One of them is Mr. Chen Quanguo, the CCP Secretary of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. His indictment is the first step in the application of the “Global Magnitsky Act”
by Marco Respinti
We had just the time to underline the important moral stand for freedom of Tibet, shown by the US State Department on July 7 in retaliating against China’s policy on access to Tibetan areas for US personnel and citizens, and comparing that to the US commitment to freedom in Xinjiang and Hong Kong, that the US announced another important measure, regarding persecuted Uyghurs and other Turkic minorities.
On July 9, US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, imposed sanctions and visa restrictions on three CCP officials in response to the ongoing human rights violations and abuses in Xinjiang, that Uyghurs prefer to call East Turkestan. The three indicted officials are: Mr. Chen Quanguo, the CCP Secretary of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region; Mr. Zhu Hailun, Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Political and Legal Committee; and Mr. Wang Mingshan, the current Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau (XPSB). As the measure says, “they and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States.”
One of the most important element in this decision is that in the past Mr. Chen Quanguo has been singled out as a possible candidate for targeted sanctions under the “Global Magnitsky Act”, i.e., formally, the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, an extension of the Russia and Moldova Jackson-Vanik Repeal and Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012, which allows the U.S. Government to sanction foreign government officials implicated in human rights abuses anywhere in the world.
In fact, the decision by the US State Department openly amounts to a first step toward the application of the “Global Magnitsky Act” against CCP leaders, and this is both unprecedented and important.
Mr. Pompeo clearly stated it in “designating the XPSB, as well as four current or former officials of the People’s Republic of China – Chen Quanguo; Zhu Hailun; Wang Mingshan; and Huo Liujun – for their roles in serious human rights abuse” and pointing at “Executive Order 13818, ‘Blocking the Property of Persons Involved in Serious Human Rights Abuse or Corruption,’ which builds upon and implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.”
Secretary Pompeo also underlined that, “[b]efore ramping up the CCP’s campaign of repression in Xinjiang, Chen oversaw extensive abuses in Tibetan areas, using many of the same horrific practices and policies CCP officials currently employ in Xinjiang.”
The US State Department seems then to be launching another warning to China. Its words cannot be misinterpreted: “The United States will not stand idly by as the CCP carries out human rights abuses targeting Uyghurs, ethnic Kazakhs, and members of other minority groups in Xinjiang, to include forced labor, arbitrary mass detention, and forced population control, and attempts to erase their culture and Muslim faith.” It also calls “on all nations who share our concerns about the CCP’s attacks on human rights and fundamental freedoms to join us in condemning this behavior.” The American confrontation with the Red Dragon may be near a point of no return.