Renowned Islamic scholars laud religious freedom, minority rights during Xinjiang visit

ISLAMABAD: A delegation of world-renowned Islamic experts and scholars recently paid a visit to the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region at the invitation of the local government, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Friday.

Led by Chairman of World Muslim Communities Council, Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, the visiting team composed of more than 30 members from 14 countries, including the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Bahrain, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mauritania, Tunisia, South Sudan and Serbia, he said during his regular briefing held at International Press Center (IPC).

During the trip, the delegation visited Urumqi, Altay and Kashgar, saw an exhibition on counter-terrorism and de-radicalization and visited mosques, the Xinjiang Islamic Institute, local companies and old streets and towns.

They also visited Uyghur families, prayed together with local Muslims at a mosque and participated with locals in a workshop on rural revitalization and poverty alleviation, he added.

The spokesperson informed that members of the delegation said they were deeply impressed by Xinjiang’s achievement in development and stability over the past decade.

They saw a safe, prosperous and stable Xinjiang where Muslims can freely exercise their ethnic and religious rights, and people from all ethnic backgrounds live in harmony as equals.

The Chinese government has made enormous efforts to protect Xinjiang’s multi-ethnic culture. China’s counter-terrorism and de-radicalization policies have been very successful and delivered benefits to people of all ethnic groups.

Wang said that members of the delegation said that what they saw in Xinjiang is entirely different from what has been painted by some media, and the accusations against Xinjiang’s human rights situation and so-called Uyghur cultural genocide are nothing but distortion of facts. The Islamic civilization and the Chinese civilization have interacted with each other amicably throughout the ages.

They members of the delegation expressed readiness to deepen cooperation between the Islamic world and China and firmly support China’s position on Xinjiang-related issues, he added.

“Seeing is believing. People can tell right from wrong. The experience of the world-renowned Islamic religious figures in Xinjiang once again shows that truth will not be hidden by lies, and those who seek to smear China by manipulating Xinjiang-related issues will not have their way,” they commented.

The spokesperson said that China welcomes friends from all countries to visit Xinjiang and experience first-hand Xinjiang’s social stability, economic prosperity, ethnic harmony and freedom of belief.

Mian Abrar
Mian Abrar
The writer heads Pakistan Today's Islamabad Bureau. He has a special focus on counter-terrorism and inter-state relations in Asia, Asia Pacific and South East Asia regions. He tweets as @mian_abrar and also can be reached at [email protected]


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