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Uyghur Groups Urge UN Member States to Vote “Yes” on Steps Towards Accountability

September 26, 2022

A group of 66 Uyghur organizations from 20 countries welcome a draft resolution tabled at the Human Rights Council calling for a debate on the Uyghur issue, and urges governments to support its passage.

“The international community must remember its obligation to end atrocity crimes like genocide and crimes against humanity,” said Dolkun Isa, President of the World Uyghur Congress. “Justice must be served.”

“Governments must seize this opportunity to finally respond to the abuses,” said Omer Kanat, Executive Director of the Uyghur Human Rights Project. “The UN now has a chance to give hope to a suffering people.”

A vote on the resolution will take place next week in Geneva. Its passage would be a notable step by the UN body to act on a ground-breaking report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. The High Commissioner found that abuses faced by Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples “may constitute international crimes, in particular crimes against humanity.”

We continue to urge action on necessary steps to follow up on the report’s findings, calling on:

  • The UN Human Rights Council to take up the issue in a Special Session or Urgent Debate with the aim of establishing a Commission of Inquiry (COI) to independently examine the treatment of Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples;

  • The UN Special Procedures to consider evidence presented in the report and respond with recommendations for the UN and the international community;

  • The UN Office on Genocide Prevention to immediately conduct an assessment of the risks of atrocities—including genocide and crimes against humanity—targeting Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples, and to alert relevant actors and advocate for a proportionate response;

  • The ILO to take note of the report, include additional evidence of forced labour in its Committee of Experts annual report, and for delegates at the International Labour Conference to lodge a complaint against China for failure to uphold its obligations;

  • UNESCO to urgently investigate cases of destruction or marginalisation of natural and cultural heritage, including UNESCO-listed heritage (Muqam, Karez well system, Manas, Meshrep, and the Tianshan mountain range);

  • The global business community to immediately cut all ties with entities assisting the government to carry out the atrocities, especially the programs of high-tech surveillance and state-imposed forced labour; and

  • Governments and international organizations to take urgent steps to protect Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples at imminent risk of refoulement, in line with an urgent joint statement from 22 refugee and human rights groups and 50 Uyghur organizations.

We commend and warmly welcome the statement by 45 independent UN experts, who expressed their support for its findings and urged the Human Rights Council to hold a special session in response; to consider the creation of an expert—or panel of experts—to monitor and report on the human rights situation in China more broadly; for the General Assembly or Secretary-General to consider the creation of a special envoy; and for UN Member States and UN agencies and business enterprises to “demand that China fulfils its human rights obligations.”

  1. Alberta Uyghur Association

  2. Australian East Turkestan Association

  3. Australian Uyghur Association

  4. Australian Uyghur Tangritagh Women’s Association

  5. Austria Uyghur Association

  6. Belgium Uyghur Association

  7. Blue Crescent Humanitarian Aid Association

  8. Campaign for Uyghurs

  9. Center for Uyghur Studies

  10. Dutch Uyghur Human Rights Foundation

  11. East Turkistan Association of Canada

  12. East Turkistan Education and Solidarity Association

  13. East Turkistan Entrepreneur Tradesmen and Industrialists Businessmen Association

  14. Eastern Turkistan Foundation

  15. East Turkistan Human Rights Watch

  16. East Turkistan Nuzugum Culture and Family Association

  17. East Turkestan Press and Media Association

  18. East Turkistan Research Institute

  19. East Turkistan Sports and Development Association

  20. East Turkistan Union in Europe

  21. East Turkestan Union of Muslim Scholars

  22. European East Turkistan Education Association

  23. Finnish Uyghur Culture Center

  24. Furkan Education and Cooperation Association

  25. Hira Education Association

  26. Hoca Ahmet Yesevi Science and lore Foundation

  27. Institute of China Studies

  28. Isa Yusup Alptekin Foundation

  29. Japan Uyghur Association

  30. Justice 4 Uyghurs

  31. Knowledge and Service Solidarity and Cooperation Association

  32. Norwegian Uyghur Committee

  33. Satuq Bugrakhan Foundation of Science and Civilization

  34. Society Union of Uyghur National Association

  35. Stop Uyghur Genocide Australia

  36. Stop Uyghur Genocide UK

  37. Sweden Uyghur Union

  38. Swiss Uyghur Association

  39. Taklamakan Uyghur Publish House

  40. Uighur Society “Ittipak” of the Kyrgyz Republic

  41. UK Uyghur Community

  42. Uyghur Academy

  43. Uyghur Academy Australia

  44. Uyghur Academy Canada

  45. Uyghur Academy Europe

  46. Uyghur Academy Foundation

  47. Uyghur Academy Japan

  48. Uyghur Academy USA

  49. Uyghur American Association

  50. Uyghur Center for Human Rights and Democracy

  51. Uyghur Cultural and Educational Foundation

  52. Uyghur Cultural and Education Union in Germany

  53. Uyghur Hjelp

  54. Uyghur Human Rights Project

  55. Uyghur PEN Center

  56. Uyghur Projects Foundation

  57. Uyghur Refugee Relief Fund

  58. Uyghur Research Institute

  59. Uyghur Rights Advocacy Project

  60. Uyghur Science and Civilization Research Foundation

  61. Uyghur Science and Education Foundation

  62. Uyghur Transitional Justice Database

  63. Uyghur Youth Union in Kazakhstan

  64. Victoria Uyghur Association

  65. World Uyghur Congress

  66. World Uyghur Congress Foundation


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