Uyghur and Tibetan Communities Hold Joint Demonstration for Freedom of Religion in Tibet and East Turkestan
Photo courtesy of World Uyghur Congress
On 16 September 2016, the World Uyghur Congress along with International Campaign for Tibet and the Tibetan Community in Switzerland & Liechtenstein held a protest for freedom of religion, in front of the UN, in Geneva. The demonstration showed that the Muslim and Buddhist communities stand up together against continued human rights abuses in East Turkestan and Tibet by the Chinese government.
Below is an article published by the World Uyghur Congress:
The World Uyghur Congress along with the International Campaign for Tibet is holding a demonstration march in Geneva, Switzerland, from Palais Wilson to the Broken Chair Monument across from the Palais des Nations beginning at 11:00 on September 16th.
The primary purpose of the march and subsequent demonstration will be to bring attention to ongoing human rights violations against Uyghurs and Tibetans, and more specifically, China’s efforts in Geneva to silence civil society from speaking out at international fora like the UN Human Rights Council.
The demonstration will also target China’s continued and worsening restrictions on religious practice taking place in both Tibet and East Turkestan. Uyghurs have been sentenced to inordinately long jail terms simply for undertaking quotidian religious practices like basic prayer at home or fasting during the holy month of Ramadan – ostensibly protected by China’s own Constitution.
The recent introduction of discriminatory “counter-terror” legislation that targets the Uyghur and Tibetan populations in their entirety also remains troubling as well as the introduction of its repressive Foreign NGO Management Law, considered by most to stand as an instrument to further curtail the work of civil society in the country.
We hope that in carrying out this march, the Uyghur and Tibetan cases will be made more visible to the international community dealing with China.