Last week, a report by the BBC included interviews with four women who claimed they were “systematically raped, sexually abused, and tortured” while held in the XUAR’s vast network of internment camps, where authorities are believed to have held up to 1.8 million Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities since early 2017. China’s Foreign Ministry and state media quickly dismissed the report as lies, repeating claims that there are no internment camps in the XUAR and attacking the credibility of the women who spoke to the BBC.
One of the women cited in the report, Tursunay Ziawudun, said she spent nine months detained at a camp before she was able to flee the country and relocate to the U.S. She told the BBC that women were removed from their cells “every night” and raped by masked Chinese men, and that she was tortured and later gang-raped on three occasions.
“Their crimes and their oppression have woken us up,” she told RFA’s Uyghur Service. “If investigators are able to go back and see what’s happening there, I will go with them.”