U.S. imposes sanctions, visa restrictions on Chinese officials over Xinjiang human rights abuses

by WorldTribune Staff, July 9, 2020

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Thursday the U.S. has imposed sanctions and visa restrictions on three senior Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials over the continued human rights abuses targeting minority groups in China’s Xinjiang province.

Reports by several media outlets and human rights organizations have noted that China is detaining over 1 million Muslims in re-education camps.

“The United States is taking action today against the horrific and systematic abuses in Xinjiang and calls on all nations who share our concerns about the CCP’s attacks on human rights and fundamental freedoms to join us in condemning this behavior,” Pompeo said.

The three CCP officials sanctioned Under Section 7031(c) of the FY 2020 Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act are Chen Quanguo, the Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR); Zhu Hailun, Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Political and Legal Committee (XPLC); and Wang Mingshan, the current Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau (XPSB).

As a result, the three CCP officials and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States.

“The United States will not stand idly by as the CCP carries out human rights abuses targeting Uyghurs, ethnic Kazakhs, and members of other minority groups in Xinjiang, to include forced labor, arbitrary mass detention, and forced population control, and attempts to erase their culture and Muslim faith,” Pompeo said.

Related: White House warns corporations on supply chains from Chinese slave labor, July 8, 2020

Pompeo said the U.S. is also placing additional visa restrictions on other CCP officials “believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, the unjust detention or abuse of Uyghurs, ethnic Kazakhs, and members of other minority groups in Xinjiang pursuant to the policy announced in October 2019 under Section 212(a)(3)(C) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Their family members may also be subject to these restrictions.”

These U.S. Treasury Department announced on Thursday that it is designating the XPSB, as well as four current or former Chinese officials – Chen Quanguo; Zhu Hailun; Wang Mingshan; and Huo Liujun – for their roles in human rights abuse.

These Treasury designations are pursuant to President Donald Trump’s Executive Order 13818, “Blocking the Property of Persons Involved in Serious Human Rights Abuse or Corruption,” which builds upon and implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.

“Before ramping up the CCP’s campaign of repression in Xinjiang, Chen oversaw extensive abuses in Tibetan areas, using many of the same horrific practices and policies CCP officials currently employ in Xinjiang,” Pompeo’s statement said.

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