Inside China’s Police State Tactics Against Muslims

A massive police database obtained by The Intercept provides groundbreaking insight into the pervasive surveillance state operated by the Chinese government to repress Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities. This week on Intercepted: A new report from The Intercept provides a raw glimpse into the persecution and sweeping internment of Muslims in the city of Ürümqi, the largest city in northwest China’s Xinjiang region.

The report also confirms many of the anti-democratic systems already in place: child separation and carceral re-education, installation of surveillance cameras inside private homes and mosques, immense detention centers, constant police checkpoints, widespread collection of electronic and biometric data, demolition of Uyghur cemeteries, and the forced abortion and sterilization of women.

Although the United States has surveilled, abused, rendered, and imprisoned Muslims for decades, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declared that China is committing “ongoing” genocide. His successor, Antony Blinken, agreed with that characterization during his confirmation hearing in January.

The Intercept’s Ryan Tate, technology reporter Yael Grauer, and anthropologist Darren Byler analyze the unprecedented scale and sophistication of the surveillance campaign detailed in the database. We also hear Uyghur linguist and poet Abduweli Ayup tell the story of his 15-month detainment for operating a Uyghur-language kindergarten in Xinjiang.


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