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US Sanctions 3 More Chinese Firms Over Uyghur Slave Labor

Published: June 12, 2024
xinjiang-documentary-chinese-journalist-repression
A Chinese journalist known only by his pseudonym Guan Guan travelled to the region of Xinjiang and produced a documentary showing the concentration camp facilities there. (Image: Guan Guan/Screenshot/YouTube)

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has added three more mainland Chinese firms to an entity list that bars imports from firms allegedly involved with Uyghur slave labor in the western Chinese region of Xinjiang. 

The June 11 (Tuesday) notice from the DOH said the latest targets include shoe manufacturer Dongguan Oasis Shoes Co, electrolytic aluminum maker Xinjiang Shenhuo Coal and Electricity Co, and food processor Shandong Meijia Group Co..

“Through these actions, DHS is increasing its focus on seafood, aluminum, and shoes — sectors that play an important role in Xinjiang’s economy — and ensuring goods made with forced labor are kept out of the U.S. market,” the department said in a separate statement.

Scores of companies have been added to the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act Entity List, which restricts the import of goods tied to the widespread abuse of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang. 

Communist China has persecuted the Uyghurs, a Turkic, predominantly Muslim ethnicity numbering around 11 million in the country, since its establishment in 1949. 

While repression of the Uyghurs and their culture lessened somewhat after the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s and 1970s, recent decades have seen the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) impose extremely harsh restrictions on the ethnic group and other minorities. 

Human rights groups estimate that over 1 million Uyghurs are living in concentration camps, where they are subject to slave labor, physical abuse and rape, and forced organ harvesting. 

Beijing’s embassy in Washington, D.C. has previously called the U.S. entity list “an instrument of a few U.S. politicians to disrupt stability in Xinjiang and contain China’s development.”

Reuters contributed to this report.