World War 3 fears soar as countries rally against China ‘repression’- ‘Safety in numbers’

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In an annual report by Human Rights Watch (HRW), the group said in 2020 many world Governments found “safety in numbers” to rally against China. HRW added that the Governments reflected “Beijing’s inability to retaliate against the entire world”.

The report said persecutions of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia and Tibet, the crackdown in Hong Kong and China’s alleged attempts to cover up the coronavirus outbreak have worsened the situation due to President Xi Jinping.

HRW said: “This has been the darkest period for human rights in China since the 1989 massacre that ended the Tiananmen Square democracy movement.”

It added: “The Chinese Government’s authoritarianism was on full display in 2020 as it grappled with the deadly coronavirus outbreak first reported in Wuhan province.”

The human rights group also said “Beijing’s repression” has “deepened across the country”.

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Chinese authorities in the Xinjiang autonomous region have forced much of the Uighur Muslim population into re-education camps.

The HRW report said: “In Xinjiang, Turkic Muslims continue to be arbitrarily detained on the basis of their identity, while others are subjected to forced labour, mass surveillance, and political indoctrination.

“In Inner Mongolia, protests broke out in September when education authorities decided to replace Mongolian with Mandarin Chinese in a number of classes in the region’s schools.”

It claimed that Tibet authorities continue to “severely restrict” religious freedom and speech.

China also introduced a controversial national security law last year in Hong Kong after more six months of pro-democracy protests in 2019.

Since June, about 90 people have been arrested under the law.

The HRW said: “Since Xi Jinping came to power the repression has gotten worse and worse overall, in every aspect of Chinese society you can see how the party is becoming more intolerant of any kind of independent activity.”

The 386-page report on worldwide human rights focused heavily on China due to the international response to the worsening situation in the country.

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The human rights group criticised the EU’s response to China following the announcement of a trade deal between the two sides last year.

Kenneth Roth, head of HRW, said: “If the EU had been serious about ending forced labor in China’s Xinjiang province, they could have insisted on it before they agreed to the investment agreement.”

The UK, US, Australia, Canada and New Zealand all dropped extradition treaties with China following its crackdown on Hong Kong.

The HRW report said: “This growing international willingness to condemn the Chinese Government forced it to respond.”

They added how this caused China to finally confirm the number of Uighur and other Turkic Muslims detained in Xinjiang.

Beijing said 1.3 million people had gone through what it called “vocational training centres”.

Tory MP Tom Tugendhat lashed out at China last week over its human rights.

Writing on Twitter, Mr Tugendhat, also chair of the China Research Group, responded to a post from China’s embassy in the US which hailed Xinjiang as a place where women were “emancipated”.

China’s embassy said after “eradicating extremism” in the region, Uighur women were “more confident and independent”.

He said: “Claiming that ethnic cleansing is a form of gender equality is horrific.”

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