Egypt, Uighurs, Uyghurs

Egypt, Uighurs

'Nightmare' as Egypt aided China to detain Uighurs

Egypt and China sign a security memorandum focusing on 'combating terrorism' ahead of raids in Egypt in which Uighurs are questioned by Chinese officials


Egypt and China sign a security memorandum focusing on 'combating terrorism' ahead of raids in Egypt in which Uighurs are questioned by Chinese officials.

Egypt and China sign a security memorandum focusing on 'combating terrorism' ahead of raids in Egypt in which Uighurs are questioned by Chinese officials

He was picked up in broad daylight with friends, and taken to a Cairo police station where Chinese officials grilled him about what he was doing in Egypt.Abdulaziz, like most swept up in the three-day crackdown in the first week of July 2017, was an Islamic theology student at Al-Azhar, the Sunni Muslim world's most prestigious educational institution.

Just three weeks before the raid, Egypt and China signed a security memorandum focusing on"combating terrorism".Many Uighurs refer to Xinjiang as East Turkestan, including those AFP interviewed, but for Beijing it has troubling connotations of independence and activism.

Ahmed was also transferred to Tora, the stifling carceral complex which houses many of Egypt's high-profile political prisoners.The Uighurs were split into two groups of 45 to 50 men each and languished in large cells for weeks.Ahmed said Egyptian prison guards handcuffed, blindfolded and then hauled many of the group into vans heading to Cairo police stations.

Ahmed was in the green group, meaning he was eventually released. He fled to Istanbul in early October 2017.Germany-based independent researcher Adrian Zenz, who has mapped out camps in Xinjiang, said:"China's new push to redefine human rights in terms of economic development... suits many of these nations."

"Those found to be overstaying contrary to the law, including Chinese citizens among other nationalities, are expelled", said Ahmed Hafez, Egypt's foreign ministry spokesman, when asked about the deportation of Uighurs in 2017. He did not answer AFP's questions on the 60-day detention of the group that had been picked up by police.

Ayup, the linguist, explains the devastating effect of the 2017 raids that reduced a thriving community of around 6,000 people to about 50 families."It has been years since we heard anything about those deported and our families. We just don't know." –

Read more: Rappler

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18 August 2019, Sunday News

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