Chinese Uyghurs forced to welcome Communist Party into their homesMay 14, 2018
More than a million Chinese Communist officials are being dispatched to live with local families in the western region of Xinjiang, a move seen as a sign of the government’s increasingly tightened grip over the area’s predominantly Uyghur Muslim population.
The so-called “home stays,” announced by the government, target farmer households in southern Xinjiang, where the authorities have been waging an unrelenting campaign against what they call the forces of “terrorism, separatism and religious extremism.”
Government statements and state media reports show that families are required to provide detailed information during the visits on their personal lives and political views. They are also subject to “political education” from the live-in officials– whose stays are mandated to be at least one week per month in some locations.”
“The “home stay” program, evolved from a government attempt that began in 2014 to have officials regularly visit and monitor people in Xinjiang, has greatly expanded since, involving 110,000 officials just two years ago to more than a million now, according to government figures.
State media reports these officials, most of whom belong to China’s predominantly Han ethnic group, teach minority families to speak Mandarin, sing the national anthem and organize weekly national flag-raising ceremonies – activities similar to what activists say are mandated for thousands of Uyghur Muslims arbitrarily detained in political education camps across Xinjiang.