BY SIAN BAYLEY
FEB 18, 2022
William Collins has acquired Nury Turkel’s “searing and timely” exposé of China’s human rights abuses of the Uyghur people in Xinjian.
Shoaib Rokadiya, editorial director, bought UK and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, to No Escape: The True Story of China’s Persecution of the Uyghurs from Reka Rubin at HarperCollins US. World rights were acquired by Peter Joseph at Hanover Square Press from Howard Yoon at the Ross Yoon Agency. It will be published in hardback, e-book and audio on 10th May.
Turkel was born in a "re-education" camp in China at the height of the Cultural Revolution. He spent the first several months of his life in captivity with his mother, who was beaten and starved while pregnant with him, while his father served a penal sentence in an agricultural labour camp. Following this traumatic start, he was later granted asylum in the US where, as a lawyer, he has been an activist for the plight of his people.
He is chairman of the board for the Uyghur Human Rights Project, which he co-founded in 2003, and is currently serving as vice-chair for the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom.
William Collins said: “No Escape will be the first major book to tell the story of the Chinese government’s terrible oppression of the Uyghur people from the inside, detailing the labour camps, ethnic and religious cleansing, forced sterilisation of women and the surveillance tech that have made Xinjiang – in the words of one Uyghur who managed to flee – ‘a police surveillance state unlike any the world has ever known’.”
Rokadiya said: “Nury’s courageous advocacy over the past 20 years has drawn the world’s attention to China’s staggering human rights abuses in East Turkestan. In this searing expose, he gives voice to its countless victims and demonstrates that speaking out against injustice is a moral and ethical imperative for us all. I urge everybody to read this book.”
Turkel added: “With this book, I want the international community to see a glimpse of the brutal nature of the regime in Beijing that has been committing a genocide and crimes against humanity on the world’s watch. I hope it compels policy makers to prove that we will not let the words ‘never again’ ring shallow, whilst a vulnerable ethnic and religious group such as the Uyghurs are subjected to the most heinous state-sanctioned crimes in modern history.”