TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - The statement by Iran's permanent mission to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva came after European countries accused China of mass detention of Uighurs.
“Once again, the noble objective of promotion and protection of human rights has served the political interests of a few States that regard human rights as a means in their foreign policy toolbox to exert pressure on the countries they disfavor,” said the mission.
On Wednesday, 18 European countries including Germany, Britain and France condemned what they described as China’s “mass arbitrary detention” of Uighur and other minorities in the country's far western region of Xinjiang.
The letter, addressed to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, accused Beijing of inflicting torture and carrying out a political indoctrination against an estimated 1 million Uighur and other Turkic Muslims at detention camps.
The Chinese government has frequently denied allegations that the Uighur minority living in the country’s far west are being held in such internment camps.
In its statement, the Iranian mission criticized the “unacceptable practice of some Western countries towards China, and application of double standards and abuse of human rights under the pretext of minority situation in this country”.
Resource-rich and strategically located on the borders of Central Asia, Xinjiang is key to China’s growing energy needs.
The autonomous region is home to around 10 million Turkic-speaking Uighur Muslims, accounting for 45 percent of Xinjiang’s population. The Muslim minorities in China’s west have long accused Beijing of cultural, religious and economic discrimination.
Beijing has been under fire since last August, when a UN human rights panel reported that numerous camps had been set up in China’s vast Xinjiang region, holding as many as one million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims.
“The fact that the same states routinely turn a blind eye to the gross and systematic violations of human rights, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by themselves and their allies against innocent populations in Yemen and Palestine, reveals the true face and intention of sponsors of the letter,” the Iranian statement said.
“Regrettably the casual application of such obvious double standards by them has relegated the international human rights mechanisms to political instruments that they conveniently abuse against whomever that is considered unfriendly,” it added.
Chinese officials have time and again dismissed such allegations and instead characterized the camps as “vocational education and employment training centers” for “criminals involved in minor offenses”.
Source: Press TV