Chinese government should allow Uighur Muslims to fast: Indonesian Ulema's

Chinese government should allow Uighur Muslims to fast: Indonesian Ulema's

Photo document of Uighur Muslim in China. (

China is increasing its bans and monitoring as Ramadan approaches."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian Ulema Councils (MUIs) Chairman of Education Affairs, Anwar Abbas, urged the Chinese government to allow Uighur Muslims to fast during the holy month of Ramadan.

"The restriction on Uighur Muslims in the far western region of Xinjiang (East Turkestan) to fast during the holy month violates human rights. Therefore, we urge the Chinese government to allow Uighurs to perform fasting in the holy month," Abbas stated here on Thursday.

According to Abbas, China, as a big country, respects human rights and upholds the rights of religious followers.

"With advancements in science and information technology, China will not be able to impose restrictions on the people," he added.

Therefore, if the Chinese government continues to impose religious restrictions, it will become increasingly difficult to maintain peace and tranquility in the country.

"We urge the Indonesian government to take some measures related to the Ramadan fasting ban imposed on Uighur Muslims in China," he affirmed.

According to Reuters, the Chinese government has banned Muslims in the Xinjiang region from celebrating Ramadan, a traditional month-long period of fasting and spiritual reflection.

Reuters has reported that the authorities in the Muslim province are stepping up control on the Islamic faith, demanding that party members, civil servants, students, and teachers should not fast during Ramadan.

The Muslim holy month begins this Thursday, and Muslims around the world will observe it by abstaining from eating and drinking during the day.

Hundreds of people have been killed in the unrest in Xinjiang in the past two years, where Chinas repressive policies - including control on religion and Uighur culture - have intensified.

"China is increasing its bans and monitoring as Ramadan approaches. The faith of the Uighurs has been highly politicized, and the increase in control could cause sharp resistance," the World Uyghur Congress spokesperson Dilxat Raxit noted in a statement quoted by Reuters.

The Communist party has also recently ordered Uighurs to stock and sell alcohol and cigarettes in attractive displays, despite the fact that several Muslims consider it a sin to sell alcohol due to religious reasons.

Uighurs are subjected to discrimination in several aspects, including being prevented from practicing their faith openly, the banning of beards and headscarves, and being prevented from teaching Quran to their children. Moreover, officials and people below 18 years of age are banned from participating in religious activities.

Xinjiang, on the borders of Central Asia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India, is the historic home of the Uighur people who speak a Turkic language.