Post Tagged with: "BBC"
Ilham Tohti: Uighur activist’s daughter fears for his life
BBC News 18 December 2019 The daughter of Ilham Tohti, a Uighur intellectual who has been imprisoned in China, has said she does not know if her father is alive. Jewher Ilham made the remark after accepting a top European human rights prize on behalf of her father. Ilham Tohti was jailed for life on separatism charges in 2014. China has provoked an international outcry its treatment of Uighurs, an indigenous Muslim minority, in the western Xinjiang region. Mr Tohti, an economics scholar, is known for his research on relations between the Uighur and Han people. Ozil removed from PES 2020 in China China’s hidden camps Prosecutors at his trial in 2014 alleged he was engaging in separatist activities, including promoting independence for Xinjiang on his website, Uighur Online. The website aimed to educate both Chinese and Uighur speakers about social issues. He denied being a separatist, and was seen by many as a moderate voice. Ms Ilham says she has not seen her father since 2013 and has had no communication with him for two years. He was awarded the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought for promoting “dialogue and mutual understanding” between the Uighur and other Chinese people. Ms Ilham said her father had been labelled “a violent extremist, with a disease that needs to be cured and mind that needs to be washed”. “I am grateful for the opportunity to tell his story, because he cannot tell it himself,” said Ms Ilham, who received the award in the French city of Strasbourg next to a symbolic empty chair. “To be honest with you, I do not know where my father is. 2017 was the last time my family received word about him.” “Today should be a moment of joy to celebrate freedom of speech,” said […]
Sakharov Prize: Jailed Uighur academic Ilham Tohti wins award
BBC News 24 October 2019 An academic jailed for separatism in China has been awarded the European Parliament’s top human rights prize. Ilham Tohti, who is from the Uighur minority, has been a fierce critic of China’s treatment of the Uighur people. He was jailed for life in 2014. More than a million Uighurs and other ethnic minorities are reported to have been held in camps in China’s restive Xinjiang region. Mr Tohti, seen by many as a moderate voice, has denied being a separatist. Although still in jail, Mr Tohti, 49, has been recognised for drawing attention to ethnic tensions in Xinjiang. A ceremony awarding him the Sakharov Prize in his absence will be held in Strasbourg in December. The Uighur geography teacher who vanished in China The vanished Uighurs of Xinjiang China’s Muslim ‘crackdown’ explained China had accused him of separatism and stoking ethnic tensions. The economics scholar’s imprisonment provoked condemnation from human rights groups, with the UN, the EU and US calling for his release. The EU Parliament said Mr Tohti deserved the Sakharov Prize for his attempts to “foster dialogue” between Chinese people and the Uighur. “The parliament calls on the Chinese authorities to release him immediately,” EU Parliament President David Sassoli said. The Sakharov Prize for free speech is awarded by the EU Parliament annually in memory of Soviet physicist and dissident Andrei Sakharov. Other nominees for the 2019 prize included Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny, prominent Brazilian gay rights activist Jean Wyllys and the Restorers, a group of student app developers from Kenya. Previous winners have included Pakistani schoolgirl and campaigner Malala Yousafzai (2013), Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas (2010) and two Yazidi women who escaped Islamic State (2016). Who is Ilham Tohti? Born in the city of Artush in Xinjiang, Mr Tohti is an […]