INTERPOL’s CCF continues to receive requests to remove Chinese dissidents and political opponents from the organization’s wanted list.

While such requests often concern former government officials who have run afoul of the Chinese Communist Party, a recent report highlights the case of Yidiresi Aishan, a private citizen and Uyghur activist. Aishan is in exile from China’s northwestern region of Xinjiang, a predominantly Turkic-speaking ethnic group primarily from China’s northwestern region of Xinjiang.

Aishan is a 34-year-old computer engineer and father of three who had resided in Turkey since 2012. He was reportedly employed as a web designer who also worked on a Uyghur diaspora online newspaper and assisted other activists in media outreach and collecting testimonies of abuse in China’s Xinjiang province.

The CCF (Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s Files) has blocked the Red Notice for Yidiresi Aishan as reported here.

INTERPOL reportedly commented on the case, stating:

“Given that new information has been brought to the attention of the General Secretariat, the red notice previously issued for Yidiresi Aishan has been suspended while a new review is undertaken.”

The persecution and illegal detention of Uyghur minorities in China have been well-documented since 2017. While Chinese authorities initially denied the existence of detention camps where Uyghurs were being held, in 2019 it issued a statement categorizing the camps as “Vocational Education and Training” facilities, claiming that the camps were necessary to combat “terrorism and extremism” in China and justifying them as follows:

Xinjiang is a key battlefield in the fight against terrorism and extremism in China. For some time Xinjiang has been plagued by terrorism and religious extremism, which pose a serious threat to the lives of the people in the region. Addressing both the symptoms and root causes and integrating preventative measures and a forceful response, Xinjiang has established vocational education and training centers in accordance with the law to prevent the breeding and spread of terrorism and religious extremism, effectively curbing the frequent terrorist incidents and protecting the rights to life, health, and development of the people of all ethnic groups. Worthwhile results have been achieved.

In light of this statement, it appears that Chinese authorities have no plans to change their approach to governing Xinjiang or the Uyghur population.

In the next post, we’ll address the political and economic reasons that we should expect to see China’s continued efforts to keep a stronghold on the Xinjian region.

As always, thoughts and comments are welcomed.