LAST >>International PEN Press << PREVIOUS


PEN Uyghur Center

International PEN Uyghur Center | 5 April 2011 UYPPress/01

Uyghur (Uighur) intellectuals including writers, web masters and journalists are being systematically persecuted in the aftermath of the “5th July” 2009 Urumchi ethnic conflict in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China


After the violent crackdown on the initially peaceful “5th July” Urumchi Uyghur protest by China’s police and other military armed forces, plus cutting off the region’s international telephone lines for 6 months and internet connections for a year, there was insufficient international condemnation of China’s gross human rights violations in the region. Since that incident, Uyghur intellectuals, including writers, web masters and journalists are being systematically persecuted by the Chinese authorities with the aim of assimilating and depriving the Uyghurs of their civil, cultural, and political rights that should be protected by any state according to the UN human rights declaration.

The crackdown on Uyghur intellectuals intensified after the 2009 protest, the number of sentences handed down to Uyghur intellectuals, and the execution of numerous Uyghur youths convicted of so-called “separatism”, are alarming. We – the International PEN Uyghur Centre - urge all international organisations including European Union Human Rights Commission, all governments of the European Union, and International NGOs, including International PEN Centre and Amnesty International to take urgent measures to protect Uyghur intellectuals from being further persecuted in China.

Here are the details of the few convicted Uyghur intellectuals that have been revealed by Chinese media, but there are hundreds of other Uyghur writers, webmasters and journalists whose whereabouts is still unknown, along with thousands of other Uyghur people arrested after the “5th July” protest.

Ghyret Niyaz Uyghur journalist

Dilshat Perhat Uyghur webmaster

Gulmire Imin web editor

Memetjan Abdulla Journalist

Tursunjan Hezi webmaster

In other July 2010 trials, Nijat Azat, manager of the Shabnam website, was sentenced to 10 years, and Nureli Obul, manager of Salkin website, was sentenced to three years. Based on interviews with relatives of the arrested, we calculate that more than 100 forum moderators who worked with Salkin Uyghur language website were arrested after July 5 2009.

We estimate that including the moderators of the other two major Uyghur language websites, Diyarim and Shebnem, at least 300 Uyghur Web moderators may be detained and jailed in the Uyghur region now. We are unable to confirm this estimate because of the Chinese government’s lack of transparency over the “5th July” 2009 protest.

We – the International PEN Uyghur centre - call again on the international community to conduct an independent investigation of all the allegations against the Chinese authorities’ extra judiciary punishment of Uyghur writers as well as Uyghur people connected to the “5th July” protest.

Yours sincerely

International PEN Uyghur Centre

20 March 2011

pen press home

Uyghur Pen

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict Valid CSS!     W3C Validated website. Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict & CSS Level 2.1.