Three Uygurs in Indonesia who were jailed five years ago for attempting to join a terrorist group have been freed and are now subject of a repatriation tussle between China and Turkey, says a senior Indonesian security source, sparking fears by rights groups over the men’s safety.
According to Human Rights Watch (HRW), the trio may face dire consequences if returned to China, where “mass arbitrary detention, torture, and mistreatment” of Muslims in Xinjiang province by the Chinese government have been documented.
Beijing considers many Uygurs to be extremists and claims they are dangerous to China’s national security.
A senior Indonesian security source told This Week in Asia that three Uygurs had been released after completing their jail terms, while another two were still serving their sentences.
“Both Beijing and Ankara have asked for them,” the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity due to not being authorised to speak with the press. “Both are pressuring us.”