Sep 21, 2019

China's anti-Muslim crackdowns extend beyond Uighurs

An ethnic Hui Muslim man standing in front of Laohuasi Mosque after Friday prayers in the Gansu province. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images

The Chinese government is expanding its crackdown on Muslims from beyond the Uighurs to include the Hui minority in Gansu province, reports the Washington Post.

Driving the news: The "tide of 'Sinicization'" is reaching the "Hui, a Chinese-speaking people with no recent record of separatism or extremism," the Post notes.

“The Xinjiang policy is already being implemented here. At least we’re moving in that direction. We’re born and raised Chinese. Our passports are Chinese. Our forefathers are Chinese. How do you want us to be more Chinese?”
— An unnamed imam told the Washington Post

State of play: The 10 million Hui Muslims haven't been held in concentration camps or faced intense surveillance, but the government is working on erasing anything deemed not Chinese, according to the Post.

  • Government cranes appeared over Hui mosques, with one mosque having its dome smashed in, per the Post. Officials claim it was an accident.
  • It's illegal to sell the Islamic holy book, the Quran.
  • All Arabic script in public places is now illegal.
  • Skullcaps and headscarves have been removed from public museums, and aren't allowed to be shown on public broadcasts.

Go deeper: Brutal dictatorships defend China's mass detentions of Uighur Muslims

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U.S. announces visa restrictions on Chinese officials for Uighur abuses

Photo: GREG BAKER/AFP/Getty Images

The State Department on Tuesday announced that it would impose visa restrictions on Chinese government officials who are believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, the mass detention and surveillance of Uighurs and other Muslim minority groups in Xinjiang province.

The big picture: China has detained an estimated 1 million to 2 million Uighur Muslims in the region of Xinjiang in "re-education camps" as part of a coordinated campaign of forced assimilation. The State Department's announcement follows a decision by the Commerce Department on Monday to blacklist 28 Chinese companies from doing business with the U.S. over the alleged abuses — moves that come just days before another round of highly anticipated trade talks in Washington.

Go deeperArrowOct 8, 2019

American speech puts spotlight on Chinese censorship

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

In less than 48 hours, three American companies in the business of mass entertainment have found themselves at the center of a political storm about China's aggressive censorship.

Why it matters: Media and entertainment have long acted as extensions of free speech with a mass reach, making them both vehicles for public expressions of controversial views and targets of government censorship.

Go deeperArrowOct 9, 2019

Chinese consumers shun American products

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

American brands are facing challenges in the Chinese market, as trade and geopolitical disputes wage on for the two countries, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: Western executives had long-established plans to dominate the Chinese market, but global consumer brands now have a smaller market share in China than at any other time since the last financial crisis, per WSJ.

Go deeperArrowOct 12, 2019