Libertas Council Hosts Ambassadors’ Briefing on Xinjiang

On April 10, 2024, the Libertas Council hosted an Ambassadors’ Briefing to bring together foreign diplomats to discuss Xinjiang and how best to engage with China. Speakers included Rushan Abbas, founder of the Campaign for Uyghurs, and Olivia Enos, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute.

IMG 0291Abbas’ moving testimony outlined the plight of the Uyghur people, which she described as undergoing the “most complex and systematic genocide.” She defined contours of a variety of repressive policies, including the surveillance system, suppression of religion, and crimes against women. She also shared the story of her sister who was arrested six days after Abbas spoke publicly about the genocide, and remains interned in a “reeducation” camp. She asked policymakers and diplomats alike to remember the human element, the names, faces, and stories of the individuals who are being repressed. While the large numbers are shocking, each one represents a story and a life.

Enos’ discussion provided additional context for the motivations of the Chinese Communist Party that justify the repression, namely internal stability and sovereignty goals. She then outlined a number of recommended polices, including publicly naming the genocide for what it is, creating policies to rapidly resettle refugees, and coordinating the international response.

The Libertas Council’s Ambassador John Cotton Richmond closed the Briefing with a statement that human rights policy should be implemented consistently, and not based on convenience or fear of retaliation.

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