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(Source: Uyghur Human Rights Project)

Uyghur Women Forced into Interethnic Marriages in East Turkistan

Uyghur Human Rights Project (UHRP) based in Washington, DC released a report Forced Marriage of Uyghur Women: State Policies for Interethnic Marriage in East Turkistan on November 16, 2022 which examines Chinese government role in promoting, incentivizing, and coercing interethnic marriage between Uyghur women and Han men in East Turkistan.

UHRP researchers analyzed evidence from state-approved online accounts of interethnic marriages and weddings; state-approved personal online testimonials from individuals in interethnic marriages; government statements and policy directives; and firsthand accounts of coerced and incentivized marriages from Uyghur women in the diaspora. Government incentives with coercion to boost interethnic marriages have been occurring in the Uyghur region since 2014.

UHRP states that it has offered “compelling evidence to show that the Chinese Party-State is actively involved in carrying out a campaign of forcefully assimilating Uyghurs into Han Chinese society by means of mixed marriages.”

The PRC and CCP have a history of carrying out a policy of forced and incentivised interethnic marriages to achieve ‘unity’ and assimilation. Similar policies have been reported from the Tibetan region as well. An article in The Washington Post in August 2014 quotes the Tibetan poet Tsering Woeser  likening the promotion of intermarriage to the worst practices of colonization. “She compared it to Japanese police being encouraged to marry local women during Japan’s occupation of Taiwan.”

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