Virtually Islamic Blog

Gary R. Bunt

Uighurs & social media

Darren Byler, Guardian, China’s hi-tech war on its Muslim minority, 10 Apr 2019

"Many of the detainees had been arrested for having supposedly committed religious and political transgressions through social media apps on their smartphones, which Uighurs are required to produce at checkpoints around Xinjiang. Although there was often no real evidence of a crime according to any legal standard, the digital footprint of unauthorised Islamic practice, or even a connection to someone who had committed one of these vague violations, was enough to land Uighurs in a detention centre. The mere fact of having a family member abroad, or of travelling outside China, as Alim had, often resulted in detention." These are significant technology and control issues. The article is a long read but an important one for anybody concerned about censorship, control, and digital identities.

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