China condemns us bill against Uighur camps

China condemns us bill against Uighur camps

China has condemned a US bill demanding the closure of so-called "re-education" camps for Uighurs.

The US legislation - still to be passed by the Senate - also threatens sanctions against Communist Party officials blamed for abuses.

More than a million of the Muslim minority are imprisoned as part of a long-running government crackdown in the northwestern region of Xinjiang.

China reacted angrily after the US House of Representatives passed a bill requiring the Trump administration to toughen its response to Xinjiang, where the more than one million Muslims, mostly ethnic Uighurs, are being held in "re-education" camps.

In a statement released shortly after the Uighur Act of 2019 was passed, China's foreign ministry on Wednesday condemned the move saying the bill "wantonly smears China's efforts to eliminate and combat extremism"

The United States' lower house voted to back the bill 407 to one in a vote on Tuesday. It still has to be approved by the Senate before it can be sent to President Donald Trump.

The White House has yet to say whether Trump would sign or veto it. The Uighur Act of 2019 is a stronger version of a bill that angered Beijing when it passed the Senate in September and calls on Trump to impose sanctions for the first time on a member of China's powerful politburo, even as he attempts to reach a deal with Beijing to end a damaging trade war.

The bill requires the US president to condemn abuses against Muslims and call for the closure of the camps in the country's far western region.

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