Citizen Power for China/Initiatives for China Statementon the 4th Anniversary of the Ethnic Unrest in Urumqi
On the eve of the fourth anniversary of the ethnic unrest that occurred in Urumqi on July 5, 2009, Citizen Power for China, also known as the Initiatives for China, expresses solidarity with our Uyghur brothers and sisters in their struggle against repression and cultural genocide by the Chinese government.
We commemorate the anniversary of this tragic event and mourn all the innocent lives lost during and since the unrest which was the worst and most violent conflict between the Han Chinese and Uyghurs. The incident was directly triggered by Chinese government inaction over the death of a Uyghur factory worker in Shaoguan, Guangdong, and fueled by subsequent police violence against Uyghur demonstrators, resulting in hundreds dead and thousands injured. An unknown number were detained, tortured, prosecuted, and severely sentenced, including death sentences for several dozen protesters and long prison terms for many.
The Chinese Communist regime’s ruthless crackdown has not only failed to maintain stability and peace in the region, but instead has created even deeper hatred. This is evidenced in the ongoing tension, including the deadly incidents this week in Shanshan County, and Hetian District, which have resulted in the death of dozens, and is an example of how the long-running tensions have intensified between the oppressed and the oppressor.
Citizen Power for China is deeply concerned about the Chinese regime’s war-like stance against the Uyghur people, dispatching thousands of police and special forces armed to the teeth, intending to ruthlessly suppress the Uyghur people as “terrorists.”
The entire Chinese propaganda machine is running at full speed to label the protesters as terrorists, condemning the “enemy forces” behind the unrest, and attacking America’s “double-standard of anti-terrorism,” and accusing the US of acting an accomplice of the “terrorists.” The government-run media also encourages officials in Xinjiang to preemptively attack the Uyghurs and advocates for the permanent presence of the Chinese military in the region. Such aggressive rhetoric and actions are not only totally irresponsible, but deliberately distorts right and wrong. Citizen Power for China worries that the Chinese regime’s policy will further spread bloodshed across the region.
Citizen Power for China opposes any violence against innocent people and does not pursue violent means for any its political ends. We have noted that the Uyghur people now target directly the oppressing machine of the dictatorship to protect their own people, and do not randomly use violence against citizens, including the Han Chinese. It is ironic that the Chinese Communist Party, once a true believer in armed struggle that hails one of its past heroes using two chopping knives to begin his revolutionary career, now condemns the Uyghur people’s resistance as terrorist activity and has even launched a campaign to confiscate all knives in the Uyghur region while they can use tanks and machine guns to kill innocent people. Facts show the Chinese Communist Party is the real terrorist in the history: it has exterminated tens of millions Chinese and other ethnic people through its policy and planned eliminations.
Citizen Power for China strongly believes that the root cause of the Uyghur’s unrest is China’s repressive policy, long-time racial discrimination, cultural genocide, and disrespect for the Uyghur people’s basic human rights, including their religious freedom. Only when these issues are addressed can the ethnic conflicts be resolved.
Citizen Power for China urges the Chinese leadership to put the well-being of all peoples first, to launch a peace initiative instead of a military crackdown against the Uyghur people, and to start serious political and constitutional reforms throughout China, including reforms of its ethnicity policy and practices, to address the legitimate grievances of the Uyghur people, to share power and wealth derived from the Uyghur land, and create a truly harmonious environment for all.