What did China's Xi Jinping miss in key party speech? Any mention of Xinjiang

Published on Oct 16, 2022 11:27 AM IST

Xi Jinping: Xi Jinping, in his speech said that China must strengthen the unity of all ethnic groups and overseas Chinese without mentioning Xinjiang.

Xi Jinping: China's President Xi Jinping waves as he arrives for the opening session of the 20th Chinese Communist Party's Congress.(AFP)
Xi Jinping: China's President Xi Jinping waves as he arrives for the opening session of the 20th Chinese Communist Party's Congress.(AFP)

China's President Xi Jinping kicked off the five-yearly Communist Party congress with a wide-ranging speech on Sunday defending zero-Covid approach, talking about Taiwan, Hong Kong and China's plan for itself and the country's relationship with the world. But Xinjiang did not find a mention in his speech that lasted for about two hours.

Read more: Watch: Even serving tea is a choreographed spectacle at China’s party meet

Xi Jinping, in his speech said that China must strengthen the unity of all ethnic groups and overseas Chinese without mentioning Xinjiang, where China has been accused of human rights abuses against the Uygurs and members of other minorities, China has denied all of the charges.

A draft resolution at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) seeking a debate on the human rights situation in Xinjiang region was presented last week by a group of countries comprising Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the UK and the US. It was co-sponsored by other countries such as Turkey.

The vote ultimately went in favour of China, with 19 members of UNHRC opposing the resolution, and 11 members, including India, Malaysia and Ukraine, abstaining.

China's Xinjiang region was also hit with curbs last week after the country’s largest province with a population of around 22 million people reported at least 97 new asymptomatic infections.

Local officials in at least four cities in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR), including capital Urumqi, told residents not to leave as authorities doubled down on the country’s “zero-Covid” policy.

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