(Urumqi, Xinjiang—June 21, 2018) Delivery service to the Persian festival of Nowruz in Urumqi was forcibly shut down by the Xinjiang government to prevent people from celebrating the festival, which takes place on the lunar calendar’s spring equinox day. Additionally, a citizen of Kazakhstan, Beysen Nuriylen, was arrested on June 5.
The Xinjiang government ostensibly set up laws to provide a holiday to delivery companies during the period of Nowruz. However, local Kazakh’s believe that the vacation days of the delivery companies is only a way to stop people from celebrating the festival and to suppress their outward expressions of their belief.
During the previous season of Ramadan, the Xinjiang government forbade fasting and burned copies of the Qur’an. Locals believe that the Xinjiang authorities wish to eliminate Islam from the region altogether.
Beysen Nuriylen was sent to a re-education camp with no mention of his crime or length of sentence. His brother, Beysen Xamsidin, has asked the Kazakh Foreign Affairs Ministry to intervene on his brother’s behalf, citing Nuriylen’s Kazakh citizenship.
ChinaAid seeks to reveal the suppression and incarceration of ethnic minorities in an effort to promulgate freedom of religion, rule of law, and human rights.