Speaker Pelosi issued the following statement today on the violence in Xinjiang Province of China:
Recent reports about the deaths and violence in Xinjiang Province of China are deeply disturbing. The acts of violence and attempts to further exacerbate ethnic tensions on all sides must be rejected. The Chinese government should take the necessary steps to ensure that the right to peaceful expression is protected and to allow journalists, observers, and organizations to report on developments without restrictions.
Harsh policies by Chinese authorities in the region has caused increased tension and resentment among the Uighur people. The most recent U.S. State Department Country Report on Human Rights states that during the last year, Chinese authorities 'increased repression in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR), and targeted the region’s ethnic Uighur population.'
It is long past time for Chinese leaders to pursue activities that further dialogue and understanding with the Uighur people and respect minority rights as guaranteed under Chinese law.