RFA’s Uyghur Service recently received a tip from a source with knowledge of the situation that two young Uyghur men named Zikrulla and Kadirdin may have been taken into custody by authorities in the XUAR’s prefectural-level city of Karamay (in Chinese, Kelemayi) after neither returned to the Tianjin University of Commerce (TUC) for the fall semester following their summer break. The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisal, only provided the first names of the students, the school they attend, and their hometown. Located near China’s border with Kazakhstan, Karamay is 3,275 kms (2,010 miles) from coastal Tianjin.
RFA spoke with an officer at a police station in Karamay who refused to answer questions about the two young men before hanging up the phone. An employee at the TUC told RFA that he was unsure of whether Zikrulla and Kadirdin were studying at the school and referred questions to another office for professors who “specialize in managing the affairs of ethnic-minority students.”