India refrained from voting on the draft resolution to discuss the human rights situation in Jinjiang province

(Yoshita Singh)

United Nations/Geneva, Oct 6 (PTI) India did not participate in voting on a draft resolution in the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to discuss the human rights situation in China’s troubled Xinjiang region.

Human rights groups have been ringing alarm bells for years over incidents (of human rights abuses) in the resource-rich northwestern Chinese province. They allege that China has detained more than one million Uighurs in alleged “re-education camps” against their will.

The draft resolution was rejected in the forty-seven-member council, as 17 members voted in favor and 19 countries, including China, voted against the draft resolution. 11 countries including India, Brazil, Mexico and Ukraine did not take part in the vote.

The subject of the draft resolution was “Discussion on the Human Rights Situation in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China”.

The draft proposal was presented by a core group consisting of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the UK and the US, and was co-sponsored by several countries, including Turkey.

Sophie Richardson, China’s director of Human Rights Watch, said in a statement that for the first time in its history, the UN’s top human rights body considered a proposal to debate the human rights situation in China’s Xinjiang region.

Serious allegations of human rights violations against Uighurs and other Muslim-majority communities in China have been brought to the attention of the UN Human Rights Office and the UN human rights apparatus since late 2017.

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