The White House has slammed China for its continued violation of human rights against minority communities.
White House Press Secretary Karen Jean-Pierre during her daily news conference on Thursday welcomed the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights report on Xinjiang that was released the previous night.
The report said China’s discriminatory detention of Uyghurs and other mostly Muslim ethnic groups in the western region of Xinjiang may constitute crimes against humanity.
”The report deepens our grave concern regarding the ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity that China is perpetrating. Our position on the atrocities in Xinjiang has been clearly demonstrated with our words and in our actions,” Jean-Pierre said.
The Biden administration has taken concrete measures and the President has rallied allies and partners, including the G7, to ensure all global supply chains are free from the use of forced labour including from Xinjiang, she said.
”We will continue to work closely with partners and the international community to hold China accountable, and we will call on China to immediately cease committing these atrocities, release those unjustly detained, account for those disappeared, and allow independent investigators full and unhindered access to Xinjiang, Tibet, and across China,” Jean-Pierre said.
In a statement, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the August 31st report by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights outlines in alarming details the human rights violations and abuses occurring in Xinjiang.
”This report deepens and reaffirms our grave concern regarding the ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity that PRC government authorities are perpetrating against Uyghurs, who are predominantly Muslim, and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups in Xinjiang,” he said.
The conclusion that the authorities’ mass arbitrary detention of Uyghurs and others may have committed crimes against humanity corroborates what human rights advocates and members of the Uyghur diaspora have documented for years, said Senator Jeff Merkley and Representative James P McGovern, chair and co-chair respectively of the bipartisan and bicameral Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC).
”In doing so, the report sends a powerful message that the international community, including the UN, must act now to ensure accountability for the atrocity crimes perpetrated by Chinese officials in the XUAR. With the UN Human Rights Council preparing to meet later this month, it is more important than ever that world leaders identify and hold to account the officials responsible for human rights violations in the XUAR and ensure justice for the victims of these abuses. As the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights concluded, ‘the conditions remain in place for serious violations to continue and recur’,” he said.