mandag 11. april 2022

Uyghurs in exile grapple with discussing genocide in Xinjiang with their children

The 12-year old Uyghur girl, who now lives in the U.S. state of Virginia, was about seven years old and starting to absorb a bit more knowledge when she first learned about the repression of Uyghurs in their homeland northwestern China’s Xinjiang region. As she got older, her mother would tell her more and more about the back story, bringing it up in the normal course of conversation or if they were in the car and the girl asked a question about her grandparents still in Xinjiang.

“I felt really sad,” the girl said about when her parents starting telling her about the crackdown.

The girl, who spoke on condition of anonymity and did not want to identify her parents to avoid endangering relatives in Xinjiang, said that the pain hit home with her when schoolmates would talk about where they were from originally. When the girl thought about her family coming from Xinjiang, other questions would arise, such as why her grandmother would never come to visit her family in the U.S.

Her voice grows weaker and begins to trail off whenever she is asked about her hometown.