This Tuesday, June 15th, the Belgian parliament declared the atrocities committed by the Chinese government on Uyghurs and other ethnic Turkic peoples in East Turkestan (also known as the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region) as constituting “a serious risk for genocide and crime against humanity.”
The original motion passed almost unanimously with the only exception being Belgium’s Communist Party. By passing this motion the Belgian government marks the seventh country in the world declaring China’s genocidal campaign—closely following the Parliament of the Czech Republic’s unanimous vote declaring the genocide that took place on the 10th of June. Other countries recognizing the Uyghur genocide include the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, the Netherlands, and Lithuania.
According to the genocide resolution, the Belgian government will abolish the bilateral extradition treaty they have with the Chinese government. Additionally, the Belgian government cannot ratify the frozen EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment. Similarly, the motion passed by the Czech parliament calls on the Czech government to boycott the Winter 2022 Olympics held in Beijing on the basis of China’s genocide and crimes against humanity committed on the Uyghurs.
In response to these two declarations, Save Uighur’s team lead Serwi Huseyin stated, “The Save Uighur team and the Uyghur diaspora welcome the Belgian and Czech parliaments’ motions in recognizing China’s atrocities as genocide. With this resolution, we call on countries around the world to pass similar motions recognizing China’s ongoing massive ethnic cleansing as genocide, and take action accordingly. The world must know that Uyghurs are on the threshold of becoming extinct as a result of China’s ethnic eradication and assimilation campaigns in East Turkestan. Everyday, Uyghurs are subjected to extermination camps, arbitrary long term imprisonment, forced sterilization, organ harvesting, forced labor, and many more of China’s genocidal tools. These crimes should be punished and the world needs to take action!”