The Jewish Chronicle
Put Uyghurs before trade, Shoah survivors demand
TWO SHOAH survivors have warned that the UK is “not doing enough” for Uyghurs in China as trade ties with Beijing face growing scrutiny.
“Trade is not worth the price of a people,” Ruth Barnett and Dorit Oliver-Wolff wrote in a letter on Tuesday, calling for a meeting with the Prime Minister. “We simply cannot stand by when others remain silent.”
Ms Barnett and Ms Oliver-Wolff also made their appeal to Boris Johnson in a short video posted on social media.
Beijing faces widespread claims of human-rights abuses against Uyghurs, including allegations of forced labour and sterilisation, which it denies.
The government suffered a heavy defeat in the House of Lords on Tuesday, as peers voted by 367 to 214 in favour of a
Ruth Barnett mechanism allowing a parliamentary panel of former judges to determine whether a trade partner has carried out a genocide. The bill will now return to the House of Commons.
A No 10 spokesperson said: “The Prime Minister thanks Ruth and Dorit for their letter and will be responding. As the Prime Minister has said, the human- rights violations being carried out against the Uyghur people in Xinjiang are utterly abhorrent and we will continue to do our utmost to end these abuses. Genocide is a crime and, like other crimes, whether it has occurred should be decided by competent courts and judges.
“The proposed amendment to the trade bill could embroil the courts in the formulation of trade policy and international relations, and risked undermining the separation of powers.”