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Trump approves sanctions targeting Uighur persecutors

An Indonesia protester wears a mask supporting Uighurs at a Jakarta rally in 2019. Associated Press/Photo by Dita Alangkara

Trump approves sanctions targeting Uighur persecutors

The Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act is the strongest action yet by any nation over China’s mistreatment of the ethnic minority group. The legislation, which President Donald Trump signed into law on Wednesday, will penalize officials who arbitrarily detain and torture Uighurs and other minorities in the Xinjiang region, freezing their assets and preventing their entry into the United States. Since 2017, The Chinese government has held more than 1 million Uighurs in reeducation camps, yet it has repeatedly rejected the abuse claims and insisted they are attending vocational training centers.

What has Trump said about the Uighur detentions? In the past, the president has not publicly spoken out against China’s human rights abuses. An excerpt from former national security adviser John Bolton’s upcoming book describes him telling Chinese President Xi Jinping last year “that Xi should go ahead with building the camps, which Trump thought was exactly the right thing to do.”

Dig deeper: Read Julia A. Seymour’s report on the act in World Tour.

Onize Ohikere

Onize is WORLD’s Africa reporter. She is a World Journalism Institute graduate and earned a journalism degree from Minnesota State University–Moorhead. Onize resides in Abuja, Nigeria.



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