At a time when there are no signs of thaw between India and China, it is a given that there will be escalation as India won’t let the death of its soldiers go in vain nor will it allow Chinese soldiers to set up base in the the Galwan Valley. US President Donald Trump who has so far desisted from tweeting on the issue as the world watched on keenly, has signed a bill which seeks to sanction China for atrocities on Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, the timing of which cannot be ignored.
The so-called leaders of the Muslim world, including Pakistan PM Imran Khan and Turkey President Erdogan, have turned a blind eye to the Chinese Communist Party’s unspeakable atrocities against the Uyghur Muslims. Trump is determined to corner China and has signed ‘The Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act, 2020’ which paves the way to impose sanctions on the CCP officials who are directly involved in the atrocities committed on the Uyghur Muslims.
Commenting on the bill, Republican Senator Marco Rubio, said, “As the Chinese government and Communist Party of China (CPC) continue its mass internment of at least a million Uyghurs and other Muslim ethnic minorities, the US will hold the CPC and its enablers accountable for their heinous crimes.”
Senator Jim Risch, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee added, “The internment of at least a million Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities is reprehensible and inexcusable, and the Chinese Communist Party and government must be held to account. This legislation is the product of a true bipartisan, bicameral effort and I look forward to its full implementation soon.”
For the uninitiated, China’s brutal crackdown on the Uyghur Muslims is gut-wrenching. In September last year, Lawyer Hamid Sabi, speaking at the UNHRC headquarters in Geneva claimed that the Chinese government is harvesting and selling organs from persecuted ethnic and religious minorities including the Uyghur Muslims, who are being persecuted at an accelerated pace.
China has a very low number of voluntary organ donors, at an average of just more than 100 per year. However, the number of organ transplants run into thousands. This number shot up in a big way only after 2004. In fact, a report says that in China, over 60,000 to 100,000 transplants have been taking place annually, to the point that surgeons have ‘lost count’.
Moreover, since 2018, Uyghur families in Xinjiang have to mandatorily invite government officials into their homes, provide them information about their lives and political views, and comply with political indoctrination.
The Chinese administration is trying to ethnically cleanse Xinjiang by practising the “Pair Up and Become Family” programme which involves the country’s Han ethnic majority officers – to stay in Uyghur households every two months as a part of the programme. The Chinese government describes the spies as ‘relatives’ of the monitored families and have to work, eat, and often share a bed with their ‘hosts’ as the Uyghurs are compulsorily made to stay with their ‘paired relatives’ day and night.
Expectedly, the Chinese Communist Party has lashed out at the USA as the Chinese Foreign Ministry in a statement said, “We again urge the U.S. side to immediately correct its mistakes and stop using this Xinjiang-related law to harm China’s interests and interfere in China’s internal affairs.” It further added, “Otherwise, China will resolutely take countermeasures, and all the consequences arising therefrom must be fully borne by the United States.”
Meanwhile, Trump has also threatened to cut off ties with China as Trump took to Twitter to say, “It was not Ambassador Lighthizer’s fault (yesterday in Committee) in that perhaps I didn’t make myself clear, but the U.S. certainly does maintain a policy option, under various conditions, of a complete decoupling from China. Thank you!”
It was not Ambassador Lighthizer’s fault (yesterday in Committee) in that perhaps I didn’t make myself clear, but the U.S. certainly does maintain a policy option, under various conditions, of a complete decoupling from China. Thank you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 18, 2020
The timing of Trump’s move to sanction CCP officials and also threaten to decouple from China is significant as India and China are involved in the bloodiest clash in decades.
On the other hand, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has expressed his deepest condolences to Indians for the loss of 20 bravehearts. He tweeted, “We extend our deepest condolences to the people of India for the lives lost as a result of the recent confrontation with China. We will remember the soldiers’ families, loved ones, and communities as they grieve.”
We extend our deepest condolences to the people of India for the lives lost as a result of the recent confrontation with China. We will remember the soldiers' families, loved ones, and communities as they grieve.
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) June 19, 2020
Earlier, top US Diplomat, Alice Wells also said that the US will always stand with India against any Chinese aggression. Wells who was the former Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary (PDAS) took to Twitter to say that, “External rebalancing is critical. At the end of the day, it will be the US that stands with India in pushing back against constant Chinese probing of Indian sovereignty. #USindia dosti #india,”
External rebalancing is critical. At the end of the day, it will be the US that stands with India in pushing back against constant Chinese probing of Indian sovereignty. #USindia dosti #india https://t.co/FJki4dKW33
— Alice G Wells (@AliceGWells) June 13, 2020
Trump’s move and his latest comment is a clear signal to China, that the US will not tolerate China’s misadventures and it strongly stands with India amid the ongoing tensions.