Washington, D.C. According to an expert, the Chinese communist regime is committing genocide against Uyghurs in China’s Xinjiang region, although Muslim countries remain largely silent because they have become China’s colonies.
Beijing has set its sights on Islamic countries in the Middle East and Central Asia as critical to its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI, also known as One Belt, One Road), which aims to resurrect the ancient “Silk Road.”
Since 2013, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has made the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) a cornerstone of its strategy to increase its geopolitical influence. The programme invests billions of dollars in the construction of highways, bridges, ports, power plants, and telecommunications networks worldwide.
According to Abdulhakim Idris, an Islamic scholar and inspector general of the World Uyghur Congress, despite China’s BRI’s pledge to bring economic prosperity to poor countries, it has so far implemented new colonialism.
Idris said at a virtual panel on April 19 organised by the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation and Campaign for Uyghurs that Beijing is using its economic power to gain a diplomatic advantage and its political leverage for security and military purposes.
“The CCP has seized control of the vast majority of Islamic countries,” he warned.
He compared the Chinese regime to a “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” accusing it of concealing “its crimes with propaganda.”
Idris is the author of a new novel, “Menace: China’s Colonization of the Islamic World & Uyghur Genocide,” which reveals the Chinese regime’s control over Islamic nations and the Western world.
He said that despite traditionally strong ties with Uyghur Muslims, most Islamic countries remain silent on China’s genocide. These countries are following the instructions of the Chinese regime and supporting Beijing’s stance on Xinjiang and Hong Kong issues in the United Nations Human Rights Council, he said.
The Trump administration deemed the CCP’s treatment of Muslim minorities in Xinjiang to be “genocide” in January. More than one million Uyghurs were imprisoned in internment camps by the communist government, who subjected them to forced sterilisation, forced abortion, torture, forced labour, and the abduction of children from their families.
Human rights experts spoke out at the panel, condemning Beijing’s attempts to spread misinformation about Uyghurs and manipulate Islamic countries.
“China has wrongly depicted Uyghur Muslims as a threat to send them to concentration camps and deny them basic rights that millions of people have,” said Nihad Awad, co-founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the United States’ largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy group.
The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) includes 139 nations, including China. According to the Council on Foreign Relations, they account for 40% of the global economy and 63% of the world’s population (CFR).
The BRI has led to a significant increase in external debt in many of these nations, establishing China as a major global lender. Beijing’s opaque lending policies have come under fire in recent years, as they have exacerbated developing countries’ debt vulnerabilities.
The massive construction projects of the BRI are primarily funded by Chinese local governments and state-controlled institutions. The initiative has been criticised for being a “debt trap,” increasing the possibility of economic instability in borrower countries.
According to Idris, China is the only winner in this economic welfare initiative because Chinese companies and workers are completing the lion’s share of infrastructure projects in developing countries.
“Look at Pakistan to see what happened to those who accepted this colonial order,” Idris said. “Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has acknowledged that the future of his country’s economy is now dependent on China.”
The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a series of $62 billion infrastructure projects in Pakistan, triggered a balance of payments crisis in the region, necessitating an IMF bailout programme.
Beijing, according to Idris, is also exporting its authoritarian regime, mostly to Islamic governments in Central Asia and the Middle East.
At the virtual panel, Andrew Bremberg, president and CEO of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, stated that the Chinese regime may be exporting its abusive labour practises to BRI countries.
“China’s labor practices in many of these BRI countries do not comply with basic labor law and labor protections,” he said.
According to a recent study sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations, the United States’ ineffective response to China’s BRI has aided China’s rise in emerging markets.
“The United States’ economic and political predicament is the product of both American indifference and Chinese assertiveness.” The United States’ withdrawal [from the competition] contributed to the void that China filled with BRI, “according to the paper.