In the leaked 403 pages, it is revealed that top officials including Chinese President Xi Jinping created detention camps aimed to target Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region in an effort to control Islamic extremism. These are the most significant leaks from the Chinese Communist Party in decades.
An anonymous member of the Chinese political establishment bought these papers to light in the hope that government officials and President Xi Jinping would face accountability for the program.
According to the documents, these secret detention camps were made with the ‘benevolent’ purpose of attempting to curb Islamic extremism by training them to find better jobs. In the papers however, it is clear that this is a ruthless program of mass detention as speeches by President Xi show him telling officials to use the ‘organs of dictatorship’ and show ‘absolutely no mercy’.
The papers further describe how parents were taken away from children, how crops would not be planted or harvested and how students wondered who would be paying their school tuition. Despite this, officials were directed to tell children that they should be grateful for the Communist Party and that their behaviour would directly affect the length of time that their relatives would be in these camps.
The documents also outlined that any government officials who resisted or raised doubts about the program were to be immediately purged. One government official, who feared that the camps would lead to strained relations with ethnic minorities and a halt to the economic progress of the region, was immediately jailed after secretly releasing 7000 internment camp inmates.
This is the largest clampdown on ethnic minorities in China since Mao’s era.
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