The Chinese foreign ministry on Tuesday dismissed Pope Francis’s criticism of China’s treatment of Muslim Uighurs as groundless.
In a brand-new book “Let Us Dream: The Path to A Better Future,” Pope Francis stated: “I think often of persecuted peoples: the Rohingya, the poor Uighurs, the Yazidi.”
It was the very first time he had actually called China’s Uighurs a maltreated individuals, something human rights activists have actually been advising him to do for several years.
Foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian declined his characterization of the Uighurs.
“The Chinese government has always protected the legal rights of ethnic minorities equally,” he informed a media rundown.
People of all ethnic backgrounds in Xinjiang take pleasure in complete defense of their subsistence rights, developmental rights and spiritual liberty, Zhao stated.
“The remarks by Pope Francis are groundless,” he stated.
While the pope has actually spoken up prior to about the Rohingya who have actually run away Myanmar and the killing of Yazidi by Islamic State in Iraq, it was the very first time he pointed out the Uighurs.
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Faith leaders, activist groups and federal governments have actually stated criminal activities versus humankind and genocide are happening versus Uighurs in China’s Xinjiang area, where more than 1 million individuals are kept in camps.
Beijing has actually turned down the accusations as an effort to reject China, stating the camps are trade education and training centres as part of counter-terrorism and deradicalisation steps.
Many analysts have stated the Vatican hesitated to speak up on the Uighurs previously due to the fact that it remained in the procedure of restoring an accord with Beijing on the visit of bishops. It was restored in September.