On Thursday, November 3, 2022, Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu met with a Chinese delegation headed by Du Hangwei, the Vice Minister of China’s Public Security Ministry.
According to the Turkish news site Ulusal, the Chinese delegation accompanying Du Hangwei also included Chinese Ambassador to Anakara Liu Shaobin, First Deputy Director of the Xinjiang Autonomous Region Public Security Department Pan Xi, and Gao Fei, the Deputy Director General of the Anti-Terrorism Department of China’s Ministry of Public Security.
Turkiye’s Deputy Minister of Interior İsmail Çataklı and Deputy General Secretaries of Security Ahmet Şengün and Resul Holoğlu, Director General of Combating Irregular Migration and Deportation Affairs of the Directorate of Migration Management Ramazan Seçil and Head of EU and Foreign Relations Department Sezer Işıktaş joined Interior Minister Soylu in the meeting with the Chinese delegation.
The sudden visit by the Chinese delegation to Ankara comes after Turkiye had signed onto a joint statement at the United Nations earlier this week condemning China’s ongoing atrocities against Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples in Occupied East Turkistan.
“We call on the Turkish Government to refrain from engaging in any activities that might undermine or harm the safety, well-being, and progress of Uyghurs and other East Turkistanis,” said President Ghulam Yaghma of the East Turkistan Government in Exile. “We again plead with Turkey to refrain from sacrificing East Turkistan and the Uyghurs,” he added.
Uyghurs and other East Turkistanis in the global East Turkistani diaspora are fearful that Turkish authorities might deport Uyghurs and suppress East Turkistani activism in Turkiye, which is home to over 60,000 Uyghurs and other East Turkistani refugees.
“We ask the people of Turkiye, who are our ethnic kin, to protest the Turkish government’s harmful actions against Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples,” said Prime Minister Salih Hudayar of the East Turkistan Government in Exile. “We call on opposition parties in Turkey to not allow the Erdogan administration to sacrifice the oppressed people of East Turkistan to China,” he added.
Since 1997, the Turkish government has pursued a “Beijing first” policy, routinely suppressed East Turkistani activism, and even deported many Uyghurs to appease China. Under the administration of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Ankara has elevated its relationship with Beijing to ‘Strategic Cooperation,’ resulting in East Turkistanis losing hope in Turkish support for their plight.
The East Turkistan Government in Exile (ETGE) has long been calling on the Turkish Government and the Turkish Parliament to join western governments and parliaments in recognizing China’s ongoing atrocities against Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, and other Turkic peoples as genocide.
“Mr. Erdogan claims to be a “champion of the oppressed,” yet his administration has been extensively cooperating with the genocidal Chinese Communist regime,” said Dr. Mamtimin Ala, the Strategic Advisor of the East Turkistan Government in Exile. “By continuing to appease China, the Erdogan administration is not only selling his Turkic in East Turkistan but also the very morals and principles of the Turkish nation,” he added.