US bans imports of certain clothes, cotton, and computer parts from Xinjiang in China, citing human rights abuses against Uighur Muslims

FILE PHOTO: People hold signs protesting China's treatment of the Uighur people, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, May 8, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson

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The US government has banned the import of certain clothing, computer parts and hair products from China’s Xinjiang region, where Beijing is committing human rights atrocities against millions of Muslim minorities.

The ban targets four companies and one manufacturing site producing apparel, hair products, computer parts, and cotton garments in Xinjiang and Anhui province. China produces around a fifth of the world’s cotton, with nearly 85% of its cotton coming from Xinjiang. The region is also a major source of textiles and petrochemicals.

Mark A. Morgan, acting commissioner of US Customs and Border Protection agency, said Monday that the executive orders on Monday “send a clear message to the international community that we will not tolerate the illicit, inhumane, and exploitative practices of forced labour in US supply chains.”

Morgan described China’s forced labor camps, where Uighur people and other Muslim populations live and work for little or no pay, as “atrocious human rights abuse that is completely against the values that we all share,” adding that the Trump administration will not allow foreign companies to use vulnerable people for forced labor whilst “harming American businesses that respect human rights and the rule of law.”

Kenneth Cuccinelli, acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, told reporters that “these extraordinary human rights violations demand an extraordinary response” and described China’s actions as “modern-day slavery.”

The Communist Chinese gov needs to close its concentration camps, set its captives free, & end its state-sponsored forced labor program immediately.

Until they do, DHS will continue to block these illicit goods and prosecute those who profit from them.

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— Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli (@HomelandKen) September 14, 2020

Human rights experts told Business Insider on Saturday that a potential ban on cotton imports from Xinjiang would increase pressure on the Chinese government to end abuses in the region, adding that it could impose “a real economic cost” for Beijing.

The import ban, which was first tipped by Bloomberg, is the most recent development by the US government to force China to end the oppression of Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region, where Beijing is detaining over one million people. 

SEE ALSO: Human rights groups urge Trump to ban Chinese cotton over Xinjiang forced labor camps. The implications of a ban ‘would be enormous’ in Beijing, one expert said.

SEE ALSO: US may ban cotton imports from China’s Xinjiang region, where Muslim minorities face human-rights atrocities

SEE ALSO: ‘Virtually the entire apparel industry’ — from Gap to H&M to Adidas — is profiting from forced Uighur labor, activists say

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Source:: Business Insider


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