Eastern Turkestan Information Bulletin Vol. 3 No. 2
Published by Eastern Turkestan Union in Europe
Eastern Turkestan Information Bulletin Vol. 3 No. 2 (April 1993)
SINOCIZATION IN EASTERN TURKESTAN
In order to transform Eastern Turkestan completely into a Chinese province, the Chinese authorities are not only resettling Chinese there but at the same time they are systematically changing the names of cities and introducing Chinese words and expressions into Uighur language.
A few examples: Yarkent became Soche; Keriye became Yutien; Cherchen became Chimo, Kumul became Hami, Niye became Minfeng; Aksu became Wensu, Ili became Ining, Hoten became Hetien, Chogchek became Ta-cheng, Kashgar became Sul le or Kashi etc.
These Turkic names all have their meanings and the legends behind them. To site one example, Kashgar means 'the city of enamel." Kashgar, which has a history of 2,000 years, used to be a main centre for enamel wares. Neither Sul le or Kashi has a meaning either in Turkic or in Chinese.
Although the Turkic peoples of Eastern Turkestan have a long established and complete vocabulary, in the following examples Turkic words have been suppressed and replaced by Chinese words: Zhung for "centre;" Zhu shi for "chairman" or "president;", fla sho for institution of higher education:" Jino shi for "class room;" Pa yuan for "court;" Pin fan for "to rehabilitate;" Pi fang for " to denounce;" etc.
Internationally accepted words in current use, like "telephone,'
'telegram," "museum," "television," "doctrine," "dialectic,' "dogma," "committee,' etc., which Uighurs have long used, have all been replaced by Chinese words.
An Uighur youth must now use jiaogong kil for "to work on a subject," baoshaa kil for "to prepare the bill," shangho kil for "to make a joke," etc.
These are only few examples. An Uighur who does not speak Chinese and who wants to read a book published in Uighur under the Chinese Communist rule would have difficulty understanding it because of the mass introduction of new Chinese words and expressions.
Turkic intellectuals in Eastern Turkestan fear that if this policy continues at its present pace, not only will names in Eastern Turkestan be totally sinicized, but in the coming decades their tongue may also disappear from usage.
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BAREN VICTIMS REMEMBERED
Eastern Turkestanis abroad commemorated the third anniversary of the Baren uprising with special meetings, gathering and press conferences.
Baren is a township in Aktu county near Kashgar. The area of Baren is about 1087 sq. kilometres. According to the official statistics its population is around 20,000.
On April 5, 1990 an armed uprising broke out in Baren provoked by Chinese Communists. Almost three thousand armed Eastern Turkestanis under the leadership of Zeydin Yusuf disarmed the police forces, occupied the Baren township Party and government building and declared war against the Chinese Communists in order to establish a independent Eastern Turkestan Republic. By late afternoon the uprising had spread to nine other townships in the area.
The Chinese Communist authorities dispatched armed police forces, militiamen and Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) units to Baren early on the morning of April 6. At the same time 200,000 special anti-riot forces from Lanzhou Military District were dispatched to Eastern Turkestan. Troops were flown in day and night by military transport planes and helicopters. The airports of Urumchi, Aksu, Kashgar, Yarkent and Hoten were closed.
The Eastern Turkestani people took up hunting rifles and any weapons they could find while some Chinese soldiers threw away their weapons and fled. According to the witnesses the Chinese used tanks and fighters to bomb townships in the area. Nine townships were bombed and almost one thousand Eastern Turkestanis and 600 soldiers and policemen died.
Beginning on April 8 martial law was enforced in the area. As resistance
continued almost 2,000 Eastern Turkestanis retreated to the nearby Pamir Mountains and continued their resistance until they were totally wiped out by fighter bombers.
According to witnesses, Tomur Dawamet, the governor of so-called Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region who visited the scene of the Chinese brutality, with tears in his eyes asked the Chinese officials, "How could you do this?"
Amnesty International, in a November 1992 report on Eastern Turkestan gave a detailed account of the Chinese massacre in Baren township.
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ALPTEKIN AT TURKIC CONFERENCE
Isa Yusuf AIptekin lead an Eastern Turkestani delegation to the World Turkic Conference in Antalya, Turkey, between March 20 and 23 this year.
The aim of the conference, sponsored by the Turkish government, was to strengthen the friendship, brotherhood and cooperation among the Turkic peoples.
Almost one thousand delegates from Turkic-speaking peoples participated the conference including shamanist Sakhas, Orthodox Christian, Yakuts,
Chuvash and Gagauz, and Jewish Karaim.
Mr. Alptekin told the assembly,. 'most of the Turkic world is now free. The only Turkic country now under foreign domination is Eastern Turkestan. Eastern Turkestan is a indivisible part of the 150 million population of the Turkic world. The independent Turkic states should now do their utmost to support the Eastern Turkestani peoples' struggle for democracy, human rights and
self-determination. Otherwise they will be responsible for the total annihilation of the Turkic peoples of Eastern Turkestan at the hands of the Chinese Communists.'
Mr. Alptekin was received by Turkish President Turgut Ozal, Prime Minister Suleyman Demirel and vice Premier Erdal Inonu, who were the patrons of the conference. During the meeting, the Turkish President told Mr. Alptekin that most of his dreams had been realized and the rest would be realized soon.
In response to a petition presented to the conference by the Eastern Turkestani delegation, the organizing committee in its final report declared that "the Turkic World denounces the Chinese atrocities in Eastern Turkestan. The Turkic world cannot continue to remain silent in the face of a systematic assimilation policy directed against its ethnic brothers in Eastern Turkestan. This policy could lead to serious destabilization in the area, and thus, the Turkic world must immediately start a constructive dialogue with the Chinese government to prevent the total destruction of the Turkic peoples in Eastern Turkestan."
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CHINESE INVADE CENTRAL ASIA
Chinese settlement has become a major cause of concern in the Central Asian Republics.
After the independence of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan China concluded a series of bilateral agreements with the new republics for the exchange of delegations and the establishment of joint ventures. Thus began a Chinese invasion of Central Asia. In the beginning, the republics welcomed Chinese economic help, but the subsequent settling of Chinese in the republics has begun to cause concern. Many Chinese who came to assist have not returned to China even after the expiration of their visas. Many have married local women and acquired property. It has been reported that at present almost 150,000 Chinese have already settled in Alma Ata, almost 100,000 in Uzbekistan and about 75,000 in Kyrgyzstan. Fearing to antagonize the Chinese government, Central Asian authorities are reluctant to extradite the illegal Chinese settlers.
The issue has become a major topic in the Central Asian press. The Kazakh newspaper Atamekan (Fatherland), wrote on March 13, 1993: "Being a major Soviet nuclear testing site, until now our major concern was ecological disaster in Kazakhstan. But now the Chinese settlers in our country have become a even greater problem than ecological disaster. There is no other word to describe the present situation. The number of the Chinese, those who came to help us out of our economic difficulties, is growing day by day. They come with a lot of money. They seek out attractive Kazakh women and offer money to marry them. Then they buy houses and land and establish businesses and settle here. In the past, Russians occupied our country using similar methods. Now there are more than six million Russians in Kazakhstan. As most of them do not want to return to their country, we are obliged to live with them now. Are we going to be living with millions of Chinese in the near future also? It is true that we have a large territory. Our neighbor Eastern Turkestan had a large territory as well, but today that country is overrun by Chinese settlers. We should also not forget that the Chinese have always had territorial demands of us. It is time that our government take the necessary steps to curb the number of Chinese settlers in this country."
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KAZAKH SCHOLAR BASHES CHINA
Kazakh scholar Mirza Jumahan, during an interview with Kazakh Journalist Seyasat Beyishbaev, accused the Chinese authorities of sewing seeds of discord among the Turkic peoples of Eastern Turkestan. He said in the early 1950s the Chinese Communists divided the Turkic peoples of Eastern Turkestan who had been united throughout history into autonomous regions, provinces and counties. Then they started to set the peoples living within these regions against one another. After the independence of the Central Asian Turkic republics, Chinese authorities started a campaign to set the - Kazakhs of Eastern Turkestan against each other by promoting their tribal background. He said that the Kazakh belongs to three major tribes called Kuchuk Juz (Little Horde), Orta Juz (Middle Horde) and Buyuk Juz (Big Horde). These hordes also have their subdivisions. The Chinese are now using this tribal and sub-tribal background of the Kazakhs to try and set one against the other. According to Jumahan, the aim is to destroy the unity of the Kazakhs in Eastern Turkestan in order to avoid their desire to unite with the Kazakhs in Kazakhstan.
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KANAT AT WISCONSIN CONFERENCE
Mr. Omar Kanat, the General Secretary of Eastern Turkestan Cultural Association in Europe, attended the Fifth International Conference on Central Asia held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA, on April l5-l8, 1993. Mr. Kanat presented a paper entitled "Impact of the Decline of the Soviet Empire and the Independence of Central Asian Republics on Eastern Turkestan."
Mr. Kanat, a historian, in his paper briefly said that the Chinese authorities, fearing the contagion of independence from Western Turkestan, are taking extraordinary safety measures in Eastern Turkestan. This suggests that China is calculating it can control by force any movement in Eastern Turkestan inspired by events in Central Asian republics and apply its economic might to contain the spread of any activities in those republics.
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NEW UIGHUR GRAMMAR PUBLISHED
In Turkey a new book has been added to the collection written on Uighur history. culture and civilization. The Orkun Publishing House has published Modern Uighur Grammar, by Prof. Dr. Sultan Mahmut Kashgarli. Prof. Kashgarli, a well-known Uighur linguist who immigrated to Turkey in 1985, teaches Turkic languages at the University of Istanbul. His new book is becoming a main source for Uighur studies in Turkish universities. Modern Uighur Grammar is presently being translated into English.
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TURKIC SYMPOSIUM IN AUSTRIA
A one day symposium on interrelations among the Turkic peoples was organized in Innsbruck, Austria, on April, 17, 1993. Asgar Can, the treasurer of Eastern Turkestan Cultural Center in Europe attended the symposium. Asgar Can, an economist, presented a paper on Chinese economic exploitations in Eastern Turkestan. Asgar Can said that in order to transform Eastern Turkestan completely into a Chinese province, Chinese authorities are not only transferring millions of Chinese settlers into this country, but at the same time systematically sinocizing Turkic names and economically exploiting the Turkic peoples. Asgar Can said, despite Eastern Turkestan's natural wealth, almost 80 percent of the Turkic people in Eastern Turkestan live below the poverty line of 45-50 dollars annual income. He said, if one percent of Eastern Turkestan's natural wealth had been given to the Turkic peoples, they would have become one of the wealthiest peoples of the world. But today, they cannot afford to send their children to schools because of the 30 dollar annual education fee asked from the students. Asgar Can called on the delegates to the symposium to set up Eastern Turkestan support groups to bring the plight of their ethnic brethren to the attention of the countries where they reside.
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TURKISH TV AND EASTERN TURKESTAN
Erkin AIptekin, the chairman of the Eastern Turkestan Cultural Center in Europe, was invited to take part in a Turkish TV discussion entitled "Turkey and the Turkic World" which took place in Berlin, on April 23, 1993. The discussion was led by Prof. Dr. Faruk Shen, Director of the Institute of Turkish Studies in Bonn. Other participants were Askar Kartari, a Azeri journalist, Hakim Oezgen. Kyrgyz journalist and Numan Hazar, under secretary at the Turkish Embassy in Bonn. Alptekin said that at present the Turkic peoples in Eastern Turkestan were faced with the danger of total assimilation at the hands of the Chinese and that Turkey and the independent Turkic republics had historical obligations to support their ethnic. brothers in Eastern Turkestan.
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UIGHUR FOLKLORE IN MUNICH
The Uighur folklore dance group, newly established by the Eastern Turkestan Cultural Center in Europe, was invited by the Bavarian Teachers' Association to perform at the celebration of the Third International Teachers day, held in Munich on March 5. Turkish, Italian, Greek and Spanish groups also participated. The "exotic" Uighur group was very much appreciated by the guests and members of the Bavarian press. The group was later invited to perform by the Goethe Institute. The Uighur folk dance group is lead by Halise Abdullah, a professional Uighur dancer from Eastern Turkestan.
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LETTER FROM EASTERN TURKESTAN
The following letter was received from a countrymen who has requested anonymity:
"...In the past, the Chinese forced us to embrace communism. Later they tried to educate us in atheism. Now with sweet promises we are asked to convert to Christianity. At present, there are hundreds of missionaries in Eastern Turkestan. They are distributing copies of the Bible and audio and video cassettes translated into Uighur. Those who convert are promised immigration to European countries, protection by the Church and material benefits. I do not know how many Uighur have converted, but the situation will slowly get out of hand unless something is done soon. In the past the Chinese banned any missionary activity in Eastern Turkestan, but since the independence of the Central Asian republics, the Chinese have kept a close eye on missionary activities in Eastern Turkestan. At the same time they are playing a dirty game. The aim is to provoke Eastern Turkestanis against the missionaries. If Eastern Turkestanis are provoked the Chinese use the missionaries to stamp Eastern Turkestanis as fundamentalists. The Chinese know very well that Western countries fear fundamentalism and every peaceful demonstration in this country is presented by the Chinese as a fundamentalist provocation. The aim is to justify the persecution of our people. At present, we are in a very difficult situation. Can you help us find a solution to this problem? We would be very grateful if the missionaries would try to make the world aware of our plight instead of trying to convert us to Christianity by offering material benefits. What good does it do Christianity if some are converted merely because of material gains?
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UNPO AT LIECHTENSTEIN MEETING
On March 16-17 the government of Liechtenstein hosted a conference to discuss Liechtenstein's proposal for an international convention on self-determination. All the UN member states were invited and some fifty governments, the European Community and the Council of Europe sent
representatives. The only non-governmental organization represented at the meeting was Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO).
During the conference, Dr. van Walt, the General Secretary of UNPO argued for a strengthening of the right to self-determination, and cautioned against emphasizing the territorial integrity of states and the automatic identification of self- determination with secession.
UNPO was also represented at an international round table in Amman, Jordan on strengthening the commitment to the universality of human rights. Ms Chandra Roy, representative of the Jumma people of the Chitagong Hill Tracts, was there in her capacity as head of UNPO's legal department.
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The aim of the Eastern Turkestan Information Bulletin is to disseminate objective current information on the people, culture and civilization of Eastern Turkestan and to provide a forum for discussion on a wide range of topics and complex issues. ETIB is published bi-monthly by the Eastern Turkestani Union in Europe(ETUE), established January 11, 1991 in Munich, Germany. Neither ETIB nor ETUE claim or accept responsibility for views otherwise identified within our pages. We hope that those using information from our publication in published works will be courteous enough to cite its source. All inquiries and contributions should be addressed to Eastern Turkestan Information Bulletin, Asgar Can, Editor, St. Blasien Str. 2, D-80809 Munich, Germany.
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Last updated 06/29/99