by WorldTribune Staff, July 3, 2020
As part of a sweeping campaign to curb its Muslim population, China’s Communist Party is forcing sterilization, abortion and birth control on women in the Xinjiang detention camps.
Even as it encourages some of the country’s Han majority to have more children, China is taking draconian measures to slash birth rates among Uighurs and other minorities, The Associated Press reported on June 30.
“While individual women have spoken out before about forced birth control, the practice is far more widespread and systematic than previously known,” according to an AP investigation based on government statistics, state documents and interviews with 30 ex-detainees, family members and a former detention camp instructor.
The campaign over the past four years in the far west region of Xinjiang is leading to what some analysts are calling a form of “demographic genocide.”
Researchers found that, in 2018, 80 percent of all new IUD placements in China were performed in Xinjiang province. Only 1.8 percent of the country’s population live there.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) routinely subjects minority women to pregnancy checks, and forces intrauterine devices, sterilization and even abortion on hundreds of thousands, the report said. Even while the use of IUDs and sterilization has fallen nationwide, it is rising sharply in Xinjiang.
“The population control measures are backed by mass detention both as a threat and as a punishment for failure to comply,” the report noted. “Having too many children is a major reason people are sent to detention camps, with the parents of three or more ripped away from their families unless they can pay huge fines. Police raid homes, terrifying parents as the police search for hidden children.”
The AP detailed the story of Gulnar Omirzakh, a Chinese-born Kazakh. After Omirzakh had her third child, the government ordered her to get an IUD inserted. Two years later, in January 2018, four officials in military camouflage came knocking at her door anyway.
They gave Omirzakh, the penniless wife of a detained vegetable trader, three days to pay a $2,685 fine for having more than two children. If she didn’t, they warned, she would join her husband and a million other ethnic minorities locked up in internment camps — often for having too many children.
“God bequeaths children on you. To prevent people from having children is wrong,” said Omirzakh. “They want to destroy us as a people.”
Joanne Smith Finley, who works at Newcastle University in the UK, said: “It’s genocide, full stop. It’s not immediate, shocking, mass-killing on the spot type genocide, but it’s slow, painful, creeping genocide. These are direct means of genetically reducing the Uighur population.”
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement: “We call on the Chinese Communist Party to immediately end these horrific practices and ask all nations to join the United States in demanding an end to these dehumanizing abuses.”