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Guangzhou blast: Chinese society marked by simmering resistance

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Guangzhou blast: Chinese society marked by simmering resistance

The Chinese society is witnessing simmering resistance and this was recently manifested in a bomb blast in Mingjing, a small village in the otherwise prosperous Guangzhou region.

Last month a man detonated himself through a homemade bomb blowing up four other people besides himself in Mingjing, according to Chinese media reports. These reports did not cite any reason behind the act.

Guangzhou has been witness to several such incidents which have highlighted the simmering resistance in the society. Guangzhou is a commercial hub and hosts a lot of industries. The labour in these industries is sourced from the restive Xinjiang. This serves the twin purpose of changing the demography of Xinjiang and providing for cheap captive labour. Studies have pointed out that between 2017-2019 alone, 80,000 Uyghurs have been relocated from Xinjiang to other parts of China.

Footage of these Uyghurs being transported to remote parts of China as forced labour (CBN News, Channel 4 News, BBC) confirms this. The policy involves a high degree of coercion and is designed to assimilate minorities by changing their lifestyles.

“Guangzhou by virtue of being an industrial hub has afforded more opportunities for the expression of this angst. Guangzhou hosts a large number of people from Africa and Middle East, who demand halal meat. This is provided by ethnic Uyghur restaurants in the city. The increasing crackdown on Islam in China initially forced these restaurants remove the Arabic signage’s, which brought a dip in their business. Added to this was the ousting of foreigners by the Chinese government to rein in the corona virus spread has resulted in hardships to these Uyghur eateries,”according a recent report in Euroreporter, Brussels based European multimedia news platform.

“The forced relocation and the restrictive employment opportunities have added to the frustration of the Uyghur minority. Last year, the chief of rebel TIP Abdul Haq Turkistani, had appealed to the Taliban and Al Qaeda to support the Uyghur cause. A pro-TIP telegram channel claimed the blast as retribution for the injustices met out to the Uyghurs. It further warned of similar attacks across China,” according to Euroreporter.

“The growing restlessness and insecurity amongst the Uyghur is a cause for concern. Irrespective of the justification and success stories that the government peddles to support its education camps, the fact remains that denying the Uyghurs right to religion and freedom of expression is not only a violation of the Chinese constitution, it is also repression of the human rights. The government will have to rework its policy and ideate on a more heterogeneous approach to the issue,” according to the Euroreporter.

Published at Wed, 07 Apr 2021 12:24:17 +0000