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Uighur News: The best brands accused of using forced labor in China | World News

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SYDNEY: China is transferring tens of thousands of Uighur detainees from internment camps to factories that supply some of the world’s leading brands, an Australian expert group said on Monday.

Leading global brands such as Apple, BMW and Sony have been accused of obtaining supplies from factories that use forced labor, an explosive accusation that could have an impact on boardrooms around the world.

The Australian Strategic Policy Institute said the Chinese government has transferred 80,000 or more Uyghurs from camps in Xinjiang to factories across the country.

“The Uyghurs are working in factories that are in the supply chains of at least 83 global brands known in the technology, clothing and automotive sectors,” said the expert group.

“Some factories in China are using Uyghur forced labor under a state-sponsored labor transfer scheme that is polluting the global supply chain.” The brands, he added, include “Apple, BMW, Gap, Huawei, Nike, Samsung, Sony and Volkswagen.”

“Companies that use Uyghur forced labor in their supply chains could be in breach of laws that prohibit the importation of goods made with forced labor or require disclosure of the risks of the forced labor supply chain,” he said. The report.

“The companies listed in this report must carry out immediate and thorough due diligence of human rights on their factory work in China, including solid and independent audits and social inspections.” AFP has contacted firms for a response to complaints.

An estimated one million mostly Muslim ethnic minorities have been detained in internment camps in Xinjiang.

After initially denying its existence, Beijing defined the facilities as “vocational education centers” where “students” learn Mandarin and job skills in an effort to keep them from religious extremism, terrorism and separatism.

Human rights groups and witnesses accuse China of trying to force the Uyghurs away from their Islamic customs and integrate them into the majority Han culture. Officially, the Chinese government says it is transferring “surplus” labor from Xinjiang to other regions in the name of poverty reduction.

According to the official Xinhua news agency, more than 25,000 Xinjiang workers were scheduled to be transferred “inland” to the Chinese Foreign Ministry in 2019 and the Xinjiang government did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the report. .

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