US-led call for debate on Xinjiang report rejected in UN
A motion to debate about a report on human rights abuses and possible crimes against humanity in China's Xinjiang province was rejected in the United Nations human rights council meeting on Thursday.
While 17 members of the council voted in favor of a debate on the report, prepared by the UN human rights commissioner, 11 countries abstained, and 19 countries voted against it.
The rejection of the United States-led call has been interpreted by the Western media as a confirmation that many states refuse to take side in the ideological power struggle between China and the West, and an indication of successful lobbying by Pekin.
While Somalia was the only member state of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to vote “yes,” several Muslim-majority countries including Indonesia, Pakistan, Qatar and Uzbekistan voted "no."
Argentina, Brazil, India, Malaysia, Mexico and Ukraine were among countries that abstained.
The UN report suggests the discriminatory detention of Muslim groups in Xinjiang province might constitute crimes against humanity and calls on China to “take prompt steps” to release all of those detainees in so-called training centers, prisons, or detention facilities.
The outgoing human rights commissioner Michelle Bachelet, who wrote the report, condemned Beijing for “serious human rights violations” and possible “crimes against humanity” as she departed.