43 countries including Turkey call on China to respect Uyghur rights

Forty-three countries including Turkey on Thursday at the United Nations urged China to “ensure full respect for the rule of law” with regard to the Muslim Uyghur community in Xinjiang, where human rights violations remain “particularly” worrying.

“We call on China to allow immediate, meaningful and unfettered access to Xinjiang for independent observers, including the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights and her office,” the countries said in a joint statement, read at the U.N. by France.

“We are particularly concerned about the situation in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region,” the statement said, citing “credible” reports that “indicate the existence of a large network of ‘political reeducation’ camps where over a million people have been arbitrarily detained.”

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China’s ambassador to the United Nations, Zhang Jun denounced what he termed the “lies” and “a plot to hurt China.” He quickly stepped in to reject “unfounded accusations.”