China Appoints Former Xinjiang Chief of Security as New Leader of the Communist Party in Tibet

Chinese state media say a high -ranking official sanctioned by the West for alleged human rights violations in the country’s northwestern province of Xinjiang has been chosen by the ruling Communist Party to oversee Tibet.

Wang Junzheng became head of the Tibetan Communist Party after serving as deputy party secretary and head of security in the remote northwestern region.

Wang, 58, is one of several Chinese officials who have been sanctioned by the United States, European Union, Britain and Canada for human rights abuses against the Muslim Uyghur minority in Xinjiang province, a move that has prompted retaliation from China.

Human rights advocates say about 1 million Uyghurs are held in camps. Some accuse China of torture, forced sterilization and forced labour.

China argues that its actions in Xinjiang are to eradicate Islamic extremism.

China has controlled the Tibetan region, which is predominantly Buddhist, since 1950 when its troops entered the region on what it calls “peaceful liberation.” [ka/ab]

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