China mounts publicity campaign to counter criticism on Xinjiang

Source: Reuters

By Ben BlanchardTom Miles

BEIJING/GENEVA (Reuters) – China is mounting an increasingly sophisticated counterattack to criticism of its policies in the restive, heavily Muslim region of Xinjiang, courting foreign media and running opinion pieces abroad as it seeks to spin a more positive message.

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FILE PHOTO: A Uighur man looks on as a truck carrying paramilitary policemen travel along a street during an anti-terrorism oath-taking rally in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, China May 23, 2014. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

Beijing has faced an outcry from activists, scholars, foreign governments and U.N. rights experts over mass detentions and strict surveillance of the mostly Muslim Uighur minority and other Muslim groups who call Xinjiang home.

The United States is even looking at sanctions on senior Chinese officials and companies linked to allegations of human rights abuses there, which would further ratchet up tension amid their blistering trade war.

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