“China is our best friend”, chuckles Imran Khan when asked about the persecution of Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang

No, Imran Khan doesn’t care about Muslims

Imran Khan, China, Pakistan

Imran Khan, the Pakistani prime minister who looks extremely concerned over the rights of Muslims of Kashmir, has turned his back over the persecution of Uighur Muslims in Chinese controlled territory of Xinjiang.

In an interview with Al Jazeera, the interviewer asked him whether he raised the issue of systematic persecution of the Muslim minority in China with Chinese President Xi Jinping, he replied: “No, I haven’t.”

It is to be noted here that, Imran Khan repeatedly asked the global Muslim community to raise their voice on Kashmir. He also said that Muslim nations like UAE and Saudi Arabia are turning their back to Muslims by not supporting Pakistani stand on Kashmir issue. But on the rights of Chinese Muslims, he shrugged off responsibility.

Khan said that he is only concerned about people of Pakistan. “And frankly, we have been facing so many of our internal problems right now, that I don’t really know much about this problem. And since we have been in power for one year, domestically, apart from the economy, and now with Kashmir, we have been inundated with problems. But I will say one thing for China, for us China has been the best friend,” said Imran Khan to Al Jazeera.

 

The Chinese authorities are running these internment camps in the name of “re-education camps”. According to an excerpt from an official Communist Party audio recording, which was transmitted last year to Uighurs was transcribed by Radio Free Asia. It stated, “Members of the public who have been chosen for reeducation have been infected by an ideological illness. They have been infected with religious extremism and violent terrorist ideology, and therefore they must seek treatment from a hospital as an inpatient. … The religious extremist ideology is a type of poisonous medicine, which confuses the mind of the people. … If we do not eradicate religious extremism at its roots, the violent terrorist incidents will grow and spread all over like an incurable malignant tumor.”

Therefore, China is virtually treating Islam as an ideological/ mental disorder. A senior Chinese official had spilled the beans while talking to a UN panel about the internment camps when he stated that there are, “no such things as re-education centres.” Even though the government documents refer to them as re-education centres, in reality, they are just vocational schools for criminals. This goes on to show how China is equating Islam with an ideological disorder bordering on criminality. The atrocities carried out against the Uighur community are flummoxing and unimaginable.

What is particularly more shocking is the stoic silence that Pakistan has maintained on this serious issue. A Pakistani daily, ‘Pakistan Today’, showered appreciation on Chinese Premier Xi-Jinping concerning his policies in the Xinjiang region.

The newspaper report reads“President Xi Jinping has tackled the threat with a two pronged strategy i.e. deal with the terrorists with an iron fist while eradicating the source of grievances by bringing prosperity, development and religious freedom to the Uighurs and other minorities.”

It is hard to believe that Pakistan is supporting such blatant violation of human rights of the Uighur Muslims in China. Pakistan is the same Islamic theocracy that used to be a self-acclaimed protector and vocal supporter of Muslim interests throughout the world.