Press Release – For Immediate Release
5 April 2023
+1 202 599 2244, Ext: 1
Uyghurs and Kazakhs gathered in Almaty, Kazakhstan, to commemorate the outbreak of the East Turkistan Uprising in Baren in 1990. The East Turkistan National Movement (ETNM) organized the event as an Iftar Dinner for East Turkistan, which drew nearly 200 members of Almaty’s Uyghur and Kazakh communities.
In addition to remembering the 1990 East Turkistan Uprising, also known as the Baren Revolution, attendees emphasized China’s ongoing genocide against Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and other Turkic peoples in East Turkistan and prayed for the country’s and its people’s liberation.
Zeydin Yusup led protests against China’s genocidal colonial policies in Baren township on April 5, 1990, which were violently suppressed by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army. As a result, many East Turkistanis took up arms and fought against Chinese military forces in order to reclaim East Turkistan’s independence. Thousands of unarmed Uyghurs and other Turkic people were massacred over several days, and over 7,600 East Turkistanis were arrested, many of whom were tortured, sentenced to long prison terms, or executed.
“The Baren Massacre, which occurred in the aftermath of the East Turkistan National Uprising in 1990, was one of many massacres that the East Turkistani people have endured over the last three decades,” said Raikhana Mukhlis, ETNM’s Region Director for Central Asia. “Unfortunately, it culminated in the ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity perpetrated against Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, and other Turkic peoples,” she continued.
Numerous Kazakh and Uyghur Almaty community members delivered speeches about the history of East Turkistan, the Baren Revolution, China’s ongoing genocide, and the need for the Central Asian Uyghur and Kazakh communities to awaken and support their brothers and sisters in Occupied East Turkistan.
“The Uyghur people in Central Asia must wake up; we must actively work to help our brothers and sisters in East Turkistan and actually change our situation,” said Mr. Azat Tikin, an Almaty-based Uyghur elder.
Other speakers emphasized the significance of the East Turkistan National Movement and its efforts to fight for East Turkistan’s and its people’s rights.
“We should support the East Turkistan National Movement because it is the only organization fighting for our country and people’s independence,” said Mr. Otkur M., a Uyghur man from Almaty who spoke at the Iftar dinner event.
Other speakers read poems and emphasized the importance of Uyghurs living free and independent of China as the only way to end the ongoing genocide.
“If we want to exist as a nation, the Uyghurs must fight for their freedom and independence because we can no longer survive under Chinese rule and oppression,” said Mr. Adiy Mukhlis, the brother of the late East Turkistan independence leader Yusupbek Mukhlis.