China has gone all in on its propaganda campaign to convince the world it is not abusing its Muslim minorities with a staged video of their ‘stable, happy life’.
This is despite damning figures being released this week showing a dramatic decline in Uyghur birth rates.
The number of children born between 2017 to 2019 nearly halved as the result of a shocking crackdown by Chinese authorities.
But Beijing’s ‘Wolf Warrior’ diplomats and Communist Party-backed newspapers have tried desperately to spin the shocking statistics and fend off accusations of a slow-moving genocide.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian even retweeted a TikTok video showing thousands of people celebrating the Eid-al-Fitr festival, which commemorates the end of the sacred month of Ramadan.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian (pictured) even retweeted a TikTok video showing thousands of people celebrating the Eid-al-Fitr festival which commemorates the end of the sacred month of Ramadan.
The footage captures a sea of worshippers awkwardly dancing in the city of Kashgar, where human rights groups say ethnic minorities are being rounded up, tortured and detained in ‘re-education camps’.
They are then said to be forced to disavow their religion and swear their loyalty to the Communist Party.
The vast majority of the comments appear to be from ‘bot’ accounts, praising the Chinese regime and demonising ‘Western media’ and other so-called anti-China forces.
But Nurmuhammad Majid, the President of the East Turkistan Australian Association, told Daily Mail Australia the video is an orchestrated charade.
‘This is clearly a propaganda film made by the Chinese government,’ he said.
‘You may have seen this before 2016, but since then we haven’t seen anything like this.
‘However, after this week as the global community points their fingers at China condemning them, they show this video in an attempt to deny the truth.’
Mr Majid he and other groups analysed the footage and discovered that a lot of things ‘do not add up’.
‘We found that 99 per cent of the participants are male and there are a very high number of Han Chinese both in the background and as dancers,’ he said.
‘We also noticed there is actually nothing happening inside the gate of the mosque, so the videos were clearly made to deceive the international community.’
Nurmuhammad Majid, the President of the East Turkistan Australian Association (pictured left) told Daily Mail Australia the video is an orchestrated fake
Who is Nurmuhammad Majid?
Nurmuhammad Majid grew up in China’s Xinjiang Province – a region many Muslim minorities refer to as East Turkistan.
He went to university in Beijing during the 1990s and returned to become a teacher.
Soon after Mr Majid became the target of Chinese authorities and was constantly harassed by secret police.
He moved to Australia in 2005 for his safety and is not able to return home.
Mr Majid is now the President of the East Turkistan Australian Association – a community group which aims to shed light on what is happening to Uyghur Muslims in China.
His family continue to be targeted by Chinese authorities as part of the authoritarian state’s crackdown on religious freedoms
He has not heard from many of his family and friends back home, who have been detained in re-education facilities across Xinjiang.
What is a Wolf Warrior Diplomat?
Chinese diplomats around the globe have made headlines in recent years by making aggressive public statements against democratic nations – often in to the contrary of all available evidence.
Political observers say such statements are made to impress Communist Party bosses back home in Beijing so they get noticed.
The term Wolf Warrior is actually a Chinese action film franchise launched in 2015.
The plot of the 80s-style action films centre around a patriotic Chinese soldier who takes on enemies from all over the world and is fearless in the face of danger.
The man behind the retweet is the same ‘Wolf Warrior’ diplomat who posted a doctored image of an Australian soldier holding a knife to the throat of an Afghan boy last year.
But he was not the only one to try to deny the reality of what’s happening in Xinjiang.
Several articles were also published by Chinese state media in recent days painting a rosy picture of the persecuted population and blasting organisations that dared to dispute the party line.
One Global Times article took aim at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute that wrote extensively about the vast network of ‘re-education camps’ and prisons where Uighurs are separated from their families and used as forced labour.
On Thursday it also published a paper on the ‘coercive campaign to drive down the indigenous birth-rates in Xinjiang’.
China denied the ‘unprecedented and precipitous drop in official birth-rates’ is the result of re-education camps.
But the US, Germany, and Britain, among others, found that hard to swallow at a virtual UN summit on Friday.
‘We will keep standing up and speaking out until China’s government stops its crimes against humanity and the genocide of Uighurs and other minorities in Xinjiang,’ US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the event.
Last year, Zhao posted a doctored image of an Australian soldier holding a knife to the throat of an Afghan child (pictured)
China’s brutal ‘re-education camps’ are being used to repress the ethnic minority (Detainees in a Xinjiang camp are pictured)
China has a vast network of ‘re-education camps’ and prisons where Uighurs are separated from their families and used as forced labour
‘In Xinjiang, people are being tortured. Women are being forcibly sterilised,’ Thomas-Greenfield said.
The Chinese propaganda article labelled ASPI ‘notorious,’ ‘right-wing’ and ‘militaristic’ for speaking out against Beijing.
The totalitarian power has long-denied there is crackdown on Muslim minority groups after a series of deadly Islamic terror attacks in 2009.
the Chinese Communist Party also denied claims from human rights groups like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch that re-education camps existed.
In more recent years, Beijing acknowledged their existence but now claims the fortified facilities are entirely ‘voluntary’.
Despite China’s claims, indisputable evidence of the cruel reality facing Uighurs is widely available.
A 400-page document leaked in 2019 featuring a directive from President Xi Jinping outlines the intent of the authoritarian regime.
‘We must be as harsh as them… and show absolutely no mercy,’ he said.
An aerial view of a ‘re-education camp’ is pictured in the region of Xinjiang in Western China
The speeches obtained by the New York Times also quote the President-for-life saying China must use ‘organs of dictatorship’ to deal with Muslim extremism.
At the UN General Assembly in 2019, 23 nation’s including Australian condemned China for its abhorrent ‘human rights violations and abuses’.
‘The Chinese government should urgently… (refrain) from the arbitrary detention of Uyghur and members of other Muslim communities,’ the UN statement said.
This year, counties including the US, Britain, Germany, and the Netherlands, went a step further and recognised the atrocities being carried out against ethic populations as genocide.
Foreign media and independent observers are banned from travelling to Xinjiang to verify how many Uyghurs are being detained.
But it is estimated there could be up to a million Uighurs being locked up because of their religious beliefs.
China is forcing Uighur workers to mass produce face masks as part of the country’s Muslim ‘re-education’ programme during the coronavirus pandemic. The file picture taken on June 18 shows workers at a garment factory in Aketao county of the Uighur region Xinjiang
Who are the Chinese Muslims?
Muslims are not a new presence in China. Most of China’s Muslim communities, including the Hui, Uighurs and Kazakhs, have lived in China for more than 1,000 years, according to fact tank Pew Research Center.
The largest concentrations of Muslims today are in the western provinces of Xinjiang, Ningxia, Qinghai and Gansu.
A substantial number of Muslims live in the cities of Beijing, Xi’an, Tianjin and Shanghai.
Chinese Muslim men take part in gathering for the celebration of the Muslim holiday, Eid al-Adha, or the Muslim Feast of the Sacrifice, at the Niu Jie mosque in Beijing, China
They make up about two per cent of the 1.4 billion population in China. However, as the country is so populous, its Muslim population is expected to be the 19th largest in the world in 2030.
The Muslim population in China is projected to increase from 23.3 million in 2010 to nearly 30 million in 2030.
Those who grow up and live in places dominated by the Han Chinese have little knowledge about Islam – or religions in general – thus view it as a threat.
Beijing’s policymakers are predominately Han.
At the same time, radical Muslim Uighurs have killed hundreds in recent years, causing China to implement even more extreme measures to quash potential separatist movements.
Uighurs in particular have long been used to heavy-handed curbs on dress, religious practice and travel after a series of deadly riots in 2009 in Urumqi, according to the Financial Times.
Schoolchildren were banned from fasting during Ramadan and attending religious events while parents were banned from giving newborns Muslim names such as ‘Mohammed’ and ‘Jihad’.
Certain symbols of Islam, such as beards and the veil, were also forbidden. Women with face-covering veils are sometimes not allowed on buses. Unauthorised pilgrimages to Mecca were also restricted.