Indonesia Denounces ‘Politicization’ of UN Council After Rejecting Debate on Uyghur Abuses

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Indonesia’s government said it rejected a Western-led proposal to debate China’s alleged human rights abuses in Xinjiang as it seeks to avoid the “politicization” of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

A total of 17 countries voted in favor, 19 were against, and 11 abstained in a vote to debate the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) suppression of Muslim Uyghurs and other minorities in Xinjiang.

Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim country, was among those 19 nations that voted against the motion, besides Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and Pakistan.

Febrian Ruddyard, Indonesia’s permanent representative to the U.N., said the motion would “not yield meaningful progress” because it “does not enjoy the consent and support of the concerned country,” Benar News reported.

Achsanul Habib, director of human rights at Indonesia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry, said that UNHRC member states should engage in “impartial dialogue” and not take a selective approach to human rights issues.

“We voted ‘no’ because we don’t want the politicization of the Human Rights Council, [for it] to be used for the purpose of political rivalry,” he told reporters on Friday.

Achsanul noted that Indonesia has consulted with all parties regarding its decision, including China and those who have backed the proposal.

Human Rights Groups Voice Regrets

The United States, Britain, Canada, Australia, Lithuania, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland sought a debate on the human rights situation in Xinjiang after a U.N. report alleged possible crimes against humanity.

Had the motion been passed by the UNHRC, victims and activists would have been able to tell the international community about the real situation in the region, the World Uyghur Congress said in a statement.

“We deeply regret that 19 governments decided to oppose dialogue on the issue, while 11 states preferred to remain silent in light of genocide and crimes against humanity,” said Dolkun Isa, president of the World Uyghur Congress.

It urged countries to refrain from expelling Uyghurs and Turkic Muslims from their territories back to China, and instead provide them humanitarian assistance, including medical and psychosocial support.

The International Service for Human Rights (ISHR) has pledged to continue efforts to hold China accountable for its atrocities in Xinjiang.

“It is shameful that Global South governments who profess their commitment to dialogue, Muslim countries supposedly committed to religious rights and freedoms, and African governments who purport to oppose systematic discrimination have overwhelmingly failed to even support a U.N. discussion on rights abuses against Uyghurs,” said Phil Lynch, ISHR executive director.

Aldgra Fredly


Aldgra Fredly is a freelance writer based in Malaysia, covering Asia Pacific news for The Epoch Times.

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