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The 13th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues
2020/09/03

Photo taken on August 29, 2020 shows the 13th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Urumqi,Xinjiang.(Xinjiang Daily/Zhou Peng)

On August 29, 2020, the Information Office of the People's Government of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region held a special press conference on population and family planning in Xinjiang.

Host of press conference: Deputy Head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Xinjiang Committee Xu Guixiang

Xu Guixiang: Dear friends from the press, good morning. Welcome to the 13th press conference on Xinjiang related issues.

The press conference invited the Spokesperson of the Information Office of the People's Government of XUAR Elijan Anayit, the Director of the Health Commission of XUAR Mutalip Rozi, the Inspector Grade I of the Bureau of Statistics of XUAR Tursunay Abudureyim, the Chairman of the Women's Federation of XUAR Aynur Mehsat.They will answer questions from you.

Reporter from Xinjiang Radio and Television Station

Q 1: Recently German scholar Adrian Zenz has published a report, titled "Sterilizations, IUDs and Mandatory Birth Control: The (Chinese Communist Party's) Campaign to suppress Uyghur's Birthrates in Xinjiang", noting that "Xinjiang is using forced sterilization and coercive family planning against Uyghurs and other minorities in Xinjiang in a attempt to limit their populations". What would you comment on this?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Tursunay Abudureyim.

A: German anti-China scholar Adrian Zenz has published so-called research report titled "Sterilizations, IUDs and Mandatory Birth Control: The Chinese Communist Party's Campaign to suppress Uyghur's Birthrates in Xinjiang", citing biased data and ill-intended cases, claiming that "Xinjiang's natural population growth has declined dramatically" and "Xinjiang has forceful sterilization problems". His findings are against academic research methodologies and the realities in Xinjiang.

As a matter of fact, Xinjiang's Uygur population has been increasing. During the law-based implementation of the family planning policy, all rights of ethnic minorities including those of Uygurs have been protected. According to data, during 2010-2018, Xinjiang's total population, ethnic minorities population, Uygur population increased steadily, whereas Han population registered just a meager increase. During 2010-2018, Xinjiang's permanent residents increased by 3.0518 million(13.99%) from 21.8158 million to 24.8676 million. Among that, ethnic minorities population increased by 2.8749 million (22.14%) from 12.9859 million to 15.8608 million; Uygur population was up 2.5469 million (25.04%)from 10.1715 million to 12.7184 million; Han population rose by 0.1769 million (2%) from 8.8299 million to 9.0068 million. Uygur's population growth rate was not only higher than Xinjiang's population growth rate, but also higher than that of ethnic minorities and even higher than Han's.

During 2010-2018, the birth rate and natural growth rate of Xinjiang's population were stable with a slight decline. During this period birth rates for Xinjiang's permanent residents population were 14.85‰,14.99‰,15.32‰, 15.84‰,16.44‰,15.60‰,15.34‰,15.88‰,10.69‰ respectively; natural growth rates were 10.71‰, 10.57‰,10.84‰,10.92‰,11.47‰,11.06‰,11.08‰,11.40‰,6.13‰ respectively. Before 2017, Xinjiang's population birth rate was around 15‰, natural growth rate around 11‰. Although there was a decline in Xinjiang's population birth rate and natural growth rate in 2018, compared to the national level, its birth rate(10.69‰)was almost the same with that of the national level (10.94‰), and natural growth rate (6.13‰) was higher than national level(3.81‰). Among them, Uygur's birth rate (11.9‰) was higher than Xinjiang's overall population birth rate (10.69‰), and higher than Han's birth rate (9.42‰). Growth and birth rate for Xinjiang's Uygur population was higher than that of Xinjiang's overall and Han population, therefore the so-called "racial cleansing" is simply nonsense.

As we all know, Adrian Zenz is a member of the far right Victims of Communist Memorial Foundation established by the US government in 1983, and a senior member in a research group set up with the masterminding of the US intelligence community to study Xinjiang's vocational education and training centers. He believes he is "led by God" "on a mission" against China. He is keen on making up lies on Xinjiang affairs and slandering China. His earlier reports and remarks have been proved fake. This time he repeatedly ignores the truths and facts on the patterns and realities of Xinjiang's population development, deliberately making up lies by saying "Xinjiang is suppress ethnic minorities' population growth". His purpose is to comply with his "American master", interfering with China's internal affairs, disturbing Xinjiang's development and order by promoting "human rights issues" via "Xinjiang's population related issues". I hope you all keep eyes open, and avoid being manipulated by this so-called "scholar on Xinjiang issues".

Reporter from Xinhua News Agency

Q 2: Could you explain the Family Planning Policy in Xinjiang?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Mutalip Rozi.

A: Implementation of China's Family Planning Policy was rolled out from China's central and eastern regions to border areas, from urban areas to rural areas next, form Hans to ethnic minorities, giving ethnic minorities differentiated yet loose policies as opposed to that on Hans. As a part of China, Xinjiang abides by the family planning policy according to law. China hasn't formulated and implemented no family planning policies for a single ethnic group.

From 1975,Family Planning Policy was implemented first in such predominantly Han-populated cities like Urumqi. "Provisional Regulations on Several Issues of Family Planning Policy" was published in 1981, starting the policy towards Han ethnic group. "Measures on Family Planning of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region" was published in 1992, giving ethnic minorities more loose policies compared to Hans, according to which urban Han couples could have one child whereas rural Han couples could have two; urban ethnic minorities can have two children whereas in those in rural areas can have three. In 2017, Xinjiang revised its population and family planning regulations, granting the same policy to all ethnic groups: urban couples can have two children, rural couples can have three. As can be seen, family planning policy was implemented towards ethnic minorities 17 years later than Hans, and still with more easiness compared to China's other provinces.

Reporter from China News Service

Q 3: According to the data on "Xinjiang Statistical Yearbook", Xinjiang's natural population growth rate declined in 2018. Could you explain the reason of it?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Tursunay Abudureyim.

A: The decline of Xinjiang's population growth in 2018 is the result of full implementation of Family Planning Policy, which also reflects Xinjiang's economic and social development and the changing patterns of people's reproduction attitude among all ethnic groups.

Before 2017, family planning policy was not implemented adequately in southern prefectures of Xinjiang, like Kashgar and Hotan, which resulted in having more children than the policy allowed. In recent years, during Xinjiang's poverty alleviation campaign, home visit and information soliciting from household to household have identified a large number of children born out of the policy and had them registered. Such population accounted for 20% of the population, including newborns, registered in that year, which is in line with the estimations of health and statistics authorities.

Birth rate and natural growth rate of Xinjiang's population were down from 15.88‰ and 11.40‰ in 2017 to 10.69‰ and 6.13‰ respectively in 2018.The number of newborn population in 2018 was 120,000 fewer than that of 2017. According to the estimation of health and statistics authorities, by fully implementing the family planning policy, around 80,000 fewer people were born. Meanwhile, as poverty alleviation campaign advances, living and production conditions have improved significantly in southern Xinjiang, urbanization process has been on the rise, urban population is increasing, people's education and cultural level has also improved a lot, which has changed their reproductive attitude and practice. Now more and more people favors late marriage and fewer and better births.

Reporter from China Global Television Network (CGTN)

Q4: What's the purpose of implementing Family Planning Policy in Xinjiang? What have we achieved?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Mutalip Rozi.

A: It is a national policy that along with other provinces Xinjiang implemented, and also an objective need for sustainable development coordinating population and economic, social, environmental resources. Xinjiang is an arid region with severe desertification problems. Xinjiang's average water yield per unit area is 48300 m ³ /㎞², which is only 16.7% of national level (29000m³/㎞²). Xinjiang has a territory of 1.6649 million ㎞², oasis accounts for only 0.1711 million ㎞². In southern part of Xinjiang, due to rapid increase of population, farming land has become a scarce resource. In 2018, farming land per capita in 4 prefectures of southern Xinjiang was 2.32 mu (1547m²), which is only 67.78% of world average (3.42 mu equals 2280m²).For some time in the past, suffered by "three evil forces", Family Planning Policy could not fully implemented in southern Xinjiang prefectures like Kashgar and Hotan; plus, many were born outside of state plan and without marriage, which led to a rapid rise of Xinjiang's population, inappropriate allocation of limited natural resources and huge burden to households. In order to resolve the problems of water, farming land allocation, let people of Xinjiang lead a better life, Xinjiang needed to implement Family Planning Policy, fostering balanced development of population and economy.

After implementing the family planning policy in Xinjiang, the pressure due to rapid rise of population was alleviated, and health conditions of people from various ethnic groups, particularly women and children, have improved. Xinjiang's maternal mortality rate was down from 43.41per 100,000 in 2010 to 26.65 per 100,000 in 2018; infant mortality declined from 26.58‰ to 14.02‰. Xinjiang's average life expectancy was 74.82 years in 2015.

World population development trend indicates that the higher socioeconomic development level is, the stronger self realization and better births conception will be, birth rate and population growth rate will be lower accordingly. With further development of Xinjiang, people's traveling, living, education, health, employment facilities have improved significantly, contributing stable rise in population quality. Xinjiang's birth rate, mortality, and population natural growth rate declined from 22.55‰,7.69‰ and 14.86‰ in 1978 to 10.69‰,4.56‰, 6.13‰ in 2018 respectively. Population growth in Xinjiang has entered a modern phase of "low birth rate, low mortality, low increase".

 

Photo taken on August 29, 2020 shows the 13th Press Conference on Xinjiang-related Issues in Urumqi,Xinjiang.(Xinjiang Daily/Zhou Peng)

Reporter from Xinjiang Station of China National Radio

Q5: Adrian Zenz's report noted that women like Zamira Dawut, Mihrigul Tursun, and Tursunay Zinavdin, who suffered "unlawful detention" were once forced to take compulsory sterilization by government. How do you think about that?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Elijan Anayit.

A: It's not a surprise for us that Adrian Zenz played tricks by inviting these "actresses" to patch up his lies. Friends from the press who have attended the news conferences on Xinjiang related issues would not be unfamiliar with these figures. According to our statistics, the "actresses" gave their "performances" in 80% of Xinjiang related hypes and obeyed the orders of the "backstage directors", making up new "lines" every time. Here's a question for Adrian Zenz, how much did you pay them this time?

These "actresses" can make scandals without bottom line, we'd love to tear up the disguise of their hypocrisy one more time.

The "actress" Zamira Dawut said that after her release from the education and training center, she was forced to be sterilized and her uterus removed because she gave birth to more than two children. As a matter of fact, Zamira Dawut had never studied in the education and training center, and her fifth brother Abduhelil Dawut had clarified that in a media interview. In March 2013, Zamira Dawut gave birth to the third child in Urumqi Maternal and Child Care Service Center and sighed a childbirth consent form voluntarily, firmly requesting "to have a caesarean section and tubal ligation", and then the Center conducted operation as she required. She was never sterilized, not to mention "uterus removal".

The "actress" Mihrigul Tursun claimed that she was forced to take unknown drugs which led to irregular bleeding and reduced menstrual cycle when she was in the education and training center, then she was confirmed being sterilized by America doctors. In fact, she was detained for inciting ethnic hatred and discrimination by the Public Security Bureau in Qiemo County on April 21, 2017. As Mihrigul Tursun had many infectious diseases including syphilis, the county PSB withdrew coercive measures toward her out of humanitarian considerations on May 10, 2017. Besides the 20 days of criminal detention, Mihrigul Tursun was totally free in China. She had never been sentenced and never studied in any education and training center, or been forced to take drugs against her will. Another investigation shows that there'd been no record confirming her receiving contraceptive operation, her parents said she has fertility. Mihrigul Tursun made up stories more than once. She lied that her young brother Akbar Tursun was abused to death in the education and training center. Akbar Tursun clarified after he heard what she said and noted that "Mihrigul Tursun is always telling lies, she lied about my death and other people's death ."

The "actress" Tursunay Zinavdin said that women detained in the education and training center had to either accept sterilization or take menstruation terminating pills. She also claimed that the tubal legation she was forced to have was conducted in irreversible way. The truth is she had never undergone contraception. The fact is Tursunay Zinavdin has had two marriages: The first one ended in divorce with her ex-husband Tursunjan Ahmetjan because of her infertility. She had no child with her present husband too. Her so called "bilogical daughter" is the daughter of her present husband's niece. Tursunay Zinavdin's kinsfolk also told us she was sterile.

We'd like to remind friends who care about Xinjiang, you may toss the reports that are related to those "actresses" into dustbin once you see them because those are fake news.

Reporter from Global Times

Q6: Adrian Zenz's report noted that local government officials in Xinjiang forced ethnic minority women to have contraceptive rings implantation, female legation or even induced abortion. Is that true?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Mutalip Rozi.

A: What Adrian Zenz mentioned in the report of "forcing ethnic minority women to have contraceptive rings implantation, female legation or even induced abortion" are scandalous remarks with malicious purpose. In Xinjiang, illegal medical practices like late pregnancy induced labor, compulsory birth control and forced pregnancy tests are banned. People of all ethnic groups are free to choose whether or not and how to practice contraception with any organization or individual may intervene.

In recent years, Xinjiang has taken measures in accordance with law to implement family planning policy by promoting management, scaling up publicity and advocacy, providing quality service and so on, which led to remarkable results. People make independent choices on safe, effective, and proper contraception practices. Women of childbearing age have voluntarily taken tubal ligation and IUD placement, especially most of those who had given birth to children but not taken birth control measures from 2014. Some areas like Hotan Prefecture have applied in the principal of people voluntary with technical guidance, encouraging people to choose long effective contraception measures that are suitable for themselves. Over a period of time, there are certain increasing cases of voluntary tubal ligation and IUD placement. Practice has proven that among all kinds of long effective contraception measures, tubal ligation and IUD placement are internationally acknowledged safe ways with the least side effects and the highest efficiency, which has been widely applied in many places domestically and achieved voluntary acceptance of childbearing age groups in Xinjiang.

Reporter from China Daily

Q7: Adrian Zenz's report noted that families with more than three kids of ethnic minority groups would be sent to education and training centers by force if they refuse to pay the fines, with previously revealed "Karakax Namelist" as evidence. Is this true?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Elijan Anayit.

A: It is prescribed by Population and Family Planning Law of People's Republic of China that "a citizen who bears children in violation of 'one-child' policy shall pay the social upbringing fees according to the law". Social upbringing fees are charged combining average annual disposable income of city and town residents with rural per capita net income as reference standard. When there's citizen who violates the regulation, related departments will lawfully make decisions on the fines based on the client's actual income level and his/her circumstances which are incompatible with the regulation in the law. If the client is dissatisfied with the decision, he/she can apply for administrative consideration according to law or bring up administrative review; The department that makes the decision can apply to court of enforcement regarding those who refuse to pay the social upbringing fines. As we can see, there are clear legal provisions and judicial procedures throughout the process of lawfully dealing with the situation of violating the family planning rules. The issue that Adrian Zenz noted as citizens "would be sent to education and training centers by force if they refuse to pay the fines" doesn't exist at all.

We've cracked down the rumor of "Moyu Namelist" in many occasions. Today, I'd like to reaffirm that the so called "Moyu Namelist" is fabricated by the internal and external collusion of East Turkistan gang. Adrian Zenz cooked up Karakax Namelist: An Analysis of China's Detention Movement in Xinjiang whereby he discredited that the 311 citizens on the list were in detention at education and training centers with reasons like violating the "family planning policy". Careful investigation revealed that most of the 311 people on the list are citizens living in Bostan Street in Moyu County, they are leading a normal life as other people do and they have never attended vocational education and training. Only a few of them were sent to education and training centers according to law for being influenced by extremism or committing minor crimes. It is ridiculous that Adrian Zenz reuses the debunked "name list" in a new fake "report", which shows he has exhausted his tricks.

Reporter from Tianshannet

Q8: Adrian Zenz's report noted that Xinjiang has investigated behaviors that violate the family planning policy by carrying out extensive physical examination, which is followed with punitive and mandatory birth control measures. What's your opinion on this issue?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Mutalip Rozi.

A: This is another extremely ridiculous lie. Since 2016, Xinjiang carried out the project of universal free physical examination, which was conducted by medical and sanitary organizations once in a year free of charge, aiming to improve health of people of all ethnic groups. According to the National Standards for Basic Public Health Service, the physical examination, covering people of all ages and in all localities, aims to carry out prevention and control over, research on and intervention in the top ten diseases in terms of incidence, including high blood pressure, fatty liver, anemia, diabetes, cholecystitis, gallstones, coronary heart disease, bronchitis, renal cyst and tuberculosis. So far, 4,839 physical examination centers have been set up in the region and 123,000 medics have been mobilized for this purpose, with a total investment of 5.324 billion yuan and 70.81 people having their health conditions checked. People of all ethnic groups have realized the benefits of this for-people health policy and are more than willing to have their health checked when it opens every year.

The national free health examination carried out in Xinjiang aims to help people of all ethnic groups to get early treatment in case they have any diseases. There is no such thing as using the health checkup to punish or force birth control measures on those who violate the family planning policy. Anyone who read the report concerning Xinjiang by Adrian Zenz would know that presumption and correlation were customary tactics of him. He likes to impose his anti- CPC political stand and ideological bias as first impressions on his readers. He is good at using his groundless imagination to create sources as proof of ridiculous conclusion. For example, he presumed and related the cameras in Xinjiang for social security and transportation administration as surveillance on ethnic minorities. The boarding school system and preschool education implemented to protect the education rights of the teenage and children in Xinjiang have been presumed by him as forcing family separations between students and parents. Again, this time, he presumed the national health checkups in Xinjiang as birth control measures. His dirty tricks have long been exposed by people with insight of the international community. Grayzone, an independent news website has published articles claiming that loopholes such as small sample data, short of fundamental basis and one-sided quotations existed in Adrian Zenz's report. For a person who makes irresponsible remarks, how can you trust his report? One can only disdain him.

Reporter from Xinjiang Daily

Q9: What have been done in the fields of protecting the rights of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang, especially women? What results have been achieved?

Xu Guixiang: This question goes to Aynur Mehsat.

A: Xinjiang upheld the Constitution of the People's Republic of China, Law of the People's Republic of China on Regional National Autonomy. Xinjiang fully implement the national ethnic policies. People of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang enjoy the same status. Their legitimate rights have been protected according to law. People of all ethnic groups united and strived for common prosperity and development.

It is protected by law that people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang participate as equals in administering state affairs. Internal affairs are administered independently. Chairpersons of the standing committee of the current regional people's congress, the heads of the autonomous region, and heads of the regional CPPCC were ethnic minorities. All the autonomous prefectures and all autonomous counties are citizens from the ethnic groups exercising regional autonomy in the areas concerned. Moreover, an overwhelming number of the heads of other prefectures, cities and counties are citizens of ethnic minority origins. There are many ethnic minorities working as party secretaries at different levels of party branches. There are many people of ethnic minority origins from Xinjiang holding leading posts in central and state organs. Ethnic minorities took up 64.2% at the 13th Regional People' Congress, and 46.7% at the 13th Regional CPPCC.

Xinjiang protect the religious freedom of people of all ethnic groups. It is out of people's free will to believe in or not to believe in any religion in Xinjiang. All normal religious activities, including attending religious services, fasting, and celebrating religious festivals, which believers conduct at places of worship or in their own homes in accordance with customary religious practices, are protected by law, and no organization or individual may infringe on these rights. Xinjiang continues to improve the conditions in the mosques, which is applauded by religious figures and believers. The Koran and Irshad al-Sari li Sharh Sahih al-Bukhari have been published in Chinese, Uygur, Kazak and Kirgiz languages. Believers' ways to get religious knowledge have been broadened. Xinjiang Islamic Institute and its eight branches have been established to nurture religious personnel.

The customs of ethnic minorities are respected. Xinjiang formulated regional regulations to supervise over the production and supply of halal food. The region also renders support to and guarantees the production and supply of special supplies to ethnic minorities. Ethnic minorities which have the tradition of inhumation( ground burial) are exempt from the government requirement for cremation, and are allotted special plots for cemeteries. Major festivals of the ethnic minorities are also made public holidays in Xinjiang. The customs of ethnic minorities such as wedding and funerals and circumcision are respected.

All ethnic groups are guaranteed the right to use and develop their own spoken and written languages. The extensive use of the spoken and written languages of ethnic minorities in such fields as education, justice, administration, and public affairs are guaranteed. For example, Uygur, Kazak, Kirgiz, Mongol, Xibo languages are used as teaching languages in primary and secondary schools. Multiple languages are used extensively in public fields such as business, medication and transportation. Government organs in handling public affairs and various other organizations in recruitment and promotion tests all use the languages of the ethnic groups exercising autonomy in a given area. Xinjiang People's Broadcasting Station now provides 12 radio channels in five languages - Uygur, Han Chinese, Kazak, Mongol and Kirgiz. Xinjiang TV provides 12 TV channels in four languages -Uygur, Han Chinese, Kazak, and Kirgiz. This great benefit people's work and daily lives.

Xinjiang has attached great importance to the preservation and protection of the best traditions of all ethnic groups. The Art of Xinjiang Uygur Muqam, and the Epic of Manas have been listed on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List and the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in need of urgent safeguarding. Among popular folk festivals are the Uygur's Meshrep, the Kazakh's Aytes, the Kirgiz's Kobuz Ballad Singing Fair, the Mongolian Nadam Fair, the Xibo's West Moving Festival and the Han people's Lantern Festival.

Xinjiang fully implements the Law on the Protection of Women's Rights. The protection of women's right is improving. Xinjiang implements the Anti-domestic Violence Law of the People's Republic of China and the Regulations of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on Preventing and Prohibiting Domestic Violence. The government has enacted guidelines on women's development, and its major indicators have been included in the regional social and economic development. Firstly, women's right to participation in the administration of public affairs are protected. Women's growth and progress are taken as important measures for the national basic policy of men and women are equal and strengthening the country through talents. At present, more and more women are participating in the administration of state affairs. By the end of 2018, the female leaders of the prefectural principal level reached 10.63%, of the county principal level reached 14.69%, of the township principal level reached 20.47%, and female leaders took up 27.4% of the village party branch and village committee. The cadre allocation rates of women in the regional party committee, people's congress, government and CPPCC reached 100%. Among the deputies and members of the 2018 regional people's congress and CPPCC, women took up 26.5% and 27.0% respectively. Secondly, women's right of labor has been protected by law. Women's employment has remain the priority of our work. Work hard to eliminate the gender discrimination, equal pay for equal work for both genders, and strengthen the protection for female workers. Policies and measures in favor of women's employment have been made. Operations such as the Spring Breeze Program have been carried out to improve women's employment, strengthen the skills training and enterprise training. From 2017 to 2018, women took up 47.62% of the regional new urban jobs. Thirdly, the protection of women's right to health is improving. The cervical and breast cancer have been incorporated into the regional medical security and assistance system for major diseases. The government has initiated the " Health Express for Mothers" and mobile operation vans to provide health services to 170000 women. The maternal and child health care service system has been continuously improved. Three levels of birth defect prevention and control system including premarital checkup, prenatal screening and newborns screening have been established. The government has been carrying out major public health care service programs such as free pre-pregnancy examination for healthy childbirth, supplementary taking of folic acid, screening for neonatal diseases in poor areas. Fourth, women's right to education has been protected. In the process of making, conducting and assessing regulations, policies and development plans concerning education, add gender perspective, and implement gender equality rules, forbid gender discrimination, thus to create a social environment for women to receive education. Continue to improve the ratios for women to receive higher and vocational education. To broaden ways to higher education and broaden the opportunities for women to receive education. Actively implement the Spring Bud Program, fully guarantee the female children's right of all ethnic groups to education in poor areas.

Practice has proved that, with the progress in the protection of women's rights and interests, the development environment for women has been improved continuously, their education level lifted and awareness of protecting their marital and property rights and interests strengthened. With people's lives continue to improve, more and more women are take part in the social and economic development in Xinjiang. They are truly holding up half of the sky.

Xu Guixiang: Thank you. Today's press conference concludes now. Thanks all the invitees and reporters.

 

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