Germany halts Uighur deportations to China | News | DW | 23.08.2018
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Germany halts Uighur deportations to China

The German government has suspended deportations of Uighurs to China until further notice, according to a media report. The Muslim minority faces discrimination and persecution in the northwestern Xinjiang region.

Uighurs and members of other Muslim minorities will no longer be deported from Germany to China, the Süddeutscher Zeitung reported on Thursday citing an Interior Ministry response to a Green party information request.

The ministry said expulsions had been put on hold because the country analysis department of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees had only recently compiled relevant country information concerning the plight of the Uighurs.

Read moreHow do deportations work in Germany? 

Persecuted ethnic group

Uighur Muslims are a minority in the autonomous Xinjiang region in China's northwest. They have historically been targets of discrimination and a raft of restrictions imposed on them by the government in Beijing. Earlier this month, a United Nations human rights committee raised serious concerns about the treatment of Uighurs in China, saying they were seen as "enemies of the state," with hundreds of thousands being kept in facilities resembling secret internment camps.

China claims Xinjiang faces threats from Islamist extremists  seeking to carry out attacks and foment unrest between the Uighur minority and the Han majority. Hundreds of people have died in violence in the restive territory in recent years. 

Read moreGermany admits to 5 illegal deportations

In April, authorities in the German state of Bavaria mistakenly deported a Uighur asylum-seeker to China due to an administrative error. According to the German dpa news agency, Berlin is trying to bring the 23-year-old back, but his whereabouts are unknown.

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Reports of abusive indoctrination camps in western China

nm/sms (Reuters, AFP, dpa)

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