Uyghurs sold as ‘cannon fodder’ for extremist groups: China

(From Reuters)

Uyghurs from China’s Xinjiang are being given Turkish identity papers in Southeast Asia by Turkish diplomats and then taken to Turkey where some are sold to fight for groups like Islamic State as “cannon fodder”, a senior Chinese official said.

Uighurs from Xinjiang are being taken to Turkey where some are sold to fight for extremist groups

Uyghurs from Xinjiang are being given identity papers in Southeast Asia by Turkist diplomats and taken to Turkey

Beijing says the Turkic language-speaking Uyghur minority are firstly Chinese nationals, and those who flee China should be returned to their home region in the far west of the country bordering central Asia.

“Turkish embassies in Southeast Asia will give them proof of identity,” Tong Bishan, division chief of the Ministry of Public Security’s Criminal Investigation Department, told a small group of foreign reporters in Beijing on Saturday.

“They are obviously Chinese but they will give them identities as Turkish nationals.”

The accusation is likely to further anger Ankara, already alarmed by the return of more than 100 Uyghurs to China from Thailand this week.

Some Turks see themselves as sharing a common cultural and religious heritage with their Uyghur “brothers”.

Hundreds, possibly thousands, of Uyghurs keen to escape unrest in China’s western Xinjiang region, have traveled clandestinely via Southeast Asia to Turkey. China is home to about 20 million Muslims spread across its vast territory, only a portion of whom are Uyghurs

Tong said that hundreds of Uyghurs had been given documents by Turkish diplomats, especially in Kuala Lumpur, and then allowed into Turkey.

Neither the Turkish Foreign Ministry nor the Turkish embassy in Kuala Lumpur were able to immediately provide comment.


But upon arriving, Uyghurs have no chance of finding legal work and some end up with extremist groups, Tong said, like the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which Beijing accuses of waging an insurrection campaign in Xinjiang to set up their own state.

“They are very easily controlled by certain local forces, especially the East Turkestan Islamic Movement and other terrorist groups. They organize the youths, they brainwash them, and get them to the front line to fight. They are cannon fodder,” Tong said.

“There is competition for them. Some are sent to Iraq, some to Syria. The terrorist groups there lack people. They will snatch people away. The terrorist groups will pay, at least $2,000 a person. It’s their way of recruiting soldiers.”

Tong, who has been helping lead the Chinese effort to get Uyghurs in Southeast Asia back to China, said he did not know how many Uyghurs were now fighting for Islamic State.

But he said that they have found propaganda videos and messages on the mobile phones and computers of some of those who have been returned, including pictures of dead fighters and promises of the joys to come in the afterlife.

“We are providing education and support, to tell them what real Islam is about. They’ve been listening to and watching stuff on the Internet, from irregular imams.”


Numerous groups have been sent back to China this year from Southeast Asia, Tong said, including the 109 repatriated from Thailand this week. He did not have a full figure for the numbers deported.

The deportations have sparked sometimes violent protests in Turkey, home to a large Uyghur diaspora.

The United States and United Nations have condemned the deportations and asked Thailand to stop them, saying the Uyghurs could face harsh treatment in China.

Beijing denies the accusations of human rights groups that it restricts the Uyghurs’ religious freedoms. It blames Islamist militants for a rise in violent attacks in Xinjiang in the past three years in which hundreds have died.

Tong said that concern the Uyghurs would be mistreated upon their return was simply an attempt to “demonize” China, and said they were being well looked after, though those suspected of crimes will be prosecuted.


The Bangkok-based newspaper The Nation, quoting a Thai Foreign Ministry release, reported on Friday that the Chinese government has invited Thai government officials to visit China to observe its treatment of the Uyghur migrants sent back to the country in an attempt to quash rumours that they were severely punished or killed.

The National Security Council of Thailand would consider inviting representatives of international organisations such as International Committee of the Red Cross to travel to China with the government officials.

The Thai ministry’s statement said that the Chinese government had reassured the Thai government that it would treat those people with fairness and guarantee their safety.

Moreover, care would be taken of those found not guilty and they would be returned to society. They would also be provided with farmlands, the Chinese government said.


Categories: Top News


  • Bobserver

    They are not Turkish citizens and the Turks are being duplicitous by issuing them with travel documents. Returning these Uyghurs to China is the right thing to do. The fate that awaits them in China is re-education as opposed to being blown up wearing a suicide vest, droned by the USA, etc while in ISIL.

  • originalone

    $2,000.00 a head? Getting the papers from-to Turkey, being sold-brainwashed to fight for IS as cannon fodder. And here we thought Turkey was a good guy, NATO member, etc. No wonder the EU doesn’t want Turkey or their citizens in Europe. This is not to say that all Turks are unworthy, but it does say something about the leadership there.

  • Daniel Berg

    Quiet the contrary EU wants Turkey to do its (EU) dirty work, EU wants to have Turkey close to Europe but NOT very close , EU does not want Turkey to get (very) close to Asia.

  • Ivan

    It is common knowledge that the present Turkish government is at the forefront of an international “coalition force” to oust the Asad government of Syria. What better “canon foddeer” alternatives can there be to these Uigurs from China? These Uigurs are as useful as the Chechens from the Caucuses for USA, EU, Saudi Arabia, Israel.

  • Fernando Martinez

    China is doing the right thing, the Uyghurs will simply be used to destabilize China.

  • Maria

    What is shocking is that the Turkish government is angry about accusations that IT KNOWS are true!! Talk about BALLS, huhh?

  • Maria

    So, let me get this straight, you are hoping that the Uyghurs commit acts of Terrorism on the Chinese people??…and, if 1.4 billion Chinese people don’t want terrorism in their country, THAT still doesn’t mean anything because some asshole named Fernando Martinez on the internet wants them to commit terrorism? is that right? Don’t the Chinese people deserve a country without terrorism, you fucking asshole? How about if YOU were the victim of Terrorism, since you approve of terrorism so much?? Don’t like your own medicine?

  • Maria

    Where have you been? Turkey has been supporting the overthrow of democratically-elected al-Assad from the very beginning, including letting the terrorists use its territory, but then shooting down Syrian helicopters hunting down the terrorists. British Newspaper reports that al-Assad was democratically-elected:

  • Fernando Martinez

    Wow, wow, wow…. Maria, Maria, Maria…..I’m sorry I caught on a day your having your rag/period or something. Your extremely mentally impaired if you inferred what you execreted from the very brief comment I posted.
    By the way that is “Mr. Asshole named Fernando Martinez”, to you young lady.
    The article we read, (I think we read the same thing)…..You obviously have an extremely low, almost non-existent degree of reading comprehension skills albeit, I might add….but I do digress……The article mentioned that the Chinese want the Uyghurs BACK on their territory since they are chinese nationals and are under the jurisdiction of Chinese law. The Turks have no right to provide them with documentation so they can serve as catspaw into their forays involving islamic terrorism. I agree with the Chinese government, send their people back where they can be watched, surveilled and curtailed from actually committing any destabilizing actions, ergo NO MORE terrorism………It’s is best that the Uyghurs stay in China since that way they will not come into contact with Chechens, Afghan-Taliban or extreme forms of islamism. I honestly believe that you and me are on the same side concerning this issue but you have mistakenly misread what I was trying to comunicate. Like the Chris Rock character said in that movie Rush Hour 1 when he fought and beat the character played by Zhang Ziyi….”We coulda had something, but you are one CRAAAAAAAAAAZY BITCH!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Maria

    YOU said, “China is doing the right thing, the Uyghurs will simply be used to destabilize China”…DESTABILIZE CHINA, so, your basis for calling it the “right thing” (bringing Uyghurs back) is that Uyghurs will “destabilize China” once China brings them back ( and if that’s not what you meant, you should have written the word *otherwise* after the comma (but, you DIDN’T, you see that, stupid?)…Maybe you made an honest mistake, due to your poor English skills and your stupidity & laziness towards improving your English …But if that’s not the reason for your idiotic post (which turned out to be supportive of terrorism, when read according to the conventions of the English language), then you really were casual about supporting terrorism. Be careful, it is a crime to give moral support to terrorists: you can end up in prison, and end up getting “passed around” by your sociopath cell-mates. But, as it stands, you gave moral support to terrorists, so, I am contacting the FBI on you, for giving moral support to terrorists, your lawyers & the FBI can sort it out to arrive at the truth (and if you go back & edit your comment, YOU would be tampering with evidence & obstructing justice – so, don’t do it, and in any case, I’ll just show the investigators my inbox of Discus replies)….lol, YOU will be the “Bitch” where YOU could be going, due to your inept & irresponsible use of English.

  • Fernando Martinez

    Crazy Mary is back!!! You read what you wanted read. Your twisted little brain churned my brief statement into something else. Your mind is like a Tim Burton movie!!!! haha……….
    I was in a rush and I typed out a quick comment, but for you to call a brother a str8 up A-hole? Come on don’t be like Shakira, loca, loca, loca……….FBI? ….. Anal rape jokes? …………Maria, quit while your ahead honey….your sheer vulgarity and potty mouth reaches new lows everytime your fingers touch a keyboard. You got a dirty a mouth baby (& a filthy brain,… .sucia……..I’m surprised we both haven’t been banned as of yet. Bye, you CrazyLoca…..a debate I can do….nasty, crazy, mindless, insane people like you? I pass….There’s no point in arguing with a crazy person. It’s like your life, probably not going anywhere…..Not with that attitude….I bet you understood my english just fine now? Get help Maria, you don’t have a problem, your suffering from a severe condition of mental handicap…Maybe it’s your pre-workout, too much starbucks…….I don’t know, I don’t wanna know! You escaped from some loonie bin and hopefully someone will read this and help you…………..Hasta luego amiga.

  • Maria

    1st of all, I’m American, and I’m not Hispanic. 2nd, YOUR inability to accurately express what you really meant in English is YOUR fault, not mine (your so stupid you accidentally supported the terrorists), PLEASE learn English grammar, for everyone’s’ sake.

  • Fernando Martinez

    Ay mi vida…………………………………………………………………………………………. Still offending people, I’m stoopid too….. hehe?
    What are you like 10 years old?
    Your funny, I think I’m begining to like you cuz of your spunk.
    Anyway……Hispanics…. are American too mi amor.
    Now if you say your NORTH American, that would make more sense.
    Or perhaps you could say I’m a “White non-hispanic”, buuuuuuuut since you seem to like to jump right into the gutter, just say “I’m a white girl”.
    To avoid having you write me anymore……I will add that maybe your an Africana Americana, who knooooows.
    Whatever, Hispanic, American, white, black…..It don’t matter none, CUZ YOUR A CRAZY WOMAN!!!!!!!!
    I’ll be going to youtube for a grammar lesson, so I no longer anymore accidentally support ter’rists……thank you Maria, GRACIAS.
    You’ve saved me from the FBI……..Dios mio, bless this woman for her charity.
    I will now call you, Santa Maria.
    Good BYE…….

  • Maria

    “China is doing the right thing, the Uyghurs will simply be used to destabilize China”, you SHOULD have written the word *otherwise* immediately after the comma. None of your stupid ramblings change that grammatical fact.

  • Fernando Martinez