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China Rejects Accusations of Abuses    04/20 06:06


   BEIJING (AP) -- China's government on Tuesday rejected accusations of abuses 
in the Xinjiang region after a human rights group appealed for a U.N. 
investigation into possible crimes against humanity.

   Accusations of forced labor or detentions in the northwestern region are 
"lies and false information concocted by anti-China forces," said a foreign 
ministry spokesman, Wang Wenbin. He accused critics of trying to "undermine 
Xinjiang's stability and security and curb China's development."

   On Monday, Human Rights Watch appealed to the U.N. Human Rights Commission 
to investigate reports of mass detention of Muslims, a crackdown on religious 
practices and other measures against minorities. It said they amount to crimes 
against humanity as defined by the treaty that established the International 
Criminal Court.

   More than 1 million people have been confined to camps in Xinjiang, 
according to foreign governments and researchers. Authorities there are accused 
of imposing forced labor and birth controls.

   Beijing rejects complaints of abuses and says the camps are for job training 
to support economic development and combat Islamic radicalism. The government 
is pressing foreign clothing and shoe brands to reverse decisions to stop using 
cotton from Xinjiang due to reports of possible forced labor.

   Wang accused news outlets of acting as a "loudspeaker of lies and 

   China has denied the United Nations unfettered access to the region to 

   Wang called on foreign observers to "respect facts and truth" and to "stop 
the wrong practice of spreading disinformation about Xinjiang and making false 
statements at every turn."

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