Report: China Phone Monitoring Targets Uyghurs

Image copyright: Reuters [via Al Jazeera]

The Facts

  • According to a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report published on Thursday, Chinese authorities monitor the phones of ethnic minority Uyghurs, with a list of 50K known multimedia files used to flag violent extremism. Possession of the Quran is reportedly enough to trigger a police interrogation.

  • The list includes alleged "violent and terrorist" content from militant groups like the Islamic State but also allegedly includes material from organizations that promote the identity or self-determination of the mostly Muslim Uyghurs from the far-west Xinjiang region.

The Spin

Anti-China narrative

The Chinese government has surveilled and detained Uyghurs simply due to their religion. This has nothing to do with national security or fighting terrorism and everything to do with clamping down on minorities who wish to be free from the CCP regime. Countries concerned by these findings should identify the technology companies involved in this illegal surveillance and take appropriate action against them.

Pro-China narrative

Nations with an anti-China agenda have consistently concocted misinformation about what's really happening in Xinjiang. The PRC's policies aren't about human rights or religion; they're about combating violent terrorism and radicalization. As Washington intensifies its aggressive stance, its government-funded human rights organizations are fabricating stories about Uyghur oppression to build anti-China sentiment around the world.

Metaculus Prediction

Establishment split



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