BEIJING The capital of China’s Xinjiang region, home to the mostly Muslim Uighur minority, has launched a campaign against halal products to stop Islam penetrating secular life and increasing “extremism”.
Communist Party leaders in Urumqi led cadres to swear an oath to “fight a decisive battle against ‘pan-halalisation'” in a meeting on Monday, according to a notice posted on the city’s official WeChat account.
Everyday halal products, such as food and toothpaste, must be produced according to Islamic law.
China has been subject to heavy criticism from rights groups and foreign governments amid reports of a punitive crackdown that has seen the detention of as many as one million mostly Muslim ethnic Uighurs in Xinjiang.
Beijing has denied it is systematically violating the rights of Xinjiang’s Muslims, saying it is only cracking down on extremism and “splittism” in the region.
The official Global Times said on Wednesday the “demand that things be halal which cannot really be halal” was heightening hostility towards religion and allowing Islam to penetrate secular life.
As part of the anti-halal campaign, Ilshat Osman, Urumqi’s ethnically Uighur head prosecutor, penned an essay titled: “Friend, you do not need to find a halal restaurant especially for me.”
Be Part of Quality Journalism
Quality journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce and despite all the hardships we still do it. Our reporters and editors are working overtime in Kashmir and beyond to cover what you care about, break big stories, and expose injustices that can change lives. Today more people are reading Kashmir Observer than ever, but only a handful are paying while advertising revenues are falling fast.