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Sunday, July 14th, 2024

Uighur organization accuses Chinese authorities of banning Eid celebrations in Xinjiang

In contrast to global Muslim celebrations on the occasion of Eid al-Adha, the Centre for Uyghur Studies has accused the Chinese government of intensifying its crackdown on Islamic practices in Xinjiang, historically known as East Turkistan.

Traditionally celebrated as a festival of sacrifice, Eid al-Adha holds deep cultural and religious significance for Muslims around the world.

However, the Centre for Uyghur Studies highlighted that Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang are being denied the right to celebrate this important occasion due to severe restrictions imposed by Chinese authorities since 2017.

“For centuries, Uighur Muslims have been joyfully celebrating Eid with the global Muslim community,” the centre said in a public announcement on X.

It further said, “Nevertheless, in recent years, they have faced increasing repression under Chinese occupation, particularly since 2017.”

Under the current regime, Chinese policies have reportedly criminalised Islamic practices and banned religious festivals such as Eid al-Adha.

The Centre for Uyghur Studies stressed that Uyghur Muslims have diligently preserved their Islamic heritage despite decades of Chinese rule, but now face “genocide” by Chinese authorities.

The allegation refers to widespread reports of mass internment, forced labor and forced assimilation practices targeting Uighurs and other predominantly Muslim populations in the region.

“Eid al-Adha traditionally symbolizes the values ​​of sacrifice, compassion and devotion,” the centre’s statement added. “For Uighur Muslims, it is a reminder of their membership in the global Muslim community, even despite the challenges they currently face.”

The Chinese government has consistently denied allegations of human rights abuses in Xinjiang and says its policies are a necessary measure against separatism and terrorism.

However, international scrutiny and condemnation has increased, and several countries and human rights organizations have called for an independent investigation into the situation.

As Muslims around the world celebrate Eid al-Adha, the plight of Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang is a poignant reminder of the ongoing cultural and religious tensions in China’s western regions.

The Center for Uyghur Studies and other advocacy groups continue to advocate for global awareness and action to address systematic oppression and cultural erasure.

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