Uyghur Muslim Scholar Nine Years jailed, for refusing to cooperate with Chinese

2015-04-11 05:16:38 | Al Muslim News
Uyghur Muslim Scholar Nine Years jailed, for refusing to cooperate with Chinese

 

A Chinese court in restive Xinjiang region has sentenced a prominent ethnic Uyghur Muslim religious scholar to nine years prison for “refusing to cooperate†with Chinese authorities, according to police officials.
According to reports on Uyghur social media, Islamic Scholar Qamber Amber was handed nine years behind bars following a March 21 public trial at a school in Hotan county in Xingiang.
Amber was among 17 people charged with “various crimes related to state security,†the reports said, without providing details of the verdicts for the other 16 defendants, RFA reported.
Head of the Hanerik police station Abdugheni Zakir said Amber, who had been stripped of his role as imam of Hanerik Mosque in 2004 for criticizing discrimination against Uyghur Muslims in his speeches, had been offered reinstatement last year, but refused to join due to health problems.
Police official said “Later, we found that he had been traveling everywhere in Hotan to participate in public events, including weddings and burial ceremonies, and he has never refused to preach in public if requested.†Amber had most recently given a speech at a Muslim marriage ceremony, despite restrictions on religious speeches without permits.
“Although he didn’t criticize state policy or instigate anything, his speech was not in line with what the government encourages,†he said.
When asked what law in the Chinese constitution Amber had broken, Police Station Incharge Zakir was unable to give details.
“There is a footnote to every law which [informs local authorities]: ‘You can implement this law as needed according to your specific situation.’ In our area, stability is the primary goal—that is how we are following the regulations and have not contradicted any lawâ€, he said.
Police Official defended Amber’s sentence, saying the scholar’s refusal to accept the position of imam and
“He has not stopped teaching and discussing religious topics, despite warnings from the local police,†he said.
Police Official also referred to Amber’s composition of a poem in 2002 titled “It is Hard to be Muslim in Hotan,†“He never learned his lesson from the situation in Hotan, where many bloody incidents and trials against religious activity have occurred.â€
A teacher from Hotan, who also declined to give his identity, said “In our land, the authorities—especially the Han Chinese—don’t know what the Uyghur people are thinking and feeling, despite living together for more than 50 yearsâ€.
“Meanwhile, Uyghur [officials] have no courage to speak reality, because they were chosen only according to their loyalty to the government,†he said.
In recent years, China’s communist government has launched a series of “strike hard†campaigns in Xinjiang in the name of religious extremism.
The targets of these operations, the Turkic-speaking, Muslim Uyghurs minority, complain of pervasive ethnic discrimination, Anti-Islam, and cultural suppression by China authorities.

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Tags: #Anti-Islam #Anti-Muslim #Muslim-minorities #Uyghr-Muslim #Discrimination #China #

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