Documents and photos leaked in late May have provided new shocking evidence of the atrocities being conducted by Chinese authorities against ethnic Uyghurs in the Xinjiang province. Many of the documents are official records of the Chinese Ministry of Interior and depict persons imprisoned in Shufu County internment camps in the province.
The Uyghur gulag system maintained in Xinjiang included forced sterilizations and abortions, separation of married couples and parents from children, and daily indoctrination of captive workers in Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ideology.
A leaked document confirms that the camps are in fact operated as prisons, with guards in watchtowers given “shoot to kill” orders. Detainees are also ordered to be transported between work camps in ankle shackles, handcuffs, and hoods.
The documents include speeches by upper-level CCP officials regarding the “Uyghur Question” and policy papers regarding the use of detainees for forced labor. One of the speeches was delivered by Chen Quanguo, the officer most responsible for the creation of the slave labor infrastructure in Xinjiang.
Chen was also the CCP leader in Chinese-suppressed Tibet from 2011 to 2016. He was replaced in Xinjiang by a less brutal governor in an apparent effort to present a more acceptable international image of the management of the province.
Another leaked report written by Minister of Public Security Zhao Kezhi shows the direct involvement of President Xi Jinping in the campaign to eliminate “separatism, terrorism, and religious extremism” in the Uyghur ethnic minorities.
The CCP propaganda presented on the Chinese Global Television Network depicts a pluralistic society in Xinjiang that permits and even celebrates ethnic traditions. Diplomats are given guided tours showing a sanitized version of daily life in the province. The leaked documents indicate that in reality any resident wearing a beard or veil, attending religious services, or possessing verses from the Koran is typically arrested and confined in an internment camp.
The new leaks, previously reported documents and films, intelligence gathered by satellite, and testimony from escaped camp inmates show a picture of a living hell for ethnic minorities in Xinjiang. The province appears to be operated now as one huge prison complex.
Western nations and international democracies should publicize the leaks as a stark warning of the true nature of life under the CCP as opposed to the image the party portrays to the world.