Lawyers File ICC Complaint Against China For Seizing Uyghurs Who Fled Abroad

WASHINGTON, June 10, 2021 – Lawyers acting on behalf of The East Turkistan Government in Exile, the East Turkistan National Awakening Movement, and Uyghur victims of Chinese oppression, have submitted a new dossier of evidence to the International Criminal Court (ICC) Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) establishing that there is jurisdiction to open an investigation into the Genocide and Crimes against Humanity committed against Uyghur and other Turkic peoples by Chinese authorities

The evidence shows that Uyghurs have been targeted, rounded up, deported and disappeared from Tajikistan back into occupied East Turkistan (Xinjiang) by Chinese operatives. It demonstrates that Chinese authorities have directly intervened in Tajikistan.

The ICC, therefore, has jurisdiction over these actions which start in Tajikistan and continue into China Occupied East Turkistan. The OTP is requested to open an ICC investigation without delay.

The evidence gathered to date shows that over the past 10-15 years the number of Uyghurs living in Tajikistan has been reduced from an estimated 3000 to approximately 100. This reduction in the numbers of Uyghurs in Tajikistan largely occurred from 2016 to 2018.

That is an 85- 90% reduction of the Uyghur population in Tajikistan over this period of time. The evidence also shows that the China-Tajik border is heavily controlled by Chinese authorities. 

There is a newly constructed Chinese border fence made up of three layers of barbed wire in the area of the Kulma pass, which is the main entry point into – and out of – China Occupied East Turkistan. It has cameras, Chinese flags, and patrols along it. This fence is well within Tajik territory.

There is also evidence of a newly-built Chinese military base around the Rangkul area of Tajikistan in addition to the already existing base in Badakhshan.

“Based on this new dossier of evidence presented to the ICC Prosecutor, showing the actions of Chinese authorities directly in Tajikistan – an ICC State Party – it is clear that the ICC does have jurisdiction to open an investigation. The evidence shows a highly organized and systematic plan by the Chinese authorities to round up Uyghurs living in an ICC State Party and deport them back into China where they are never heard from again,” Rodney Dixon QC said after the new evidence was submitted.

“Although it is very depressing to see this new evidence, especially the terrifying extent to which Chinese authorities are acting even outside East Turkistan, I feel a sense of hope that the ICC will open an investigation,” Prime Minister Salih Hudayar of the East Turkistan Government in Exile said.“This will be the first step for ending the atrocities East Turkistan’s people have gone through including many of my own family members. Much more needs to be done to end the genocide of Uyghurs and we have great hope that the ICC will agree that they do have jurisdiction and the ability to investigate and prosecute these crimes. It is now more critical than ever, given that numerous governments and parliaments have already recognized this ongoing genocide.” 

Images: supplied

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