For Immediate Release
April 10th, 2020 11:30 pm EDT
Campaign for Uyghurs (CFU)
As the weeks of self-quarantine continue to go by, we cannot help but be eternally grateful for having the ability to shelter ourselves from this virus in the comforts of our homes. All thanks to the frontline workers who are risking their lives to keep us healthy, safe and our shelves stocked. These are the unsung heroes who deserve our utmost respect, appreciation, and care.
Uyghurs in the DMV (Washington D.C, Maryland and Virginia) area have made strong efforts to contribute to their communities in the U.S. The Eerkins Uyghur Cuisine (EUC) and Dolan Uyghur Cuisine (DUC) restaurants have been providing free meals to medical staff. On April 7th the DUC restaurant delivered 120 meals to local hospitals. The owner of the EUC restaurant, Naeem Jan said he was inspired to help because “the hospital staff is working so hard. They are our heroes. The least we can do is provide them with food while they are busy helping others.”
Moreover, the World Uyghur Congress has called on the global community, including Uyghurs and non-Uyghurs, as well as organizations, associations, humanitarian organizations, and anyone who is able to donate and financially contribute to the support of the Uyghurs refugees who are struggling to make ends meet.
These acts of compassion and contributions are a part of the invaluable Uyghur culture. Alms (zakat) is a pillar of Islam wherein it is the duty of every Muslim to do charitable work. However, due to ubiquitous Chinese surveillance, this practice was ceased because the CCP deemed it acts of crime and Islamic extremism. Going as far as sending Uyghurs who practice this pillar to concentration camps. Notwithstanding, Uyghurs in the diaspora are actively taking steps to preserve the traditions of their ancestors by practicing their cultural rights in the safety of democratic countries like the United States and abroad.
The recently released PBS Frontline documentary “China Under Cover” reveals a dialogue with a local Chinese official in Urumqi who stated that, “[Uyghurs] don’t have human rights. It’s not about violating; they just don’t have human rights.”
As world leaders continue their efforts remedying the destruction caused by the virus in their countries, China has taken advantage of this deflection to continue the extermination of Uyghurs in East Turkistan (ET). The CCP is sending ethnic Uyghurs into China proper to open up factories in cities ravaged by the virus. Clearly demonstrating that “Uyghur lives don’t matter.” While the government implements stricter stay-at-home orders on its citizens and performs total city lockdowns, it actively carries out an exodus of Uyghur youth. Their lives are sacrificed in the name of the economy; to continue productions, despite the high risk of infection. The proof lies in the countless TikTok and DouYin videos pouring out of Xinjiang showcasing this.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) sites the origin of the coronavirus (COVID-19) to be from Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. The earliest coronavirus case was that of a 55-year old Hubei resident who fell ill with the virus in mid-November 2019 in China. On December 30th, 2019, doctors from Wuhan, Dr. Li Wenliang and Dr. Xie Linka used the CCP monitored WeChat to inform their collogues of a pneumonic virus outbreak. The next day, the health authorities of Wuhan conceded that there is a pathogenic viral infection. However, despite the health risk, Wuhan held a 40,000-person celebration. At this point, the number of cases had already tripled. Even at such high infection rates, China failed to release any official government records concerning this virus and the media blackout makes it impossible to access the clues which may help determine the speed of the spread and the real number of cases. Consequently, these meant countries were way underprepared to manage the rapid spread and growing rate of infection.
“The depths to which Beijing will sink to retain its grasp on power are well known; but even now, in the face of a second outbreak, CCP officials persist with systemic repression, censorship, and outright thuggery to control the flow of information,” said U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn.
Dr. Li Wenliang was one of the “whistleblowers” who first warned people about the deadly virus. As a result of his efforts, he was requested to appear at the Public Security Bureau where he was to sign a letter that charged him with “making false comments” that “severely disturbed the social order.” Despite his attempts to warn his colleagues to wear protective gear to avoid infection, in the first weeks in January, the Chinese government insisted that the virus was only transmitted when individuals are exposed to an infected animal. Furthermore, the World Health Organization (WHO) was backing this misinformation by also claiming the virus was not contagious.
In addition to its lack of transparency which has put the world collectively in danger, China has also been found guilty of hoarding face masks and protective gear and then selling them abroad as “acts of charity”. Due to the scarcity of the much needed medical equipment, countries like the Czech Republic, Italy and Germany have had to place bans on the exports of masks, which the E.U. crisis management commissioner, Janez Lanercic stated “risk[s] undermining our collective approach to handle this crisis.”
China’s makes up half of the world’s supply of surgical masks. However, despite this, there have been videos circulating social media of Chinese nationals buying up surgical face masks abroad and hoarding them. China has also dedicated an entire propaganda campaign to make it look like they are the heroes in the midst of an outbreak that originated from one of its own cities. In fact, profiting off of sold medical equipment, such as PPE’s and ventilators. Making these “goodwill” packages of medical material a dubious contribution. Particularly due to the recent recall of medical equipment sent by China to European countries. Including Spain, one of the highest hit countries in Europe, the Netherlands, and Slovakia, amongst others. Collectively recalling over a million testing kits, and thousands of masks that “did not close over the face properly or had defective filters”
Three sets of the Chinese government’s leaked documents reveal Xi Jinping’s ability to mislead the international community about nature of China’s concentration camps. Yet, the global community seems to have quickly forgotten this.
“The most frustrating thing is that the world is not only turning a blind eye to China’s genocide in our homeland, but also actively praising China for the tainted, ‘strings attached’ medical assistance they are giving” said CFU’s Executive Director, Rushan Abbas. Following up with, “I now fear that with the Coronavirus, Uyghurs are being forgotten. I fear that no matter how much Uyghurs scream for help, not enough is being done. We cannot let China get away with this. More needs to be done. Real tangible actions need to be taken….and it needs to be done now. Before it is too late.”