The U.S. State Department cited the Chinese government’s crackdown on ethnic Uyghurs in the Xinjiang region as one of six places in the world that are witnessing or are at risk of atrocities and crimes against humanity, as the U.S. explores new ways to try to prevent such violence.
“The crimes against humanity include imprisonment, torture, enforced sterilization and persecution,” according to the report. The finding was included in a report submitted to Congress Monday under the Elie Wiesel Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act.
The seven-page report cited a wave of actions the U.S. has taken to punish China for its actions in Xinjiang, including sanctions, visa restrictions and export controls. It also highlighted atrocities in Myanmar, Ethiopia, Iraq, Syria, and South Sudan.
“These places represent some of the toughest foreign policy challenges on our agenda,” Blinken said, citing public shaming in reports and sanctions as options the administration can deploy to help stop or prevent atrocities.
It was “absurd” for the U.S. to say it was a defender of human rights given its track record, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Zhao Lijian said Tuesday at a regular press briefing in Beijing.
Accusations that China was committing genocide in Xinjiang were “the lie of the century,” he added. “The credibility of the U.S. administration is bankrupt and its image has collapsed.”
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