Last week, the Lantos Foundation joined the Uyghur National Movement and members of the local Uyghur community in a powerful protest outside the Chinese Embassy in Washington, DC. Most of those present have had family members detained or disappeared in the Xinjiang region’s notorious “re-education camps”. These prisons are only the latest attempt by the repressive Chinese government to silence and indoctrinate this proud ethnic minority.
I can't begin to express how heartbreaking it was to have dozens and dozens of protesters show me picture after picture of their missing family members; some had one missing family member, others had dozens of relatives who have disappeared, some victims were teenagers, others elderly and every age in between. I promised them that the Lantos Foundation would continue our efforts to help their family members and to pressure the Chinese government to stop this gross violation of basic human rights.
The fight continues later this week in Europe, where the World Uyghur Congress has taken the lead in organizing a large-scale protest in Brussels, Belgium this Friday, April 27th. During the protest, they will present a petition calling on the European Union to demand that China release the 1 million Uyghurs arbitrarily detained in 're-education' camps. They would like to include as many signatures as possible, so if you are willing to lend your name, please Sign the petition here.
We stand in solidarity with the World Uyhgur Congress and all Uyghur organizations that are fighting to end this massive human rights violation. We must demand that our government, the EU, and all responsible governments of the world take action to end what is one of the largest cases of arbitrary detention in modern history.
We are honored to have your support in this ongoing effort, and would greatly appreciate you adding your name to the World Uyghur Congress's petition.
Sign the petition here.
Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett