French Macron urges UN mission to visit China’s Xinjiang region

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FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron, wearing a protective mask, greets Slovenian President Borut Pahor (not seen) before a meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, September 21, 2020. REUTERS / Gonzalo Fuentes

PARIS (Reuters) – The French president on Tuesday called for an international mission under the auspices of the United Nations to visit Xinjiang in China due to concerns over the Uyghur Muslim minority.

UN experts and activists say at least one million Uyghurs and other Muslims are being held in detention centers in Xinjiang. China describes them as training centers that help eradicate terrorism and extremism and give people new skills.

“Fundamental rights are not a Western idea that could be opposed as interference … they are the principles of our organization, enshrined in texts that the Member States of the United Nations have freely consented to sign and to respect”, Emmanuel Macron said in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly.

“This is the reason why … France has requested that an international mission under the aegis of the United Nations go to Xinjiang in order to take into account the concerns we collectively have on the situation of the Uyghur Muslim minority”, did he declare. .

Reporting by John Irish and Michel Rose; Edited by Alison Williams

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