Settler Colonialism and the Path toward Cultural Genocide in Xinjiang

In: Global Responsibility to Protect
Michael Clarke Associate Professor, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia; Visiting Fellow, Australia-China Relations Institute, University of Technology Sydney, Sydney, Australia,

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The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (xuar) is the site of the largest mass repression of an ethnic and/or religious minority in the world today characterised by extra-judicial detention of Uyghurs in ‘re-education’ centres, pervasive surveillance, and repression of Uyghur ethnic identity. While Beijing frames such draconian measures as necessary ‘counter-terrorism’ measures, the intersection between concern for the ‘welfare’ of subject populations and the desire to eradicate ‘defective’ elements of cultural identity central to the ‘re-education’ system in Xinjiang betray the fundamentally colonial nature of the Chinese Communist Party’s (ccp) endeavours in the region.

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