By: Jianli Yang & Lianchao Han

September 29, 2020 

Lately, there have been news reports regarding protests in Inner Mongolia, an autonomous region in the north of China, over the introduction of a “bilingual” education system in elementary and middle schools of the region. Under this system, from the new academic year that started on Sept. 1, 2020, Chinese would be the medium of instruction for some specific subjects. It is feared that eventually Mongolian-medium will be completely replaced with Chinese-medium teaching across all school subjects, and the Mongolian language will be wiped out.

Ethnic Mongols consider this move by the Chinese Communist Party-led central government as the final nail in the coffin toward burying their ethnic identity.

Since China took over the regions of southern Mongolia after World War II and gave it the Sino-centric name – “Inner Mongolia,” it has been steadily and institutionally eroding Mongolian culture and forcing Mongolians to adopt Chinese culture. Due to decades of Han migration and intermarriage into Inner Mongolia, ethnic Mongolians have become a minority in their own land, accounting for only about 17% of Inner Mongolia’s population of 24 million. [continue reading]

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