East Turkestan: Rebiya at US Congress
Uyghur human rights activist Rebiya Kadeer has spoken at the US Congress to highlight the forced movement of young Uyghur women to eastern China, with many ending up in forced prostitution.
Below is an article published by Reuters:
Rebiya Kadeer, jailed for more than five years for championing the rights of the Muslim Uighurs before being sent into exile in the United States in 2005, called for U.S. help in stopping a program she said had already removed more than 240,000 people, mostly women, from Xinjiang.
"Local authorities consider the transfer of Uighur women into
Kadeer, nominated for the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize, told the Congressional Human Rights Caucus the women being transferred under the guise of "employment opportunities" were single and ranged in age from 16 to 25.
She said they were largely taken from southern parts of Xinjiang, where the Uighur population was still in the majority.
"Already, hundreds of thousands of young Uighur women have been forcibly transferred from East Turkestan into
The women faced harsh treatment with 12-hour work days and often saw wages withheld for months, Kadeer said, describing the women as "cheap slave labor and potential sex workers."
Many Uighurs in Xinjiang "see this as one of the most humiliating policies to date" by Chinese authorities, she said. Many suspect that the government policy is to get them to marry majority Han Chinese in
Kadeer appealed to the
The Chinese embassy in