|Systemic racism in the US has led to ethnic minorities crying "I cannot breathe".|
Global Times: On June 29, US Secretary of State Pompeo issued a statement on Xinjiang, saying that according to German researcher Adrian Zenz, the Chinese government is using forced sterilization, forced abortion, and coercive family planning against Uyghurs and other minorities in Xinjiang, as part of a continuing campaign of repression. Does China have any comment?
Zhao Lijian: Mr. Pompeo is a brazen liar.
The Chinese government equally protects the legitimate rights and interests of people of all ethnic groups, including ethnic minorities. In fact, our population policy has long been leaning toward ethnic minorities. From 1978 to 2018, the population of Uyghurs in Xinjiang grew from 5.55 million to 11.68 million, registering a 2.1 times increase and accounting for about 46.8 percent of the total population of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. If Mr. Pompeo is telling the truth, how can he explain the big increase in the Uyghur population?
Now if we look at the US, ethnic minorities have long been suffering from bullying, exclusion and wide, systemic discrimination in economic, cultural, social and other aspects. Let's take American Indians for example. The US government has been implementing genocide, racial segregation and assimilation policies on them. In nearly a century after the country was founded, the US expelled and killed a large number of Indians through the Westward Expansion. At the beginning of the 20th century, the population of native Americans nosedived to 250,000 from 5 million in 1492, and today their population only accounts for 2 percent of the US total. After the COVID-19 outbreak, infection rate of African Americans is over five times that of Caucasians, and their mortality rate is also significantly higher, a clear sign of racial inequality. More recently, the death of African American George Floyd and subsequent mass protests expose once again the urgency of addressing systemic racism in the US, which has led to ethnic minorities crying "I cannot breathe".
I also want to stress that it's not the first time that the US cites disinformation from the anti-China researcher Adrian Zenz. As revealed by The Grayzone, an independent news website in the US, Adrian Zenz is in fact a member of a far-right organization established by the US government, and a senior fellow in a research group set up by the US intelligence community on the vocational education and training centers in Xinjiang.
We urge US politicians like Mr. Pompeo to reject bias and double standards, face up to the issue of racial discrimination at home, spend more time and energy on improving human rights conditions at home, and immediately stop smearing China and interfering in China's internal affairs by creating rumors under the pretext of Xinjiang.