Uighur democracy activist Wu’er Kaixi (吾爾開希) yesterday condemned China for its crackdown on Uighur demonstrators, which Beijing said left more than 140 people dead.
Wu’er Kaixi, a Uighur who lives in Taiwan, said he was shocked by the death toll, adding that it showed that “China’s crackdown had been severe.”
“The bloody conflict took place during the confrontation between the police and the protesters. In other words, the demonstration had been peaceful before the Chinese government dispatched police officers to where the Uighurs had gathered,” Wu’er Kaixi said.
“There is no way China can blame the conflict on the demonstrators again,” he said.
Wu’er Kaixi said the death toll reported by the Chinese authorities had already reached 129, but warned that numbers given by Beijing were unreliable.
Lizih (栗智), deputy director of the World Uighur Congress, said the conflict on Sunday night had left 140 people dead and 828 people injured.
Wu’er Kaixi said China could be trying to intimidate Uighurs and the rest of the world by publicizing the death toll, adding that the actual number was probably much higher than official reports said. The crackdown was no different from the crackdown at Tiananmen Square two decades ago, he said.
Wu’er Kaixi said the conflict was a result of ethnic conflict between Uighurs and Han Chinese, adding that China’s attempt to label Uighurs as “terrorists” and their demonstrations as “terrorist attacks” would not help resolve the ethnic conflict.
Days after it was banned in China, a Mandarin ballad satirizing nationalistic Chinese Internet users is trending at No. 1 on YouTube in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Fragile (玻璃心), by Taiwan-based Malaysian rapper Namewee (黃明志) and Australian singer Kimberley Chen (陳芳語), offers a tongue-in-cheek apology to “little pink” Internet users, a disparaging term that describes patriotic “keyboard warriors” from China. After racking up more than 9 million views on YouTube, the song reached No. 3 on the site in Malaysia on Thursday, according to Kworb, a Web site that analyzes music data from around the world. It is also the only Chinese-language
NO CHANGE: US officials indicated that the ‘one China’ policy remains in place, while the NATO chief avoided discussing Biden’s comment in an effort to ease tensions US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said on Friday that the Pentagon would continue to support Taiwan’s military, but he declined to say if US troops would defend the island against China, after US President Joe Biden said there was a US “commitment” to do so. “As we’ve done over multiple administrations, we will continue to help Taiwan with the sorts of capabilities that it needs to defend itself,” Austin said at NATO headquarters. “So we’ll stay focused on those things, and I won’t engage in any hypotheticals with respect to Taiwan,” he told reporters. Biden on Thursday sparked a new firestorm
PROTECTION: The Ministry of Health and Welfare is aiming for a full vaccination rate of 30 percent, and allowing mixed first and second doses to boost coverage rates Whether Taiwan reopens its borders would depend on the nation’s vaccination coverage rate and the COVID-19 situation in other countries, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Shih Chung-liang (石崇良) said yesterday. The Ministry of Health and Welfare is aiming for a 70 percent first-dose vaccination coverage and 30 percent two-dose coverage as part of its consideration, Shih told a media briefing following the weekly Cabinet meeting. In spite of a relatively stable COVID-19 situation in Taiwan, and calls from foreign missions and businesses in the country to allow more international travelers, the government is maintaining strict border control measures. Since March last year,
SCENIC TRAIN TOURS: TRA Director-General Du Wei said experts on aesthetics and railway culture have worked for 10 months to restore the blue locomotive Breezy Blue, the Taiwan Railways Administration’s (TRA) tourism train, is to be launched on the South Link Line on Saturday. The railway operator spent about 10 months restoring the blue diesel-powered train, which first provided service to students and commuters before being outsourced to Lion Travel, which organizes railway tour packages. TRA Director-General Du Wei (杜微) told reporters on the sidelines of a ceremony in Pingtung County’s Fangliao Township (枋寮) that the agency hopes that the restored Breezy Blue would provide an authentic experience to railway fans as well as those with fond memories of riding the blue trains to work or