Press Releases

CAIR, Free Uyghur Now Join 70+ Groups in Calling on Moroccan, Saudi Governments Not to Deport Uyghurs to China 

Coalition asks Secretary of State Antony Blinken to put pressure on Moroccan and Saudi governments not to deport journalists, scholars 

(WASHINGTON D.C., 1/14/2022) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, and Free Uyghur Now, the largest

international youth-led grassroots movement advocating for the Uyghurs today joined more than 70 Uyghur, interfaith and human rights organizations in sending letters to the Moroccan government not to deport Uyghur journalist Idris Hasan and the Saudi government not to deport Uyghur religious scholar Hemdullah Abduweli and Nurmemet Rozi to China.  

CAIR and its coalition partners also sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken calling on the State Department to put pressure on the Moroccan and Saudi governments not to deport the men and to offer asylum to them in the United States.  

Idris Hasan, a Uyghur journalist, fled to Morocco from Turkey in July 2021 after seeing his name on a publicly disclosed Turkish government document about Uyghurs in Turkey wanted by the Chinese government. Shortly after landing in Casablanca, Hasan was detained on the basis of an Interpol red notice.  

Interpol has since canceled the red notice issued in Hasan’s case, citing its bylaws forbidding persecution on political, religious or ethnic grounds. He is currently at risk of being deported to China, where his is may be subjected to imprisonment, torture and death.  

Hemdullah Abduweli, and Uyghur Muslim religious scholar, and his friend Nurmemet Rozi went to Saudi Arabia to perform the hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In November 2021, the two men were detained by the Saudi government. They are also at risk of deportation to China, where they may be subjected to imprisonment, torture and death.  

SEE: Morocco: Detained Uyghur must not be transferred to China 

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2021/09/morocco-detained-uyghur-must-not-be-transferred-to-china/

Uyghur Man’s Long Journey to Freedom May End With Return to China 

https://www.voanews.com/a/uyghur-man-s-long-journey-to-freedom-may-end-with-return-to-china/6395787.html

Uighur scholar could be deported from Saudi Arabia ‘within days’, says family 

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/saudi-arabia-china-uighur-scholar-deported-within-days

HRW calls on Saudi Arabia to reveal status of detained Uighurs 

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/hrw-calls-saudi-arabia-reveal-status-detained-uighurs

CAIR and its partners’ letter to King Mohammed VI of Morocco and Moroccan Ambassador to the United States Princess Lalla Joumala Alaoui reads in part: 

“We write to His Majesty and Her Highness in regard to Idris Hasan, an Uyghur Muslim journalist fleeing persecution from China. It has come to our attention that the Kingdom of Morocco plans to extradite Mr. Hasan back to China where he faces a substantial likelihood of being imprisoned, tortured, and even killed by the Chinese government. Mr. Hasan’s only crime is being Muslim and pursuing religious freedom.  

READ THE FULL LETTER  

CAIR and its partners’ letter to Saudi Ambassador to the United States Princess Reema bint Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud reads in part: 

“Due to their devotion to the Islamic faith and their Uyghur identity, Mr. Abduweli and Mr. Rozi are in grave danger should they be deported to China. They are likely to face to detention and torture at the hands of the Chinese government, and may even be killed. Neither Mr. Abduweli nor Mr. Rozi have been charged with a crime in China or in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.  

READ THE FULL LETTER 

CAIR and its partners’ letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken reads in part: 

“Without the State Department’s intervention, these individuals are almost certain to face imprisonment, torture and possibly death if deported back to China. Therefore, we ask the State Department to intervene and exert its influence with the Moroccan and Saudi governments to cease the extradition of Mr. Hasan, Mr. Abduweli and Mr. Rozi. We additionally urge you to welcome them as asylum seekers in the United States.  

“We pray that the Biden administration continues its dedication to human rights and freedom by granting Idris Hasan, Hemdullah Abduweli and Nurmemet Rozi a safe haven from a government that commits genocide and blatantly extends the persecution to the Uyghur diaspora.” 

READ THE FULL LETTER 

In a statement, CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw said: 

“The Chinese government is targeting Uyghur Muslims and other Turkic ethnic minorities with a campaign of genocide. Millions of Uyghurs have been detained in concentration camps in which beatings, torture and rape are the norm. Millions more are being used as slave labor by on plantations and in Chinese factories.  

“To send Hemdullah Abduweli, Nurmemet Rozi and Idris Hasan into the hands of the government responsible for these atrocities would more than likely mean sending them to a concentration camp or worse.  

“We call on the Saudi and Moroccan governments not to deport their fellow Muslims, and we call on Secretary Blinken to use the State Department’s influence with the Saudi and Moroccan governments to stop the extraditions, and to offer asylum to Hemdullah Abduweli, Nurmemet Rozi and Idris Hasan.” 

Free Uyghur Now President Mosaab Sadeia said: 

“Today we are calling on the Moroccan and Saudi authorities to halt the deportation of Hemdullah Abduweli, Nurmemet Rozi and Idris Hasan. It is incumbent on Muslim nations to protect life and uphold justice. China has shown no intention of justice towards the Uyghurs, and the deportations will surely mean harm.” 

Free Uyghur Now Board Member Aydin Anwar said: 

“Extraditing any Uyghur to the hands of the Chinese authorities in this day and age means torture and death in China’s concentration camps. Morocco and Saudi Arabia would be sending their Muslim brothers to their deaths by complying with China’s pressure, further making them complicit in China’s genocide of East Turkistanis. The hypocrisy of these Muslim nations would be even more apparent if they continue with these extradition plans.”  

Earlier this month, CAIR called on Elon Musk to close a recently-opened Tesla showroom in China’s Xinjiang region, epicenter of the Uyghur genocide. 

SEE: CAIR Calls on Elon Musk to Close Tesla Showroom in China’s Xinjiang Region, Epicenter of Uyghur Genocide 

In December, CAIR welcomed President Biden’s signing of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (S.65/H.R.1155) into law. CAIR also welcomed new sanctions by the Biden administration on several Chinese government entities and corporations over abuses they committed against Uyghur Muslims and other minorities.  

SEE: BREAKING: CAIR Welcomes President Biden’s Signing of Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act Into Law   

CAIR Welcomes New Biden Administration Sanctions on Chinese Govt. Entities, Companies Over Abuses in Uyghur Region 

Earlier in 2021, CAIR and its #BoycottHilton coalition partners called on the Departments of State and Commerce to investigate the Hilton Corporation for its complicity in the Uyghur genocide.  

SEE: #BoycottHilton Coalition Asks Secs. Antony Blinken, Gina Raimondo to Probe Hilton Worldwide, Chinese Partner for Complicity in Uyghur Genocide 

SIGN THE PETITION TO BOYCOTT HILTON: change.org/BoycottHilton 

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.            

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.           

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END 

CONTACT: CAIR National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell, 404-285-9530, e-Mitchell@cair.com; CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ismail Allison, 202-770-6280, iallison@cair.com  

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