News World Canberra pursues China over mass detention

Canberra pursues China over mass detention

Foreign Minister Marise Payne. Photo: Getty
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Australia has committed to pursuing China over its mass detention of more than one million Muslim Uighurs.

Canberra co-signed a letter to the UN Human Rights Council last week, urging Beijing to end arbitrary detention of Uighurs and other ethnic minorities.

Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne says the letter signed by 22 nations reflects an increasing focus on the arbitrary forced detention camps in far western China.

“We’ve said very consistently that we are deeply concerned about the human rights situation in Xinjiang, including the use of detention facilities,” Senator Payne told ABC Radio National on Monday.

“Those concerns have been raised with China regularly, including directly be me, in my visit last year.”

Beijing has retaliated to the UN letter by accusing countries such as Australia of “smearing” China and interfering in its internal affairs.