Nike and H&M face China backlash after warning of Uighur forced labour in cotton industry – BBC News

nike and h m are among major clothing retailers facing a backlash in china after expressing concern about allegations that uyghurs are being used as forced labour in the production of cotton the retailers who made the statements last year have found themselves at the center of a growing row after sanctions were imposed on chinese officials by the uk and other western countries this week it's estimated that nearly a million mostly muslim uighurs are detained in camps in the northwest region of xinjiang bbc investigations have gathered first-hand testimony of forced labour and allegations that detainees have been raped and tortured china denies the claims and says the camps are vocational training schools our world affairs editor john simpson reports the stories about the uyghur camps have spread around the world after reports of forced labour in the cotton fields of xinjiang province international companies like h m and nike have all reacted strongly and that's brought an angry backlash from china which says the accusations about the uyghurs are lies today in the turkish capital ankara the chinese foreign minister wang yi has come to talk to president erdogan there were protests by uyghur exiles turkey has strong ethnic and cultural links to the uyghurs and it's always given them refuge a uighur woman nurisman abu rashid who went to turkey to study recently found that her entire family back in xinjiang had been arrested father mother and two brothers when i asked them why and they said my family members think they might have an intention to attend terrorist activists twelve years ago when china clamped down on rioting among the uyghurs the turkish leader reject erdogan called it genocide it's not a word he'd use today china is pressurizing turkey to ratify an extradition treaty which would mean handing over any uyghurs china once returned china is just far too powerful economically and the too many trader deals all came with the terms and conditions so effectively china's bought off turkey yeah just like all the other countries many arab countries and muslim countries like pakistan and they're not speaking speaking up at all turkey's economy has suffered badly from kovid which has brought a collapse in tourism its biggest foreign currency earner and since the west isn't doing much to help mr erdogan has turned to china which offers turkey everything from covid vaccines to weapons the turkish embassy hasn't replied to our questions about this the fact is tech is really up against it it's got its serious economic problems and it's moving away from its old friends in the west china is only too happy to step in but part of the price for that would be to keep quiet about the uyghurs i really want to see them again i'm not sure if i can or not they spent their whole life to offer me a good education to have a good life there's no shortage of stories like this but turkey doesn't seem to complain about them publicly anymore john simpson bbc news

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