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China, anti terrorism campaign: a quiet repression

Asia @en di

Xinjiang is the scene of a bloody repression of Beijing the minority Uighurs, a Muslim, has always defended the autonomy of its territory. Bejing decided to tighten anti terror campaign because of the Islamic terrorism and the economic reasons

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Jihadism does not concern only Arabic States and Western. September 11 attack, attempts in European capital cities, Al Qaeda attention-seeking behaviour in the beginning of 21st century, Islamic State propaganda. All these elements are misleading because not only United States and Europe must fight fondamentalism.

Sure enough anti-terrorism legislation became a prime interest for China. It’s especially adopted in Xinjiang, which borders on Mongolia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, and where lives Uighurs, Sunnis of Turkish origin.

This area is very important from economic persepctive. Here new Silk Road will live again and will connect China to Europe by land and sea. Moreover, Xinjiang containes oil and gas resources. But all these grown factors are contrasting with jihadist threat. Furthermore, nationalist reason has been always present here because of Uighurs fights from 1911 to 1949 and Eastern Turkestan foundation for short times. So patriotic and religious sentiments are at the bottom of fights against government.

Bejing has to want to battle it. The “ethnic submergence” in Xinjiang began after September 11 attack and consists in Han, the great majority of Chineses, relocation in this territory. This political program is running as Uighurs has decreased from 80% to 45% of population.

This battle got worse since April 2014, when anti terrorism campaign became more aggressive. First of all because at least 200 Chineses went to Syria to enlist in Islamic State from 2012 to this year. Moreover, Uighurs attacks in Xinjiang was over 800 since 2013. So Bejing extended anti terrorism campaign to the end of 2015 and increased its brutality against population. Sure enough, over 2000 people was killed in July 2014. A forgotten slaughter, but on the same degree of Tien An Men Square or Tibet.

Furthermore, over 27000 suspected terrorists captured in 2014. 55 estimated jihadists are taken to trial up against 7000 people. While criminal acts regarding Uighurs increased of 45%. Moreover government forbade the burqa, the full beard and the Ramadan for public empolyees.This can stop to imperious economic development is therefore basic in Bejing action. Which is battling the problem in a different way than the West. Indeed, the government’s attitude is different towards the Hui, the other ethnic group of Islamic faith in China. This because the Hui have not hardly ever take position against Popular Republic, unlike the Uighur.

Xinjiang matter is becoming more and more considerable. This matter could propose again in Africa, where China owns several economical profits, and could turn in global problem. So Bejing could be an important geopolitical part of Internation Community against Islamic Fundamentalist.

Giacomo Pratali

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Giacomo Pratali
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