lørdag 27. mars 2021

Xinjiang cotton: How do I know if it's in my jeans?

Xinjiang cotton is some of the best fabric in the world. It's also, human rights campaigners say, produced by forced labour. Some Western brands have removed it from their supply chains, leading to a backlash from Chinese celebrities and netizens. Welcome to the row over cotton from the Xinjiang region of China.Rights groups say Xinjiang's Uighur minority (also spelled as "Uyghur") are being persecuted and conscripted for forced labour.

Evidence shown to the BBC suggests that upwards of half a million Uighur minority workers a year are being marshalled into seasonal cotton pickingunder conditions that appear to raise a high risk of coercion.

"Right now, there is near certainty that any brand sourcing apparel, textiles, yarn or cotton from the Uyghur Region is profiting from human rights violations, including forced labour, both in the Uyghur Region and more broadly throughout China," says the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region, whose members include Anti-Slavery International and the World Uyghur Congress.