relations, serious interference in China’s internal affairs, which have hurt the feelings of the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang. They are strongly condemned and resolutely opposed by the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang!

What needs to be pointed out is that it requires very strict law, evidence and procedure to identify “genocide”. It cannot be designated simply by the imagination and random talk of certain countries, organizations and individuals. The “genocide” accusation against China made by western anti-China forces wishes to create turmoil in Xinjiang and drag China back to the days of frequent terrorist attacks to reach their goal of “curbing China through Xinjiang”. According to the data of the 7th National Population Census, the population of Xinjiang, including the ethnic minority population which contains Uygurs, maintained a steady growth rate in the past 10 years. Where can you find a “genocide” with a steadily increased population in the world?

As a matter of fact, certain western countries are the ones that genuinely implemented “genocide”. History cannot be altered. The systematic ethnic cleansing and massacre of Indians by the United States led to a sharp decrease in the Indian population from 5 million in 1492 to 250,000 in the early 20th century. After Britain established its colonies in Australia in 1804, it slaughtered local indigenous peoples in madness. By the time the Australian Federation was founded in 1901, the number of Australian indigenous people dropped from 300,000 to 60,000. Let’s look at the history of China, especially the modern history of China. Since 1840, the United States, Britain and other Western powers have repeatedly invaded China, committed heavy crimes against the Chinese people and had Chinese people’s blood on their hands. But now, they have the delusion to accuse Xinjiang of “genocide” through their faked “tribunal”. What a shameful act!

We have noticed that there have emerged some objective and rational statements from the international community recently. Some people with insight from law, academic circles and media sector have uttered their voice of justice. Jeffrey, President of the United Nations Network for Sustainable Development Solutions, wrote that the United States’ allegations of “genocide” in Xinjiang, China were haste, irresponsible and unfounded. Former United Nations Senior Expert on Human Rights, Zayas, and Honorary Professor of International Law, Princeton University, Farke, published a joint article Reflection on the Ultimate Crime--Genocide on the United States independent website. In the article, they pointed out that the “genocide” accusation against Xinjiang is driven by ideology and has no proof to back it. It will damage the authority and credibility of the US in turn. Swedish Peace and Future Research Foundation published a thematic report entitled Identification of “Genocide” in Xinjiang Has Other Motives, noting that the publishers and writers of the so-called “genocide” “reports”in the US think-tank have clear political inclination. These “reports” have severe problems of violating academic norms and have deliberately ignored the definition of “genocide” and key factors like terrorism. Therefore, the Swedish Peace and Future Research Foundation holds that the so-called “reports” has no credibility in it and their legal basis is astonishingly weak. The US Foreign Policy website published an article saying that although the Trump administration identified the measures adopted by China in Xinjiang constitute “genocide”, the Office of Legal Adviser of the Department of State, US, believes that there are not enough evidence to support this identification. Russian Newspaper, Japan’s Internal Business, Denmark’s Journal of Reason, Switzerland’s World Weekly, New Zurich News, Brazil’s Value Report, and South Africa’s Pretoria News all published reports or articles that pointed out the so-called “genocide” against Xinjiang are based on the prejudice and hostility towards China. Some people ignored the achievements of the Chinese government in governing Xinjiang and pointed their finger at the human rights condition in Xinjiang out of political plot and created negative image of China to carry out the promotion beneficial to themselves and psychological warfare.

It can be concluded that the international power of justice are gaining momentum, while the slanders and smears of the western anti-China forces are on the opposite of the international community, as well as the opposite of human morality and conscience. They are doomed to fail.

Xu Guixiang: False testimony 28, accusing Chinese government of “prohibiting foreign journalists’ report in Xinjiang”. I’m going to give you relevant information on this question.

Xu Guixiang: Xinjiang is an open region. According to the provisions of Regulations of the People’s Republic of China on Interviewing Foreign Permanent News Agencies and Foreign Journalists, foreign journalists can go to Xinjiang for reports under the premise of abiding by Chinese laws and performing the corresponding procedures. The accusation that Chinese government prohibits foreign journalists’ report in Xinjiang doesn’t exist.

Since the end of 2018, 1,800 plus people from more than 100 countries’ delegations including officials of international organizations, diplomats, media journalists, religious leaders visited Xinjiang. From September 3 to 7, journalists from National Broadcasting Company(NBC) visited Xinjiang. In December, 2020, journalists from British Broadcasting Company(BBC) visited Kuqa and other places in Xinjiang. In April, 2021, foreign media such as Associated Press went to many places in Xinjiang including Urumqi, Kashgar, Turpan for news report. When the foreign journalists arrived in Xinjiang, we provided their report with relevant support and conveniences.

These are the 28 attacks and slanders against Xinjiang launched by western anti-China forces led by the US.After our pertinent introduction, I believe each of you has gained a better understanding of reality and falsification in Xinjiang. In the eyes of certain Western anti-China forces, Xinjiang is a place where “human rights are violated”. But the real Xinjiang has nothing in common with their depiction. Now, its the golden season for people in north and south Tianshan Mountain in Xinjiang to reap the year’s harvest.

Bi Haibo: Thank Xinjiang for bringing us the detailed information. Now, the floor is open for questions.

First, let’s invite questions from the People’s Daily.

People’s Daily: Under the current complex overseas counter-terrorism situation, will the government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region take additional security measures in Xinjiang?

Xu Guixiang: Let’s invite Mr. Elijan Anayat, the spokesperson of the Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, to answer this question.

Elijan Anayat: Xinjiang has been the forefront of China’s counter-terrorism. Over some time in the past, Xinjiang was deeply under the combined influence of separatists, religious extremists and terrorists. Terrorist attacks occurred frequently, which have been detrimental to the life and property of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang.

In the face of the severe counter-terrorism situation, Xinjiang has taken a series of policies and measures and achieved remarkable results. There have been no violent terrorist cases and incidents for more than four consecutive years in Xinjiang. At present, Xinjiang enjoys high-quality economic development, social stability and harmony, cultural prosperity and development, and people of all ethnic groups are able to live and work in peace and contentment with a much stronger sense of gain, happiness and security.

No matter how the external situation changes, as long as the threat of separatists, religious extremists and terrorists exists and as long as the Western Anti-China forces refuse to give up their evil designs, we will continue to take strict prevention and severe crackdown measures according to law, and remain vigilant at all times. Any force that dares to challenge the bottom line of the safety of life and property of the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang is doomed to end in failure!

Bi Haibo: Now, I would like to invite questions from Global Times.

Global Times: Recently, the website of the British Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Development updated “Overseas Business Risk: China” about Xinjiang section, presumptuously claiming that the British side is seriously concerned about the widespread and systematic human rights violations in Xinjiang, including the extrajudicial detention of more than 1 million Uygurs and other ethnic minorities, restrictions on minority cultures, religions and language, extensive monitoring, and the implementation of forced labor and forced contraception and sterilization for Uygurs and other ethnic minorities in this region? What do you think about this?

Xu Guixiang: Let me answer this question. We notice that China has repeatedly briefed the UK on the development of Xinjiang and issues related to Xinjiang, and clarified its position, asking the UK to treat the development of Xinjiang objectively and properly handle issues related to Xinjiang. However, the British side turned a deaf ear and recently updated the Xinjiang part of the “Overseas Business Risk: China” on the website of the British Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Development, taking the opportunity to distort and slander the human rights in Xinjiang and China’s policies on Xinjiang. We are strongly dissatisfied with and firmly opposed to it. What the British side said is completely inconsistent with the facts. It should immediately correct the mistakes and take measures to eliminate the negative effects.

Bi Haibo: For time’s sake, I’ll give the floor to the Chinese Embassy in the UK.

Host from the Chinese Embassy in the UK: Now, let’s invite questions from China Global Television Network (CGTN).

CGTN: The So-called “Uygur tribunal” wants to resume its action this week. It seems that Chinese government’s repeated denying has not changed its allegations. How will you solve this problem?

Xu Guixiang: Let me answer this question. The human rights situation in Xinjiang is beyond reproach. On July 14 this year, the Information Office of the State Council Information Office of the People’s Republic of China issued the White Paper on Respecting and Protecting of the Rights of All Ethnic Groups in Xinjiang, which authoritatively and systematically introduced civil rights, political rights, economic rights, cultural rights, social rights, women’s and children’s rights and the right to freedom of religious belief. We suggest that relevant scholars and lawyers of the West read it seriously.

Why don’t they change their views? It is because they hold ideological prejudice from the heart and wear tinted glasses to observe everything in Xinjiang. To put it bluntly, they have their ulterior motives. The conclusion, drawn with such methods of studying problems from such an angle of observation, cannot be objective, true, and certainly not correct. Such scholars and lawyers are actually accomplices of anti-China politicians in the United States and the West. Their research reports are just tools for political manipulation by anti-China forces in the United States and the West, and therefore, are not academic, professional and credible.

People often say that you can never wake up a person who pretends to be sleeping. But most people in the world are sober. We believe that the sunshine of truth will dispel the haze of lies. We will, as always, protect the basic human rights of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang, tell well the story of the development and progress of human rights in Xinjiang, and present the image of stability and prosperity of Xinjiang. Just as Dante, a famous Italian poet in the Renaissance period, says, go your own way; let others talk!

Host: Now, let’s invite questions from China Daily.

China Daily: Hello everyone, this is China Daily. The question is for Ambassador Zheng. Recently, British parliamentarians wrote the foreign secretary about the problem of “forced labor” in Xinjiang, China, which may cause people’s concern about the export of Xinjiang. However, according to the relevant repot of the South China Morning Post, the EU’s import of products including cotton from Xinjiang has more than doubled compared with the first half of this year. What’s your comment?

Zheng Zeguang: Let me answer your question. First of all, it is totally groundless to say that there are “forced labor” and “genocide” in Xinjiang. This is only an excuse they use to impose restrictions and sanctions on China’s economic and trade relations with other countries. This is totally unreasonable. China’s position on safeguarding sovereignty, territorial integrity and security and safeguarding the well-being of the people is unswerving. These so-called restrictions and sanctions are bound to hurt those who impose sanctions.

We are firmly opposed to the relevant restrictive measures currently taken by the British government. We urge the British side to see clearly the facts in Xinjiang and the purpose of those anti-China forces. For example, the organizers of the so-called “Uygur tribunal” have ulterior motives behind them. Don’t be misled, don’t take actions that will damage the common interests of the people of the two countries, and don’t damage the friendship between the people of the two countries.

Just now, you have heard what we Chinese scholars have just shared about Xinjiang’s cotton export and other issues. Nowadays, the cotton industry in Xinjiang does not need much hand-picking anymore, and mainly depends on mechanical cotton picking, so accusations of forced labor in the cotton industry in Xinjiang are totally groundless, which we have ample evidence to prove. We are confident in the economic and social development of Xinjiang. We also have confidence in the rationality of the British people and believe that they will not be misled. Don’t underestimate the masses, for they have sharp eyes. Those who keep spreading rumors about China must remember this. Thank you.

Host: Mr. Xu, anything else you want to add?

Xu Guixiang: Ambassador Zheng has just said very well about this issue. Here I want to say a few more words. The cotton in Xinjiang is white, but the hearts of some British politicians are black. There is no problem of “forced labor” in the cotton industry in Xinjiang, from planting to picking, from processing to export. A large number of facts and data published have proved this. Cotton farmers working in the fields and workers of all ethnic groups busy in factory workshops have also confirmed this with their own personal experience.

The practice of some British politicians is disgusting. It is a wrong move based on fiction, and it is an act of harming others without benefiting themselves. We also noticed that Finbarr Bermingham, a columnist of the South China Morning Post, published an article, pointing out that according to the evaluation of China’s customs data, Exports of Xinjiang, China to the EU soared 131% year-on-year in the first six months of this year. He also said on social media that in the first six months of this year, British imports from Xinjiang China increased by 192.2% year-on-year. This shows that not all enterprises in Britain would follow the wrong “baton”. The so-called sanctions are just a trick for some Western politicians to entertain themselves.

Host: Now, let’s invite questions from Phoenix TV.

Phoenix TV: thank you very much. I have follow-up questions about Xinjiang for Ambassador Zheng. You know that many British media report that the so-called “Uygur tribunal” will hold a new round of “hearing” in London. What’s your comment? Do you think the British government will also show its support to the so-called “Uygur tribunal”? If the British side imposes further sanctions on China because of this “hearing”, will China take further actions?

Zheng Zeguang: First, I would like to say that this “tribunal” is a “fake tribunal”, a political manipulation, destined to lead nowhere and that the noise it makes will eventually dissipate. It will not change the Chinese government’s policies on Xinjiang which will be sustainable. It will not prevent China’s development and progress, nor will it prevent people of Xinjiang, China from achieving socioeconomic development. Besides, it will not deceive or mislead the British people and people of the world, nor will it deceive them for too long. As I just said, they should not underestimate the judgment of the people, even in some western countries.

Secondly, this so-called “Uygur Tribunal” and the noise it makes are destructive because it will guide some sectors in society and hinder the public from knowing the true picture of Xinjiang. This is why the Chinese government has issued a solemn protest to the British government. We urge the British government to take action to prevent the organizers of this so-called “Uygur tribunal” from continuing such malicious act.

The British government tells us that it is not a participant in the “tribunal”, and that the “tribunal” is a non-governmental entity, that is, it has no legal power to make decisions. But the question is, why should this organization be allowed to continue spreading rumors about China? If it continues to do so, the friendship and trust between China and Britain will also be undermined.

Bi Haibo: Thank you, Ambassador Zheng, and thank you, my colleagues at the British Embassy and all the journalists. That’s all for today’s press conference on Xinjiang related issues. The relevant information and records will be published on Xinjiang Tianshannet as soon as possible. We will hold the next press conference on Xinjiang related issues in due time. Thank you.

Xu Guixiang: Thank you. Bye.

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