HomeAsiaUyghur propaganda chief confirmed dead 5 days after being released from jail

Uyghur propaganda chief confirmed dead 5 days after being released from jail

A former Uyghur propaganda chief who was jailed on separatism charges despite being a spokesman for Beijing has died at the age of 57, according to a prefectural official and an activist who runs a nonprofit human rights group.

Ilham Rozi was arrested in 2019 and sentenced to 15 years in prison for inviting prominent Uighurs to give lectures in the early 2010s. She died on March 7, just five days after being released from jail, Abduweli Ayup said. , founder of the Norway-based Uyghur Hjelp, or Uyghuryar, which maintains a database of Uighurs detained in Xinjiang.

Many of the academics Rozi asked to give lectures were sentenced after 2017, the year Chinese authorities began detaining Uyghurs in “re-education” camps under the guise of providing vocational training to prevent the largely Muslim minority from turning to religious extremism and terrorism. .

Ayup, who obtained information about Rozi through various channels, told the officers of the Igerchi Police StreetIn the city of Aksu, Rozi was released from a prison operating under the auspices of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Company, a state-owned economic and paramilitary organization, also known as Bingtuan, where he was serving his sentence.

The officers placed Rozi, who was seriously ill, in a nursing home for the elderly, Ayup said.

“We got new information that the police took Ilham Rozi out of prison and transferred him to the nursing home in Aksu city, which was, in fact, a new prison,” Ayup told Radio Free Asia. “It’s where he died.”

educator and broadcaster

Rozi was born in Shayar county and graduated from the Kashgar Teachers College literature department in 1988, according to Ayup. After graduating, she became known for her social activism and public speaking skills.

Rozi became the principal of Shayar High School, the head of the Shayar Education Office, and the director of the Aksu Prefectural Education Office. He was recognized as “the best public speaker” in the entire Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in 2010 and was promoted to deputy head of the prefectural Propaganda Department.

Rozi not only did China’s propaganda work, but also educated the public on Uyghur ideology and culture.

Authorities arrested Rozi and sentenced him to a long prison term after he invited writer Yalqun Rozi and poet Abduqadir Jalalidin to lecture several times at Shajar schools in 2012 and 2013, Ayup said.

Rozi’s sons filed a petition with the regional high court, complaining that their father carried out propaganda work for the Chinese Communist Party and was not responsible for the conferences he organized.

But the court rejected the petition, said the head of the Aksu Prefectural Communist Party Committee Petition Office, who is also a member of the prefectural Political and Legal Committee.

Confirmation but few details.

When RFA contacted the head of the Petitions Office, he first said that he was not aware of Rozi’s situation, but later mentioned that he knew about Rozi’s death. The chief refused to reveal the cause of death.

“(T)here are some concrete things that we can talk about, and some that we can’t,” he said. “We have an order from our superiors that if some random people ask us random questions, we should not answer them.”

According to information previously obtained by Uyghur Hjelp, Rozi was arrested with his son, Behtiyar Ilham, in 2019. Ilham was “re-educated” for two years and released.

“After Ilham Rozi’s arrest, we continually paid attention to his case,” Ayup said.

The information also indicated that Rozi was in good health prior to her arrest.

When RFA contacted the Igerchi police station, an officer there confirmed that the police had taken Rozi to a nursing home, where she died five days later.

“He was unable to meet with his relatives and we did not inform his family about his transfer,” the police officer said.

Translated by RFA Uyghur. Edited by Roseanne Gerin and Malcolm Foster.

Source link

- Advertisment -