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Post Tagged with: "Aziz Isa Elkun"

 
  • Keeping the Uyghur Culture Alive in Exile

    by RUTH INGRAM 03/03/2021 Non-Chinese culture is repressed or reduced to a tourist attraction in Xinjiang. But exile and sorrow have produced a flurry of poetry and creativity among the diaspora. Strange bedfellows; tear gas and poets, tasers and writers, electric cattle prods, handcuffs and artists; folklorists and pepper spray. But when orders come down from the top to break Uyghur lineage, break their roots, break their connections, and break their origins, and CCP procurement figures for a secret network of transformation through education camps include instruments of torture, the pieces of the puzzle start to make sense. No one willingly walks into the annihilation of their culture. Unreasonable force will be part of the deal. Not content with rounding up so-called “holy warriors,” “splittists” and “the politically dangerous” for Beijing’s euphemistically named “vocational training” program, more than 400 academics have also been dragged into the black hole of internment and the disappeared since the start of a program of cultural annihilation, which began in 2017. Unlike most Uyghurs who were corralled into 24/7 Chinese language classes and political indoctrination, these university professors, writers, poets, singers, and dancers are fluent Mandarin speakers and often loyal Party members. Accused of being two-faced traitors and half-hearted supporters of the regime, these intellectuals’ only crime is their love for Uyghur history and culture, and their desire to see their nation flourish. They have all without exception vanished, and with them a vital bridge to the intangible cultural heritage they embody. Uyghur writers, poets, and academics gathered online last week to commemorate UNESCO’s International Mother Language Day and the 100-year anniversary of PEN International, a worldwide association of writers, founded in London in 1921 to promote literature and defend freedom of expression worldwide. Members of the Uyghur PEN Centre, one of more than one hundred and fifty mother tongue groups around the world, […]

     
  • Uyghur PEN Centre Online Revitalisation Project

    AZIZ ISA ELKUN Director of Uyghur PEN Centre Online Revitalisation ProjectBoard member of Uyghur PEN CentreEmail: aziz.isaa@gmail.com Aziz Isa Elkun is a writer, poet and academic. He was born in Shayar County in East Turkistan. He graduated from Urumchi University. He has been living in London since 2001. In London, he studied at Birkbeck University. He has published many poems, stories, and research articles in both Uyghur and and English language (www.azizisa.org). He has co-authored English language articles in Inner Asia and Central Asian Survey (‘Invitation to a Mourning Ceremony’: Perspectives on the Uyghur Internet and Islam by smartphone: reading the Uyghur Islamic revival on WeChat’). From 2013 to 2020, he worked as a Research Assistant on the “Sounding Islam China” and “Uyghur Meshrep in Kazakhstan” (www.meshrep.uk) projects based at SOAS, University of London. In 2012, he published his first book “Journey from Danube river to the Orkhun valley” in Uyghur. He is an active member of the exile Uyghur Community and founder of a Uyghur music group – the London Uyghur Ensemble. From September 2017 to October 2020, he has served as Secretary of the PEN International Uyghur Centre (www.uyghurpen.org). Since January 2021, he is working as a Director for the Uyghur PEN Centre Online Revitalisation Project. Uyghur PEN Centre Online Revitalisation Project As we all know, the current situation of the Uyghurs in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China is critical and deteriorating. Uyghur writers, poets, academics and artists who have tried to exercise their basic rights to freedom of expression have become primary targets and victims of China’s Xi Jinping’s genocidal policies in the region. The Uyghur PEN Centre, a subordinate diaspora PEN Centre of the PEN International family, has encountered many hurdles over the past 10 years like many other exile writers, however we are determined to continue our work and give […]

     
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  • Let’s write for freedom, let the “Wild pigeon” go free!

    Aziz Isa ElkunSecretary of PEN International Uyghur Centrewww.azizisa.org/en ئەركىنلىك ئۈچۈن يازايلى، «ياۋا كەپتەر» ئەركىن پەرۋاز قىلسۇن * Presentation at “The First International Conference of Four-PEN Platform” held in Malmö City hall in Sweden on 28 August 2017. Dear ladies and gentlemen, friends and colleagues of the PEN, I am honoured to be here to speak on behalf of the Uyghur PEN Center and for the Uyghur people who are almost entirely denied freedom of expression by China in this digital era of the 21st century ! As we are writers, translators and intellectuals in many artistic and cultural fields gathered here to find common ground – the slogan ‘no enemies, no hatred’ is easily said, but in the current reality for Uyghurs in their homeland of East Turkestan (also known as Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region), who are now suffering from unprecedented oppression and lack of rights, this is a hard goal to achieve. But the hate that separates us from each other – which may be based on race, religion or gender or other types of discrimination – will fail, because that hate is artificially bred by governments or other power holders to achieve their aims. The history of humanity always reminds us that tolerance and forgiveness are the only remedies that can achieve peace and prosperity for all of us in the global village. The author of the “Wild Pigeon” – Numuhammet Yasin – is still kept in a Chinese prison since 2004. I recently found an old newspaper dating back to 1992, in which our poems were published in the same column. But I am free and my colleague is in prison. I was at university in the same year as Ilham Tohti, and until few months before his arrest, we kept email exchange. Now he is sentenced […]

     
  • Contact us

    AZIZ ISA ELKUN Director of Uyghur PEN Centre Online Revitalisation ProjectBoard member of Uyghur PEN CentreEmail: aziz.isaa@gmail.com Aziz Isa Elkun is a writer, poet and academic. He was born in Shayar County in East Turkistan. He graduated from Urumchi University. He has been living in London since 2001. In London, he studied at Birkbeck University. He has published many poems, stories, and research articles in both Uyghur and and Englishlanguage (www.azizisa.org). He has co-authored English language articles in Inner Asia and Central Asian Survey (‘Invitation to a Mourning Ceremony’: Perspectives on the Uyghur Internet and Islam by smartphone: reading the Uyghur Islamic revival on WeChat’). From 2013 to 2020, he worked as a Research Assistant on the “Sounding Islam China” and “Uyghur Meshrep in Kazakhstan” (www.meshrep.uk) projects based at SOAS, University of London. In 2012, he published his first book “Journey from Danube river to the Orkhun valley” in Uyghur. He is an active member of the exile Uyghur Community and founder of a Uyghur music group – the London Uyghur Ensemble. From September 2017 to October 2020, he has served as Secretary of the PEN International Uyghur Centre (www.uyghurpen.org). Since January 2021, he is working as a Director for the Uyghur PEN Centre Online Revitalisation Project.

     
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