US to stop exports from Xinjiang citing China's human rights abuses
Washington/UNI: US will take steps to block some exports from China's Xinjiang region, over the country's alleged human rights abuses directed mostly against the Muslim Uighur minority of the region.
A statement by officials on Tuesday said "forced labour" was used to make the products, including at a "vocational" centre which it termed a "concentration camp".
The export ban targets five entities shipping clothing and other cotton goods, as well as computer parts and hair products to the US, says a BBC report.
However, it stops well short of a wider regional ban.
"These extraordinary human rights violations demand an extraordinary response," Kenneth Cuccinelli, the Department of Homeland Security's acting secretary said, adding "This is modern-day slavery".
This is the latest move by the Trump administration to put pressure on China over the situation in Xinjiang.
Reports say that Beijing has detained more than one million people from Xinjiang in recent years, citing security risks. Thousands of children have been separated from their parents and women have been forcibly subjected to methods of birth control.
China maintains that the people interned at these sites are given job training and education which it is necessary to keep them away from terrorism and counter the secessionist forces in the region.
Monday's orders "send a clear message to the international community that we will not tolerate the illicit, inhumane, and exploitative practices of forced labour in US supply chains," Mark A Morgan, acting commissioner of US Customers and Border Protection agency, said.