With technology and an iron fist, China has turned the Western region into a surveillance state like no other.

Two in three Americans think poorly of China, survey says
Americans’ views on China have fallen to their lowest level since an annual poll started asking the question in 2005, according to survey results released Tuesday. The poll last month by the Washington think tank Pew Research Center found 66% of respondents held an unfavorable view of China, up from 47% in 2017 when President Donald Trump took office. And a large majority of the 1,000 Americans polled said they lacked confidence in President Xi Jinping to do the right thing when it came to global affairs, a steep increase since last year. The results come as the relationship between the two economic giants has deteriorated rapidly during the coronavirus outbreak. The two countries are engage
Uygurs abroad in mental health crisis over plight of relatives in Xinjiang
Several years ago, Ilshat Hassan contemplated buying a gun. He was receiving threats over the phone and online from people who took issue with his advocacy for the Uygur people, he says, and feared for the safety of his family. But his wife objected, and Hassan eventually abandoned the idea. They were both scared of the possibility that the state of his mental health could one day cause him to turn the firearm on himself. “Hurting myself,” says Hassan, an IT professional living in Virginia. “That was my concern.” Struggling with anxiety and depression, the 58-year-old is just one of many members of the Uygur diaspora who say their mental health is in crisis, triggered or exacerbated by the s
Fake resumes expose hiring biases against Muslims in China
A Muslim job seeker in China is less than half as likely to get a response from employers than their Han Chinese counterparts, according to a newly published study.  In an experiment carried out in 2017, researchers sent out more than 4,000 fictitious resumes from candidates identifying themselves by ethnicity – either Han, Hui or Uygur – to companies in major cities across China. The findings were published in December 2019. The Uygur and Hui, the two biggest Muslim-majority groups in the country, received far fewer replies than the ethnic Han job-seekers, according to the study, titled “Anti-muslim bias in the Chinese labor market.”  A Hui applicant is about half as likely to get a callbac
No deal and no name as German soccer counts the cost of China backlash
A German soccer club and one of the country’s star players are feeling the heat from China.  News emerged over the weekend that Bundesliga side Cologne lost a deal with a Chinese gambling sponsor. Meanwhile, state-controlled Chinese media are still blacklisting Arsenal star and former German international player Mesut Özil. According to Cologne newspaper Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger, the loss for the postponed deal was about $1.66 million.  The club did not offer comment but confirmed that the sponsors from China had withdrawn the potential deal, reported Deutsche Welle online. Cologne made headlines last month when they chose to postpone a joint academy with the Chinese soccer club Liaoning.  The
‘There are values higher than money’: German soccer club scraps China deal
German soccer club FC Cologne has pulled out of a $2 million deal to run a football academy in northeast China, as a member of the club council said they should not support “such a totalitarian and brutal dictatorship.” Cologne’s president, Werner Wolf, told the local paper Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger on Wednesday that the Bundesliga club had decided not to proceed with the project. Stefan Müller-Römer, a member of the club council, told the paper: “I understand that the Federal Republic of Germany cannot get past the economic power of China completely and so there is an exchange. But we don’t need China in sports.” He also said that human rights in China were being massively disregarded and a su
Soccer star sparks controversy with Xinjiang social media posts
Arsenal midfielder Mesut Özil has become the latest international celebrity caught in a political storm in China after he strongly criticized Beijing’s policies in Xinjiang. The German soccer player hit out at the Muslim world’s silence over allegations of widespread human rights abuses in the far western region, where a million mainly Uygur Muslims have reportedly been detained in re-education camps. The comments prompted a backlash from Chinese newspapers and social media users, some of whom accused him of “hurting the feelings of the Chinese people.” China’s state broadcaster CCTV did not air Arsenal’s Sunday matchup against Manchester City. Özil, whose family originates from Turkey, pos
The year the Chinese propaganda machine failed spectacularly
If President Xi Jinping’s team carries out annual job appraisals, China’s overseas propaganda team will surely be found to have performed catastrophically.  Whether it is Hong Kong or Xinjiang, Huawei or the trade war with the United States, the Chinese regime has had a string of notable public relations failures this year. While the regime’s propaganda efforts have worked quite well on the domestic audience, mainly because of the Great Firewall, the overseas propaganda arm has suffered major defeats.  Despite deploying numerous resources via official and unofficial channels, the regime has not only failed to achieve its intended purpose of interacting well with the rest of the world but als
Meet Chen Quanguo, Beijing’s hatchet man in Xinjiang
For Chen Quanguo, it was just a normal day at the office in China’s Xinjiang region on December 3. His agenda included chairing a study session on patriotism, a regular event for Beijing’s point man in suppressing what China calls a separatist and terrorist insurgency in the region bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan. “[We] must continue an extensive campaign on legal education and anti-extremism, to guide cadres and people of all ethnic groups to further strengthen their patriotic awareness,” says the official statement of his comments at the meeting. Some hours later and more than 6,500 miles away, Chen’s activities were very much on the mind of more than 400 US lawmakers waking up in Washi
US lawmakers not swayed by China's Xinjiang policy defense
As Beijing steps up its defense of its mass internment measures targeting Muslims in China’s far west, one key target of its messaging campaign remains decidedly unconvinced: the US Congress. On Monday, representatives of the regional government in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region said that all “trainees” in what China calls vocational training centers have “graduated” and found stable employment. Foreign governments and international human rights watchdogs remain skeptical of China’s efforts to ward off accusations of a campaign to forcibly bring ethnic minority groups in the region into line. And Uygurs living overseas point to silence from their relatives in Xinjiang as proof they a
China says it will move to “normalize” internment camps in Xinjiang
China will move to “normalize” mass internment facilities in Xinjiang and open what Beijing calls education facilities in the region in the future, amid rising US-China clashes over the treatment of ethnic minorities in the western region. In a press conference on Monday, Shohrat Zakir, chairman of the Xinjiang government, took aim at foreign media and western governments, blaming them for distorting the image of China’s controversial counter-terrorism efforts in the predominately Muslim region, in particular its mass detention of Uygurs accused of harboring extremist ideas by the authorities. “The US is getting restless and has launched a smear campaign against Xinjiang,” he said. “But no f