It has been shown in the preceding sections that the lands of East Turkestan have been Muslim for the last 1,000 years. Yet for more than half a century now, it has been living under occupation by the Chinese administration. A graffiti on a door at the University of Urumchi, described by Andrew Higgins (correspondent of The Independent) as "sheer racial venom" clearly reflects the Chinese view of the Uighur Turks:

Make Uyghur men our slaves forever and take Uyghur women as prostitutes for generations.25

China maintains up to 1 million soldiers under arms in the region, and controls everything that the Muslims in East Turkestan do. All vehicles are stopped at military checkpoints set up along the roads, the men are sometimes insulted and slapped about as their cars are searched, and Muslim women are abused. Chinese pressure is not restricted to stopping vehicles or frequent house searches by the military. The June 29, 2000 edition of the Japanese Mainichi Daily News described the oppression in the following terms:

Chinese control [over East Turkestan] grows ever tighter and more intolerable. People's Liberation Army soldiers are everywhere. Travel and attendance at mosques are restricted. Communications are primitive and policed. Few farm villages have telephones, and urban phones are liable to be tapped. One can be jailed for years on mere suspicion of subversion.26

Muslims are arrested on invalid grounds and sent off to labor camps, executed on groundless charges, and from time to time murdered en masse. They are not allowed to fast, and are prevented from receiving religious instruction. The method used to stop the Muslim population from growing is utterly inhuman: Women are forced to have abortions, and the children of those who have more than one child are taken away from them.

In the face of all this cruelty and oppression, the people of East Turkestan have no means of protecting themselves or their rights. Muslims all over the world can help these defenseless people in many different ways. All measures to allow the voice of the people of East Turkestan to be heard and to attract the attention of international organizations are important.

The greatest assistance that can be given is to wage a struggle on the level of ideas to destroy the atheism that all that oppression stems from, and replace it with a just and proper morality. In that way, not just the Muslims of East Turkestan but all those who are wickedly killed all over the world, or are forced from their homelands just for saying, "God is our Lord," or can be helped.

All believers share an equal responsibility in this matter. God reveals in a verse, ". Whoever strives does it entirely for himself." (Qur'an, 29:6). In another verse, He describes the responsibility that falls to believers in these terms: "Would that there had been more people with a vestige of good among the generations of those who came before you, who forbade corruption in the Earth." (Qur'an, 11:116) Preventing evil in this world is the common duty of all people of conscience.

The Chinese army controls East Turkestan with an iron hand. The Muslims' lives are rigidly controlled, and those whom the Communist Party regards as a threat are arrested.


Communist ideology maintains that matter has no beginning or end, denies the existence of God, and rejects all spiritual values. It has been put into practice in a number of different countries, yet every time it has ended up inflicting terrible suffering. The reason for this is communist ideology's view of life and human beings. This is communist ideology's world view and the general structure of those societies in which it has been practiced:

-In communist societies, human beings are regarded as advanced forms of animal, based on Darwin's theory of evolution. For that reason, society is seen as a large herd of animals, and little value is ascribed to human beings.

- The logic of "There are many members of the herd, so one fewer does not matter" prevails. The mentality which regards life as a "struggle for survival," sees nothing wrong with the elimination of the weak. On the contrary, it regards it as necessary. Selfishness is its defining feature. The crippled or those who cannot work are expelled from the herd and left to die.

- Just like animals in a herd, society is made up of one type of human being. People are made to dress, think and speak alike. There is little room for different cultures, beliefs or ideas.

- Individuals' contributions to society are more important than their own interests. Tireless workers and peasants are the ideal. The system is based solely on the material concepts of work and production. The logic of "production strengthens the herd" rules.

The communist regime's ideal is an entirely homogenous society. The damage done by communist ideology, which attaches little worth to human beings and regards society as no more than a herd of animals, is even reflected in people's faces.

- No account is ever taken of human characteristics or proper morality. There is little room in communist societies for human feelings such as forgiveness, compassion, faith or love.

- Since fear of God is systematically destroyed, people are held back from committing crimes mostly because they fear the system itself. That is why an improper action can be committed if the system will not see it, or if the culprit will not be punished. Theft, prostitution, murder and moral degeneration are widespread in communist societies.

Under communism people are only of value if they produce. They must therefore work like machines to benefit the system. According to this twisted view, those who are not productive are condemned to be eliminated.

- According to communist ideology, which rejects belief in the hereafter, people cease to exist when they die. That explains why people do everything in their power to stay alive and remain strong. Since they believe they are engaged in a struggle for survival and see everyone else as a rival, they can easily perpetrate all kinds of evil in their own interests.

In communist societies, good workers are the ideal human beings. People work in terrible conditions and under the command of oppressive leaders, and face severe punishment for the slightest infringement of the rules.



China's policy on East Turkestan is a general reflection of communist ideology. That is why it is impossible to evaluate what is going on in East Turkestan independently of that ideology. Similar cruelty and oppression is inflicted on different individuals and communities all over China, which shows that a totalitarian structure is an inseparable part of communism. In this section we shall, therefore, be considering the cruelty and suffering inflicted by China's ideology and its despotic regime on its own people, as well as the suffering of the people of East Turkestan.

Collections of the words of Mao were the people's only guides in communist China. In some posters, Mao compares himself to Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin.

The teachings of Mao, based on ruthlessness and brutality, led to the death of millions.

All regimes that are hostile to religion resort to pressure and violence in order to keep themselves in power. The most oppressive, dictatorial regimes have always oppressed, even despised, the people who resisted their policies. From this point of view there is little difference between Pharaoh and Hitler, Hitler and Stalin, or Stalin and Mao. None of these leaders had any hesitation about killing innocent people and ordering terrible slaughter for the sake of power and their own ideologies. Just like the others, Mao set up concentration camps in order to strengthen the communist regime, turned them into torture centers, and had millions of people who failed to think like him ruthlessly killed.

Nothing in the Chinese government's policy of oppression changed during the time of Deng Xiaoping (above), who came to power after Mao.
The People's Republic of China, founded in 1949, was built upon totalitarian despotism, intense bureaucracy, and a system of state control of all resources and means of production. The disasters brought about by Mao's economic policies and his policies of restricted famine led to enormous loss of life and a general collapse. Mao's successor, Deng Xiaoping, hoped to put the economy right by carrying out economic reforms and opened the country up to foreign investors and a liberal economy. Yet those economic improvements only benefited the top levels of the state machinery. The people of China benefited very little. Moreover, despite the trend towards a liberal economy there was very little equivalent political or social progress. No matter how much people talk about "the old communist system" with regard to China, and claim that communism has come to an end, the facts disprove this claim.

China is still run by a totalitarian mentality that has its roots in Mao's vision of communism. The reforms in the economic field have not brought about any major changes in the minds of the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party.

A large part of the economic progress and revenues are used to increase the repression of the population and to silence the voices of opposition. China currently has the highest capital punishment rate of any country in the world. Furthermore, it is perhaps the only country in which executions are turned into public spectacles, and where the internal organs of those executed are removed without their permission and sold for profit, where pregnant women are forced to have abortions. There are more than 1,000 labor camps in the country, and those detained in them are systematically tortured.

Only Communist Party officials benefit from the economic liberalization in China, and the people as a whole continue to live in hunger and poverty.


The death penalty is an important control mechanism of the Red Chinese regime. The famous Chinese dissident Harry Wu describes the situation in his country as follows:

Party leaders accused of supporting capitalism are first put on public display, and then are executed.

The dictatorship is tightly associated with violence and has even grown dependent on it. It practices the Chinese idiom of "Kill the Chicken to Scare the Monkey." The public education carried out by sentencing rallies and mass executions shows the Party's reliance on public violence.27

Although it is impossible to specify the exact number, millions of people have executed by the Red Chinese regime. Most figures are based on estimates, although the latest research has revealed that the number of people killed is much higher than was previously believed. The fact that the communist regime regards executions and murder as one of its basic principles is well known. In a confidential document dated May 16, 1951, Mao revealed that the number of people to be killed had been established in line with a definite quota:

Talking about the number of counter-revolutionaries to be killed, a certain proportion must be set. In rural areas, it should not exceed 1/1000 of the population. In killing counter-revolutionaries in the urban areas, generally it should be below 1/1,000 of the population; the number .5/1000 seems appropriate. For example, among the 2,000,000 people of Peking, over 600 were killed. Another 300 are planned to be killed. A total number of 1,000 will be enough. It is still necessary to kill other big batches and we must do all we can do to kill two thirds of those who are predetermined to be killed by the end of July. 28

When planning his massacres, Mao saw no need to prove that the person to be killed actually committed a crime. He regarded killing as necessary simply because of the fear it would instill in society, and saw that number of executions as a "matter of quotas." Another example of this way of thinking is found in Stalin's famous statement: "the death of one person is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic."29 As a result of the communist Stalin's "statistical" murders, an estimated 40 million innocent people lost their lives.

Mao had no hesitation about personally signing the death warrants of those to be killed. In a document dated January 17, 1951, he gave the following order to his comrades, which included Deng Xiaoping:

In 21 counties in western Hunan, over 4,600 bandit chieftains, local tyrants, and Kuomingtang agents were killed. Another batch are planned to be killed this year by local authorities. I believe this disposal is very necessary. in places, we must kill big batches.dealing heavy blows means killing all reactionaries that should be killed with a firm hand. 30

In the early days when Mao was still alive, executions were carried out with great speed, sometimes in public and at other times in secret. In 1953, for instance, a woman called Yang Pei only learned that her husband had been executed when she applied for a divorce.

Executions continued in the Deng period. At the same time, an unbelievable "savings" measure was started, under which the cost of the bullet fired into the skull of the person executed was paid by his family. The state also found another means of turning a profit out of executions: The internal organs of the victims were sold, and all the profits went into the state coffers.

It is clear, therefore, that the current rulers of Red China are merely following in the footsteps of their so-called "eternal" leader Mao when they stage public executions or murder people in labor camps.

Executions are still staged on a regular basis in China. It is not known how many people are executed in the course of a year because the Chinese government treats such information as a state secret. However, the following figures will help to provide a general idea:

Amnesty International has reported there were 2,050 executions in China during 1994. It recently released the figure of 1,313 reported executions in China during the first half of 1995.31

The New York Times, 9.9.01

Radikal, 7.7.01

In an article in The New York Times called "Chinese Justice Tools:Torture and Executions," it was reported that China has the highest number of executions of any country in the world. Some people sentenced to execution are first paraded in the streets, and then killed in full public view. The cost of the bullets used in executions is reclaimed from the victims' families.

Radikal, 19.6.01

Yeni Safak, 22.5.01

Cumhuriyet, 22.5.01
Only a very few of the executions in China are reported in the press, yet even these are enough to show the scale of the brutality.

The numbers have risen still further in the 2000s. In the first three months of 2001, 1,781 people were executed. That figure does not include the 2,960 people still awaiting execution.32

Wang Shouxin, accused of corruption in a coal business, was just one of thousands of Chinese people killed in the snow with a single bullet. Red China extracts the cost of the bullet employed from the victims' families. Such brutal scenes are often to be witnessed in China.


That figure is more than all the other countries in the rest of the world combined for the last three years alone. Among those executed are people from all kinds of social groups, including girls aged 15-16 and religious leaders.

The common "crime" of the great majority of these people was to want to live in freedom in their own country and to enjoy the most basic human freedoms, those of speech, thought and worship. Yet in the eyes of the Chinese government, both common criminals and supporters of democracy are all "counter-revolutionaries." That is why as many people are executed for "thought crimes" as for ordinary criminal offences. What is more, a number of new methods have recently been introduced in order for those guilty of "political crimes" to be executed. The most widespread of these is political detainees are accused of trumped up criminal offences.

In the article "Torture Hurries a New Wave of Executions in China," in the September 9, 2001, edition of The New York Times, it was stated that some 191 executions are carried out daily as the result of statements given under torture. According to the report, at least 3,000 people had been executed since April, and a further two or three times that figure were expected to be executed.


Chinese officials have always thought that capital punishment was necessary in order to keep the public in line and to strengthen the government. For that reason, they choose to parade those to be executed through the streets and then kill them in full public view. Those to be killed are brought before the public in handcuffs and made to face the spectators. Their names and crimes are written on placards hung around their necks. These scenes of savagery in full public view are also broadcast live on television.

Mass executions and the parading of those due to be killed through the streets have been methods employed since the earliest days of communist China.


Following the publication of scenes of mass executions in Newsweek magazine in 1984, the Chinese government feared that this might damage the country's image, and issued an order that those condemned to die should no longer be paraded through the streets. That order was subsequently expanded, and the fact that political detainees had been executed was to be kept secret even from their families. These instructions did not mean that political killings had been done away with in China, but that they were still proceeding apace, albeit out of sight. Following the events in Tiananmen Square in 1989, concerns over domestic policy overrode the country's image abroad, and many involved in the opposition were publicly executed.
Red China's habit of executing people due to their ideas was also seen during the time of the Prophet Moses and one of the cruelest despots in history - the Egyptian Pharaoh. Pharaoh threatened the followers of Moses with death because they refused to obey him and to abide by his rules. That threat is reported in the Qur'an:

He [Pharaoh] said, "Have you believed in him before I authorized you? He is your chief who taught you magic. But you will soon know! I will cut off your alternate hands and feet and I will crucify every one of you." (Qur'an, 26:49)



Although China's policy regarding its own people is utterly ruthless, things are even worse in East Turkestan. The number of East Turkestan Muslims executed is enormous. Any initiative by the Muslim population to live according to their religion or speak their own language, which are fundamental rights, is savagely punished.

Just as in China as a whole, executions still go on in East Turkestan, and innocent people are killed in the absence of any firm evidence. Chinese courts are not independent like those in democratic countries, but operate within the framework of the Communist Party's political agenda. That is why the cases of people condemned to death are heard very quickly, and defendants are not given the necessary time and means to defend themselves properly. The death penalty is usually carried out so fast that victims' families are unaware of its event. According to official figures, 210 Muslims were executed in East Turkestan alone in 1997-1999, and it is believed that the true figure is actually a great deal higher.33 Executions are carried out every single month, and Mao's method of "killing by quotas" is scrupulously implemented.

Muslims executed in East Turkestan.

One of the methods resorted to by the Chinese regime in order to intimidate the Muslim population is mass arrests and torture while in detention. Most Muslims under arrest are sentenced to long terms in labor camps, and many of these are never heard of again. Families have no idea where prisoners are being held, or whether they are alive or dead.

When the young people of East Turkestan express the entirely justified demand to be allowed to live by their own religion and culture, they are punished with death by the communist regime. At the outset, some executions were broadcast by Chinese television as a "deterrent." However, the Chinese government later abandoned that practice out of concern over protests.

Pharaoh said, "Have you believed in him before I authorized you to do so? This is just some plot you have concocted in the city to drive its people from it. I will cut off your alternate hands and feet and then I will crucify every one of you."
(Qur'an, 7:123-124)

Torture is widespread in Chinese prisons and labor camps. Various international organizations have drawn attention to the systematic torture carried out in China, and in their reports have warned the Chinese government. One of these was a 34-page report published by Amnesty International in 1999, which considered human rights violations in East Turkestan. One of the many incidents described in the report concerned descriptions of the grim prison conditions by the relatives of one 17-year-old detainee:

The jail was so crowded that prisoners were held 5 or 6 to a single cell - too small to allow them all to lie down at night; they had to take turns to sleep. Whenever police officers "visited" them in their cells, they were beaten. Those prisoners selected for interrogation were taken to a special room where they were beaten, kicked and given electric shocks with electric batons. The interrogation room was equipped with a rail fixed on the wall. Some prisoners were hung on the rail with one foot and one hand tied to the rail with handcuffs. They were left in that position for 24 hours. When they were untied, they could not stand straight. Some prisoners had their fingernails pulled out with pliers. Others had wires inserted under the nails.34

Just one of the thousands of Uighur Turks, arrested by the Chinese security forces in Gulja on February 4, 1997, subjected to unbelievable torture simply because of their beliefs.

The prisoner who underwent those experiences spent two months in prison, and was only released following payment of a 2,000 yen bribe by his family. The torture inflicted on another prisoner at the Public Security Bureau after being arrested was even more pitiless. What is more, that person's only crime was to meet and engage in an exchange of ideas with friends:

Some Chinese torture methods

Next to the detention centre is an underground place where some suspects are interrogated. He was questioned there in the evenings and tortured in various ways. For example, his hands were tied behind his back and the interrogators would lift his arms, pulling them up high in a twisted and painful position behind his back. He was given electric shocks with electric batons. The shocks were applied all over his body, including in his mouth and on his penis, which caused intense pain. The interrogators hit him on the bones of the legs with a wooden baton. They made him kneel down and hit him on the thighs and the shoulders with the baton. While tortured, he was made to wear a kind of metal helmet which came down over his eyes. The interrogators used this helmet to prevent fatalities, as some prisoners cannot bear the pain of torture and try to kill themselves by bashing their heads against the walls.35

Conditions in the so-called "re-education through labor" camps that convicted prisoners are sent to are even worse. "Re-education" in China means making someone accept communist ideology and be willing to obey the orders of the Communist Party, at no matter what price. The methods employed to that end are totally inhuman:

Prisoners in the camp work on average 10 hours a day at making and carrying bricks, cutting and transporting stones, and agricultural work. They are punished severely if they do not go to bed or get up on time, if they talk to each other, if they sing songs or shout, laugh or cry, if they secretly take water to wash themselves for prayer, if they do not finish their allotted tasks, or if they answer back to the police or guards. The punishments include being hit on the head, stomach and crutch with electric batons; being made to lie down and having their hand trodden on; being made to stand in the "flying aeroplane" position; being strapped to a pole and beaten, and being hung from the ceiling and beaten. On several occasions, police officers inserted an electric baton into a prisoner's anus. Many prisoners have lost their teeth, have bleeding ears, broken arms, infected and useless testicles due to torture. They are frequently insulted and humiliated by the guards. At mealtime, they have to sing songs of praise in Chinese, failing which they reportedly go without food. The camp has no doctor. Prisoners who are sick have to work or are given no food, and only those who are incontinent are taken to the hospital 36 kilometers away. Some have died on the way to hospital.36

China's policy in East Turkestan is a program of mass torture and genocide. According to information from the East Turkestan Information Center, some 10,000 Uighur Turks were arrested on trumped up charges between the beginning of 1999 and March of that same year, detained under the sort of conditions we have seen above, and sentenced to stiff punishment, especially the death penalty, by courts operating under the control of the Communist Party. The number of people sentenced to death by courts in East Turkestan or who died as the result of torture between the beginning of 1999 and March, 2000, is estimated to be 2,500.37

In the genocide campaign being waged by the Chinese government in East Turkestan, even children are detained on various charges. For instance, on October, 30, 1999, the Hotan Municipal Security Directorate arrested a Turkish girl, a middle school student, on the grounds that her writing resembled that of a poster that had been put up in the street. During a speech made by Regional General Secretary Wang Le Chuan in Hotan, which was closed to the press, he announced that a primary school student had been arrested because he had torn the picture of Chairman Mao on the cover of his school book.38

Milli Gazete, 14.8.01

Foreign publications such as Amnesty International Briefing and Crescent International describe in great detail the oppression and cruelty faced by Muslims in occupied East Turkestan.
Hundreds of Muslims are killed in organized executions. Thousands more are still in prison, awaiting execution.


The name of Mao Tse Tung is remembered today for cruelty and brutality. He had unimaginable tortures inflicted on, not just the people of East Turkestan, but on his own people as well. The actions of the Red Guards under Mao's instructions during the barbaric period known as the Cultural Revolution in particular, were crimes against humanity. The following are just a few of them:

(Top) The Red Guards ruthlessly killed anyone they regarded as an enemy of the regime. The picture shows prisoners killed by the riverbank after the capture of Beijing.(Bottom) Farmers whose lands were taken away were tried by Mao's militants in "People's Courts" and then ruthlessly killed.

To put those special handcuffs tightly on the wrists of a prisoner was a form of torture commonly used in Maoist China's prison system. Sometimes additional chains were put around the ankles of the prisoners. At other times a prisoner might be manacled and then have his handcuffs tied to a bar on the window so that he could not move away from the window to eat, drink, or go to the toilet. The purpose was to degrade a man in order to destroy his morale. Since the People's Government claimed to have abolished all forms of torture, the officials simply called such methods "punishment"' or "persuasion." a

The whole people were invited to public trials of "counterrevolutionaries," who almost invariably were condemned to death. Everyone participated in the executions, shouting out "kill, kill" to the Red Guards whose task it was to cut victims into pieces. Sometimes the pieces were cooked and eaten, or force-fed to members of the victim's family who were still alive and looking on. b

In The Black Book of Communism an observer described the inhuman treatment meted out to university professors detained during the days of Mao:

Hanging from their necks were pails filled with rocks. I saw the principal: the pail around his neck was so heavy that the wire had cut deep into his neck and he was staggering. All were barefoot, hitting broken gongs or pots as they walked around the field crying out: "I am black gangster so-and-so." Finally, they all knelt down, burned incense, and begged Mao Zedong to "pardon their crimes.". A few girls nearly fainted. Beatings and torture followed. I had never seen such tortures before: eating nightsoil and insects, being subjected to electric shocks, being forced to kneel on broken glass, being hanged "like an airplane" by the arms and legs. c

The same book also mentions the prisons:

The most varied and sadistic tortures were quite common, such as hanging by the wrists or thumbs.. The most brutish people were allowed to operate with impunity. One camp commander assassinated or buried alive 1,320 people in one year, in addition to carrying out numerous rapes. d

a. Nien Cheng, Life and Death in Shanghai, Macdonald, London, 1986, pp.224-226, cited in The Black Book of Communism, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1999, p.509. (emphasis added)
b. Ibid., p.470-471. (emphasis added)
c. Ken Ling, Miriam London and Lee Tai-Ling, Red Guard:From Schoolboy to "Little General" in Mao's China, Macdonald, London, 1972, pp. 18-21. cited in The Black Book of Communism, p. 525. (emphasis added)
d. Ibid, p.482. (emphasis added)


The laogai in China are the equivalent of Hitler's concentration camps and Stalin's gulags. The laogai system is intended to totally dominate people's thoughts, and turn them into slaves. It is one of the Chinese state's most important control mechanisms. So far some 20 million people have lost their lives in these camps. The aim behind these camps is "re-education" by means of forced labor. One of the most frequently employed slogans is "Forced labor is a means, and a revolution in thought the end." To put it more clearly, the intention behind the laogai is to use all possible means to oblige those who are seen as a potential threat to conform to the Communist Party's wishes. That in turn means humiliation, oppression, enslavement and torture.

These camps are often concealed by using other names for them, and may look like factories, mines or farms to fit the name. An article in The Washington Post described one of these camps, "Hunan Special Electric Machine Factory," or "Hunan Province No. 1 Prison," in which 2-3,000 prisoners are forced to work for an average of 16 hours a day. The factory used to make industrial generators, but now produces various goods such as wigs, medicine boxes, gloves, and Christmas lights.40

Laogai camps are actually intended to punish prisoners, and inmates are exploited by being forced to work under very harsh conditions. The inmates of laogai camps have no rights. They are made to work in state factories, mines, and farms, and to abide by the rules. An individual is kept in these camps until the authorities decide he has been completely reformed (in other words, torture and cruelty are applied until he is molded and obedient to the Communist Party's wishes.) That can sometimes take a whole lifetime, as even if a prisoner has served his entire sentence, he is still kept in the camp to carry out other tasks until the administration decides he has reformed. It is known that, as of 1997, there were more than 1,000 laogai camps in China as a whole, with 8-10 million inmates.41

Millions of people have died in the Chinese concentration camps known as laogai. Even the few books that have described what goes on in these camps are sufficient to reveal the ruthlessness of the communist regime.

The income from what the prisoners produce forms an important part of the Chinese budget. One study in 1999 revealed that 99 laogai camps recorded annual sales figures of 842.7 million dollars.42 In other words, a great many of those people all over the world who use goods made in China are actually using products made by forced labor in Red Chinese state camps. For example, China is one of the world's major tea producers and one-third of the tea it exports comes from laogai camps. The worker slaves in those camps produce 120 different varieties of tea, and are punished if their products are not up to a sufficiently high standard.43

Hitler's concentration camps and Stalin's gulags were replaced in China by the laogai. Most of the people in them were supporters of democracy and human rights, and were accused of opposing the regime. The aim was to mould these people into the shape the communist regime wanted. To that end, prisoners are forced to work 10-16 hours a day in the most terrible conditions, and were humiliated and tortured.

In fact, one of communist ideology's fundamental principles, the idea that "people are only important so long as they are productive, and the important thing is to increase production," also applies in the laogai. In the view of the Chinese Communist Party, human beings are the most important means of production, and everyone must serve as vehicles of that production. Violence is, in turn, the most effective way of raising production. Harry Wu, who spent 19 years in the laogai, now claims asylum in the United States. He has since used the Laogai Association he founded as a means of fighting the human rights violations in China. Wu calculates that the laogai make a profit of some 100 million dollars a year, a figure that has been accepted in official statements from Beijing.44

As we have seen, the laogai are not simply a prison system, but rather an important political tool for the survival of the Communist Party. Mao expressed this in these words:

Marxism holds that the state is a machine of violence for one class to rule another. Laogai facilities are one of the violence components of the state machine. They are tools representing the interests of the proletariat and the people's masses and exercising dictatorship over a minority of hostile elements originating from the exploiter classes.45

No matter how much the Chinese government attempts to conceal the true nature of these camps, those people who have spent many years in them, and then found asylum abroad, keep telling the world about what goes on in the laogai. One of these is Jean Pasqualini who spent many years in a laogai. He claims that the laogai is not an institution, as has been claimed, but rather a system of torture. He describes how the most inhuman things possible go on in these camps. Pasqualini claims deceptive language is employed by Red China when discussing the laogai or the punishment of prisoners. In his view:

Prisoners in China are still compelled to work, to "reconstruct socialism with their two hands," in order to "reform themselves," to be "born once again," to become "new men." Slave laborers in "Laogai" brigades not only work hard under inhumane conditions merely to purge their crimes but also to "expiate for their sins." The Chinese penal system has a very peculiar vocabulary: nearly every inhumane terminology has a human correlation. One is never "punished," one "undergoes reform." Prisons are often called "schools" where one serves time by "studying and learning" and "reforming oneself." A prisoner never gets beaten, he is "given a lesson." He never gets insulted, he just gets "criticized." And the jail authorities lose no time to let you know that "criticism is proof that the government is concerned about you. Without criticism there can be no progress!" Informers are those who help the government (that is, the warders) to do its work well. They also "help" prisoners to "recognize their mistakes." The word "help" is considered the most frightful term in the prison vocabulary by the prisoners! Prisoners don't spy on each other, they just engage in "mutual supervision." Prisoners who have served out their time are said to have graduated or "have gone back to society," "to have obtained a new lease on life" or to have "once again joined the ranks of the people".46

A news report headed "Work and be silent" in the French magazine Le Courrier International revealed the full details of the repressive nature of the camps. The report spoke of minors under age 18 being forced to work without pay and locked in cells like stables at night. The article described how the Guangdong camps in particular were no better than the concentration camps of World War II, and concluded: "It is a truly terrible situation. These people are in an awful position in which it is difficult even to survive."

This deceptive terminology employed by the Chinese communists was described in George Orwell's 1984, and recalls the Ministry of Love, whose true purpose was to inflict suffering. This false terminology employed by communist totalitarianism can be seen in all areas of life. Jean Pasqualini discusses that peculiar terminology:

The dictatorship of the proletariat has now given way to the "People's Democratic Dictatorship." As if a dictatorship can be democratic. Or democracy can tolerate a dictatorship. One has to be one or the other. Not both! The terminology has changed, but its purpose remains the same. The terrible famine of early '60s that claimed 20 million lives was for a long time officially known as the "three years of temporary economic difficulties (or hardship)." Not a single word about the victims of the consequences of the Great Leap Forward which continued to be extolled during the catastrophic period. On the contrary, the situation then was described as being "good and great."47


Under the pretext of medical aid, benefiting the sick, and research, for years the Red Chinese administration has sold the internal organs of people condemned to death in order to provide itself with income. In fact, victims' organs are sold for high profit. After people have been executed, the state makes an average 10-15,000 dollars profit out of each usable organ. Under the law "On the Use of Executed Prisoners' Corpses or Organs" issues in the '70s, the use of such organs was legalized. If a prisoner has no family, or if he or they have given permission for his organs to be used after death, those organs are removed and sold after sentence has been carried out.

That might seem quite acceptable, but one can see how unjust this policy actually is when the prevailing conditions in China are considered.

Thousands of people are executed every year in communist China. The bodies are then skinned and their kidneys removed. Once the organs have been removed, the bodies are then regarded as waste products, bagged up, and thrown onto a rubbish heap.

As we have already seen, human life is probably the cheapest thing of all in China, and an average of 300 people a month are executed. The great majority of those who are executed have nobody to look out for their interests because families are often not told where prisoners are kept. They only learn their relatives have been killed after the event. Most of the time the families of those killed hesitate to ask for the body out of fear of retaliation. This then justifies the extraction of internal organs from almost all victims' bodies. Harry Wu describes this fact with an example from his own life:

It is universally known that Mainland China is a society closely controlled by the communist party. In the People's Republic of China, as soon as one is labeled by the Beijing government as a "class enemy" or a "counterrevolutionary," almost all relatives keep aloof from him/her, or accuse and cast him/her aside. During my long nineteen years in the Laogai camp systems practically no relatives came to see me. I strongly believe that should I have been executed then, my body would have fallen under the category "nobody claims or family refuses to claim the body" and could have been "used" by the government for a profit.48

What is more, even if families do hear about an execution, the Red Chinese government feels no great need to secure their permission. In one way or another, it will prevail upon them to donate their relative's organs. In 1997, in New York, one Chinese physician described how the internal organs of those condemned to death are removed without permission by the Chinese authorities:

Harry Wu

Before Wu Hongda (Harry Wu) testified [in the United States], there was nothing like "consent," but now [the Chinese government] has certain formalities, and prisoners must go through the formalities willy-nilly, so when foreigners ask about this, we have something to tell them. Please don't worry!49

Harry Wu quoted a hospital cadre who had many times extracted organs at execution sites as saying, "A shot in [his] head, blow away his brain, and the guy is brain-dead. [He] has no more thinking, ceases to be a human being, just a thing, and we use the waste,"50 revealing the attitude of the Chinese government. That is, killing prisoners is perfectly acceptable, and their bodies can be used for spare parts.

These organs are then sold by the state to hospitals abroad at extortionate prices. In fact, doctors in China advise patients from abroad to wait for the public execution season. Once organs have been removed from prisoners' bodies, the communist state says nothing about how and why they will be used. As always, Communist Party officials enjoy the highest priority. Then come foreign citizens or Chinese citizens living abroad. The local population can also make use of these organs only if they have the money to do so. Those with the very least access to these organs are the ordinary poor of society, no matter how great their need. That means the system is not for the benefit of humanity, but merely works to benefit Communist Party administrators and the elite. Most of the time the system goes ahead by stealing the organs of innocent people killed for having different beliefs or ideas than the party.

Dr. Wang Guoqi

Research has shown that some 20,000 kidney transplants were carried out in China between the early 1970s and the middle of 1995. In its 1996 report, Amnesty International said that the organs of 90 percent of people executed were removed. In its June 27, 2001, edition The Washington Post printed claims by a doctor involved in the organ trade, which underlined how widespread this trade was in China.

According to the story, burn specialist Wang Guoqi, participated in more than 100 operations during which organs were removed from the bodies of dead prisoners. Guoqi helped to collect prisoners' skin and corneas, and witnessed how organs were sold for enormous prices at the Tianjin Paramilitary Police General Brigade Hospital where he worked. Dr. Guoqi provided the time and date of the executions, the names of the doctors who took part in the operations, and the medical procedures involved and described in considerable detail how, after being killed, the prisoners would immediately be loaded onto ambulances and their organs removed. The bodies were later taken to the crematorium, where Dr. Guoqi and other doctors would strip off the corpses' skin. Dr. Guoqi explains that:

After all extractable tissues and organs were taken, what remained was an ugly heap of muscles, the blood vessels still bleeding, or all viscera exposed. Then the corpse was handed to the workers at the crematorium.51

Even worse, Chinese officials did not always wait for the prisoner to die before removing organs. One incident experienced by Dr. Guoqi illustrates this. An officer shot a prisoner, and although he was still alive, the doctors were ordered to take to the ambulance. As urologists immediately began removing his kidneys, and Guoqi and the other burn surgeons harvested the skin. They then placed the remains of the half dead prisoner in a plastic bag and threw him onto a rubbish heap.52

Milli Gazete, 26.6.01
THEY MADE ME SKIN THE BODIES OF EXECUTED PRISONERS" The terrifying confession of a Chinese doctor in exile in the USA
Milliyet, 28.6.01

To the left can be seen an article that appeared in The Observer called "China sells organs of slain convicts." The story reported that the organs were generally sold to rich patients from abroad. Based on a number of sources, the price of a kidney is in the region of $10,000. The fact that thousands of people are executed in China every year helps to show why the Chinese government is so insistent on continuing the organ trade.


25. The Independent, October 20, 1988
26. Micheal Hoffman, "World Forgets Beijing's Uighur Victims," Mainichi Daily News, June 29, 2000
27. Killing By Quota, Killing for Profit: Executions and Transplants in China, Laogai Research Foundation, (emphasis added)
28. Killing by Quota, Killing for Profit: Executions anda Transplants in China, Laogai Research Foundation, (emphasis added)
29. Angus Roxburgh, "How Russia Faced Its Dark Past," BBC News Online; (emphasis added)
30. Undisguised Killing: Public Executions in China, Laogai Research Foundation Special Report, (emphasis added)
31. Undisguised Killing: Public Executions in China, Laogai Research Foundation Special Report,
32. Myriam Marquez, "Let's See Beijing's Butchers Are Really Good Sports," Orlando Sentinel, July 16, 2001
33. Gross Violations of Human Rights in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, Amnesty International Report, April 1, 1999
34. Gross Violations of Human Rights in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, Amnesty International Report, April 1, 1999 (emphasis added)
35. Gross Violations of Human Rights in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, Amnesty International Report, April 1, 1999 (emphasis added)
36. Gross Violations of Human Rights in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, Amnesty International Report, April 1, 1999 (emphasis added)
37. Dogu Turkistan 1999 Insan Haklari Ihlalleri Raporu (East Turkestan 1999 Human Rights Violations Report),
38. Dogu Turkistan 1999 Insan Haklari Ihlalleri Raporu (East Turkestan 1999 Human Rights Violations Report),
39. Nova Magazine, April 1997
40. John Chan, "Prisoners Die in Chinese Mines: An Indictment of 'Reform Through Labour'," WSWS (World Socialist Website), June 20, 2001
41. Libération, January 28, 1997
42. John Chan, "Prisoners Die in Chinese Mines: An Indictment of 'Reform Through Labour'," WSWS (World Socialist Website), June 20, 2001
43. Libération, January 28, 1997
44. Harry Wu, La Voix du Tibet, 04.1997
45. Harry Wu, "China's Gulag Suppressing Dissent Through Laogai," Harvard International Review, Winter 1997/1998 (emphasis added)
46. Jean Pasqualini, "Beijing's Old Trick," Laogai Research Foundation,
47. Jean Pasqualini, "Beijing's Old Trick," Laogai Research Foundation,
48. Testimony of Harry Wu On Organ Trafficking By Chinese Communist Government, Laogai Research Foundation,
49. Testimony of Harry Wu On Organ Trafficking By Chinese Communist Government, Laogai Research Foundation,
50. Testimony of Harry Wu On Organ Trafficking By Chinese Communist Government, Laogai Research Foundation,
51. Steven Mufson, "Chinese Doctor Tells of Organ Removals After Executions," The Washington Post, June 27, 2001
52. Steven Mufson, "Chinese Doctor Tells of Organ Removals After Executions," The Washington Post, June 27, 2001