East Turkestan: China Urged to Free Kadeer’s Son
Amnesty International has demanded the Chinese Government to release Ablikim Abdureyim, son of the prominent Uyghur leader, who is detained, despite his declining health conditions, as retaliation against the actions of Rebiya Kadeer in support of human rights and freedom in China.
Below is an article published by Agence France Presse
Amnesty International on Monday [20 December 2001] urged China to free the son of exiled Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer after he said he was tortured in prison and in declining health.
Kadeer, a businesswoman turned campaigner for the mostly Muslim ethnic group in the western Xinjiang region, was freed in 2005 and moved to the United States. She says China has retaliated against her family for her activism.
Ablikim Abdureyim, one of Kadeer's 11 children, told relatives who visited him in prison last week that he was mistreated, placed in solitary confinement and that his health has been deteriorating, supporters said.
Amnesty International said Abdureyim was confined after refusing to sign a document denying that he witnessed an unspecified "controversial incident" in the Urumqi city prison.
Catherine Baber, the rights group's Asia-Pacific deputy director, urged China to release Abdureyim and called his treatment "the latest example of systematic human rights abuses suffered by China's Uighur population."
"The Chinese authorities must investigate allegations that Ablikim Abdureyim has been tortured and make sure he has access to medical help for any injuries he may have suffered," she said.
Abdureyim was sentenced in 2007 to nine years in prison for "secessionist activities." Another of Kadeer's sons, Alim, is also in prison on charges of tax evasion.
Kadeer, in a recent statement, said the world "must not remain silent" about the treatment of her children and other Uighurs.
"The Chinese regime has held my family hostage in an attempt to silence calls for basic human rights for Uighurs," she said.
Many Uighurs say China has stifled their political, religious and cultural rights through communist rule and an influx of migrants from the Han majority. China says it has brought development to the arid western region.
Tensions boiled over in July 2009 in Urumqi when nearly 200 people died and another 1,700 were injured in China's worst inter-ethnic clashes in years.
Two of Kadeer's children appeared on state television and blamed her for the unrest. Kadeer denounced the allegations and accused China of coercing her children to speak against her.