China accuses UNHRC Chief of backing Uighur separatists
China lashed out at UN rights chief Zeid Raad al Hussein for attending a ceremony to confer rights award on jailed Uighur academic Ilham Tohti from Xinjiang, saying it was tantamount to backing separatists.
“As a senior official of the UN, the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights confounded right from wrong by attending the awarding ceremony irrespective of the facts and blatantly supported separatists,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang told a media briefing here.
“This behaviour has violated the purposes and principles of the UN charter and interference in China s domestic affairs,” he said, criticising Raad al Hussein for attending the award ceremony in Geneva.
“There is always certain group of people who turns a blind eye to the crimes committed by separatists and even by extremists and terrorists to the Chinese people and use every means to cover their behaviour under the excuse of human rights. This is defiance to human rights and rule of law,” he said.
He also criticised the award to Tohti, a prominent ethnic Uighur academic who is serving life imprisonment for the past two years in China for promoting separatism and violence.Geng said Tohti’s criminal activity was supported by solid evidence.
“While a teacher, he used to openly call terrorists and extremists ‘heroes,’ and deluded and coerced people to go abroad and engage in East Turkistan separatist activities,” Geng said.
Tohti had planned and organised a series of separatist criminal activities, he said.
China is battling the militancy in Xinjiang, the home for Uighur Muslims of Turkik origin.
The province was on the boil for the past few years over Uighur unrest over increasing settlements from China s majority Han community.
China accuses East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) active in Xinjiang for host of violent incidents in the province and other parts of China.