CFU Demands Accountability for July 5th Urumchi Massacre



July 5, 2024, 10:00 AM


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Washington, D.C. – Campaign for Uyghurs (CFU) reiterates its call for justice and accountability as we commemorate the 15th anniversary of the July 5th Urumchi Massacre. On that tragic day in 2009, thousands of Uyghurs took to the streets in peaceful assembly, mourning the Uyghur men and women brutally killed in the Shaoguan Massacre the previous month. The CCP,  in a fashion reminiscent of their actions at Tiananmen Square two decades prior, responded with lethal force and mass arrests.

Chinese authorities’ suppression with tear gas, stun batons, and live ammunition led to unrest among the protesters, which marked the start of the tragedy. Official Chinese media later portrayed the demonstration as a riot orchestrated by U.S.-based Uyghur rights activist Rebiya Kadeer without mentioning the Shaoguan incident. In the following days and months, countless Uyghurs were shot, arbitrarily detained, and forcibly disappeared by government forces and Han Chinese mobs. Chinese authorities conducted mass detentions and forcible disappearances of Uyghurs. Security measures were heightened across the region, with checkpoints and curfews imposed. The exact number of deaths and casualties remains unknown, and the CCP continues to disseminate propaganda about these incidents.

Executive Director Rushan Abbas reflected on this event, stating, “The Urumchi Massacre is a stark reminder that the CCP will not tolerate any dissent or pursuit of justice and human rights. For decades, the regime has systematically labeled the Uyghur community’s religious expressions and longing for freedom as ‘extremism’ and ‘separatism,’ laying the groundwork for justifying their genocidal policies. In 2009, rather than addressing the legitimate human rights concerns raised by the Uyghur community, the Chinese government evaded accountability with propaganda and brute force. This led to the deaths of countless innocent Uyghurs and set a dangerous precedent for the ongoing genocide we witness today.”

Systematic repression, including mass detentions, forced labor, and cultural erasure, continues to this day. CFU stands in strong solidarity with the victims and families affected by the Urumchi Massacre, demanding that those responsible for this brutal act of violence and those unjustly detained are released. CFU calls on governments, international organizations, and civil society to prioritize human rights and intensify pressure on the CCP to end its systematic persecution of Uyghurs and Turkic communities in East Turkistan.

To commemorate this date, CFU, along with the Uyghur Human Rights Project, World Uyghur Congress, and the Uyghur American Association invites everyone to join us in a demonstration in front of the Chinese Embassy in Washington, D.C., on Friday, July 5th, 2024. It is with a unified voice we will demand that the CCP’s atrocities in East Turkistan end once and for all.



Campaign for Uyhgurs

We defend the human rights of uyghur people and the free world by exposing and confronting the chinese government's genocide, and empowering uyghur women and youth in the diaspora.

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