Canada votes in an unprecedented way to declare China’s conduct of Uyghur Muslims an act of ‘genocide’
Canada has voted overwhelmingly in support of declaring China’s treatment of its Uyghur Muslim minority community an act of genocide. Canada’s House of Commons has passed the motion by 266-0, with complete support from leaders of opposition and few lawmakers from the governing party Liberal Party.
This motion has made Canada the second nation after the United States to declare Uyghur treatment a “genocide” by Chinese authorities.
Interestingly, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been so far hesitant in calling the treatment of Xinjiang’s Uyghur population a genocide, calling it an “extremely loaded” word that first needs to be weighed in before making a decision. Trudeau and most of his cabinet members abstained from the voting.
Another amendment to has been voted in to be passed in Canada Parliament that would call in the International Olympic Committee to move the 2022 Winter Olympics from Beijing if Chinese authorities continue to conduct genocidal atrocities against the Uyghurs.
Opposition leader Erin O’Toole said before the voting that the move was necessary to send a “clear and unequivocal signal that we will stand up for human rights and the dignity of human rights, even if it means sacrificing some economic opportunity.”
Mr. O’Toole had said in an open letter to PM Trudeau earlier this month that he must “stand up to China” as constant emergence of experiences shared by victims of human rights abuse demand an international interference and pressurize China to stop the violations against Uyghurs in “re-education” detention camps in Xinjiang province including systematic rape, forced labor, and torture.
The non-binding motion that was passed by the Canada Parliament on Monday has further strained the relations between Canada and China.
China has rejected all allegations of torture against Uyghur Muslim and other minority communities as claimed by human rights organizations. China’s ambassador in Canada Cong Peiwu, said that this motion by Canadian Parliament is a direct interference in internal affairs of China. He said, “We firmly oppose that because it runs counter to facts. There’s nothing like genocide happening in Xinjiang at all.”