URUMQI, Nov. 3 (Xinhua) -- Over recent years, some Western anti-China forces have hyped up the so-called "forced labor" issue in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, as part of a systematic attempt to smear China's international image. This maliciously fabricated narrative has served as a reckless political tool to contain China.
The farce has now been spread to the seafood industry. After a recent article published by The New Yorker accused Chinese seafood processors of using so-called "forced Uygur labor" sourced from Xinjiang, some importers from the U.S. and Europe terminated cooperation with alleged fisheries companies in China's coastal regions, while some Western politicians demanded the ban on market entry of relevant seafood.
According to SeafoodSource, a news website for the seafood industry, most of the initial internal investigations by both Chinese seafood processors and their international clients "turned up no evidence" that Uygur labor was being employed. Furthermore, their audit results showed "absence of forced labor" and "compliance with social standards."
In some Western minds, a presumption of guilt is established in a matter where Uygur labor is involved, even if no violation of human rights has been found. It is as if Uygur people working for a Chinese company constitutes an original sin in itself.
Without first-hand information or checking of facts, certain Western media outlets piece together their reports on Xinjiang by using questionable sources of information. They quote anonymous sources and false statements rebuking China, misinterpret video footage on Chinese online platforms, and use sensational and biased news headlines, all in an effort to mislead their audience and spread fallacies.
After conducting a statistical analysis of over 30,000 Xinjiang-related stories from media outlets in 15 countries and regions, Tuersun Aibai, a scholar at Xinjiang University, noticed an evolving strategy employed by some Western anti-China forces to manipulate public opinion and frame the transfer of employment as so-called "forced labor."
Over time, the public opinion campaign launched by anti-China forces has transitioned from "slandering Xinjiang" to "criminalizing the Chinese government." They have also introduced and implemented "legislative economic sanctions" on China to serve their purpose of engineering a "strategic containment of China," according to Tuersun Aibai.
In addition, their slurs aimed at hurting China have expanded from the cotton industry to the tomato, photovoltaic, seafood and other industries, creating barriers to business activities for both domestic and foreign companies through a series of biased source traces and audits of supply chains.
The fallacious narrative of "forced labor," fabricated by certain Western anti-China forces, serves as a means to impede China's progress, rather than reflecting genuine care for human rights conditions in Xinjiang, which they claim as their motivation.
By dispelling this cloud of falsehoods, individuals with discerning minds in the global community can certainly attest to the security, stability, and prosperity of Xinjiang. ■