UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet raised more questions than answers after what was supposed to be a fact-finding mission to the Chinese occupied East Turkistan, the homeland of Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and other Turkic groups, The Politico reports.
Bachelet did not manage to visit any operating internment camps — as Chinese officials told her all the so-called vocational training centers had closed down.
Human rights groups expected more from the first trip to China by a UN top official on human rights in nearly two decades, especially following the release of the Xinjiang Police Files containing shocking images of Uyghur detainees, some as young as 15.
After her trip, Bachelet will be confronted by the Western press. While in China, she did a video call with Chinese President Xi Jinping and a face-to-face meeting with Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who gifted her a book on Chinese Human Rights.
According to Luke de Pulford, the Coordinator of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China, Bachelet allowed Beijing to use COVID as an excuse for failing to investigate the crimes and used Beijing’s narrative of anti-terrorism measures against Uyghurs”, de Pulford said. “The whole debacle represents an appalling dereliction of duty and betrayal of Uyghurs.”