Precious Little Space for Uyghur or Tibetan Grievances.

Written by Elliot Sperling. It’s already been many years since anyone seriously asserted that continuing political liberalization would be the certain result of economic growth in post-Mao China. One might propose, however, that we are seeing something somewhat opposite: as economic indicators turn downward the post-1989 idea that if left to its authoritarian ways the …

The “Terror” Angle in China’s Domestic “Stability Maintenance.”

Written by Tom Cliff. The foremost aim of Chinese authorities’ “Uyghur terror-threat” mobilisation outside Xinjiang is stability among the Han majority. Initially confined to Xinjiang, China has significantly expanded “anti-terror” mobilisation across the country. Urban police forces are rapidly being augmented with paramilitary units, and equipment including armoured cars and semi-automatic weapons. The Chinese authorities employ …

Cracks in China’s New Silk Road

Written by Michael Clarke. Francis Fukuyama recently argued that President Xi Jinping’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ (OBOR) strategy ‘represents a striking departure in Chinese policy’ whereby Beijing is ‘seeking to export its development model to other countries.’ The OBOR’s emphasis on ‘on massive state-led investments in infrastructure’ to facilitate trans-Eurasian economic interconnectivity, he notes, contrasts with …

What Explains the Rise of Ethnic Minority Tensions in China?

Written by Reza Hasmath. Ethnic minority tensions have been on the rise in mainland China. In mid-September 2015, a knife-wielding attack in Aksu, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) claimed the lives of nearly 50 individuals and injured another 50. This followed numerous outbursts of ethnic violence between Uyghurs and Han in Kunming (March 2014), and in …

Learning Party-speak: What the New Textbook for Dislocated Minority Students Tells us about China

Written by James Leibold and Timothy A. Grose. Over the last thirty years, China has been engaged in a poorly understood experiment in multicultural education. Since 1980 the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been uprooting Tibetan, Uyghur and other minority youths from their communities in Western China and schooling them in the language and culture …

Spatial Results of the 2010 Census in Xinjiang

Written by Stanley Toops. In this entry, I profile the spatial pattern of minzu (ethnicity) and population of the 2010 census of Xinjiang. The 2010 census shows Xinjiang as having 21.82 million people; the 2000 census registered 18.46 million. The population is concentrated in two segments, the corridor on the northern foothills of the Tengri Tagh …

Awaiting Pu Zhiqiang’s sentence: how many months is a tweet worth?

Written by Jackie Sheehan. At the time of writing, speculation continues as to the sentence Pu Zhiqiang can expect on the charges of inciting racial hatred and “picking quarrels and stirring up trouble” on which he was tried a week ago. An acquittal can safely be discounted, as he was still put on trial after 19 …

Xinjiang, Terror, and China’s Contempt for Freedom of the Press

Written by J. Michael Cole There’s a reason why China ranks No. 176 out of 180 countries in the Reporters Without Borders 2015 World Press Freedom Index, only better than Eritrea, North Korea, Turkmenistan and Syria. Its contempt for journalists, both domestic and foreign, who refuse to toe Beijing’s stridently nationalistic and increasingly paranoid line …

Talking about China’s human rights

 Written by Xu Ruike. It is unsurprising that British journalists and commentators were obsessive in criticizing China’s human right records during President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the UK last week. Their sincerity concerning human rights in China should not be questioned. But sincerity does not mean impartiality. Their viewpoints regarding the situation of China’s human rights are often …

The Silk Road Economic Belt and Its Discontents

Written by Ivaylo Gatev. On 18 November 2014, an international freight train left the Yiwu railway container centre in China’s eastern Zhejiang province and began a 13,000km journey to the west. The train crossed China’s western border at the Alataw pass in Xinjiang province and made its way through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland, Germany and …