A group of Australian experts warned about the hundreds of construction sites, similar to detention centers, that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) built and continues to increase in the region of Xinjiang, where it is accused of violating the rights of Muslim minorities.
The Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) analyzed satellite images and CCP tenders and it located more than 380 facilities suspected of being internment camps built or expanded since 2017, according to ABC News on Sept. 24.
At least 60 of these camps have been expanded and another 14 are still under construction, despite the fact that CCP leaders reported that all the detainees “graduated” by the end of last year.
“There are hundreds of large-scale facilities here, which seem to be dedicated to accommodating people separated from society,” said ASPI’s Center for International Cyber Policy researcher Nathan Ruser, according to ABC News.
“Available evidence suggests that many extrajudicial detainees in Xinjiang’s vast ‘re-education’ network are being formally charged and locked up in higher security facilities, including newly built or expanded prisons, or sent to walled factory precincts for forced labor,” Ruser added, according to Fox News.
Since Xinjiang began its detention campaign in 2017, it may have imprisoned more than 1 million Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the detention camps.
After denying the existence of the camps, the CCP admitted their existence by calling them “education and vocational training centers” dedicated to reforming terrorists.
The testimonies of the victims show that they were subjected to brutal human rights violations, political indoctrination, beatings, and sometimes psychological and physical torture.
Members of the Uighur ethnic minority that professes the Muslim religion have been locked up in camps as part of a campaign by the CCP to eliminate their culture, given the decadeslong, sometimes violent, defense against the CCP’s domination.
As part of the persecution against their ethnicity, the CCP convicts Uighurs in secret and extrajudicial trials and locks them up in high security prisons for “crimes” such as exchanging information with foreigners, having too many children and studying Islam.
In the case of women or the elderly, considered to be at low “risk,” they are subjected to a form of house arrest or forced labor in factories.
The Xinjiang region is home to some 11 million Uighurs, and this population is one of the many that suffer persecution as a state policy, for retaining their culture.
In addition, Christians from the interior of the country and practitioners of the spiritual discipline Falun Gong are persecuted by the CCP, who since 1999 have suffered forced organ removal, as well as multiple types of torture and imprisonment.
The Trump administration has issued sanctions against companies that take advantage of the slave labor to which CCP political prisoners are forced.
The House on Sept. 22 passed a law restricting imports of products made with forced labor from China amid concerns about reports of mistreatment of Muslim Uighurs in the Xinjiang region.