China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi has denied criticism of the „re-education camps“ for Uyghurs in the Chinese province of Xinjiang. „These are internal affairs of China,“ said Wang Yi after talks with Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) in Beijing. China is in its westernmost province about the „prevention of terrorism“, the camps are a „preventive measure“. The Uighurs are a Muslim Turkic people, who live in the former East Turkestan.
Maas in his talks with the Chinese leadership demanded more transparency in the conflict over the human rights of the Uyghurs. To kick off his two-day inaugural visit to Beijing, the SPD politician said: „We can not accept ‚re-education camps.“ According to officially unconfirmed reports, up to one million Uighurs are said to be in the camps.
The Chinese Embassy in Germany had accused the Bundestag and the Federal Government shortly before the visit of Maas of a „blatant interference in internal affairs and a gross violation of the sovereignty of China“. The trigger was a debate in which MPs denounced violations of Uyghur human rights.
The People’s Congress of the Region in Northwest China had allowed local authorities by law to „educate and transform“ people who are considered extremist without trial in training centers.