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Xinjiang (2012), including the disputed Aksai Chin region
Xinjiang's location in the People's Republic of China

The recorded history of Xinjiang (新疆) dates to at least the 2nd millennium BC. There have been many empires, primarily Han Chinese, Turkic, and Mongol, that have ruled over the region, including (in chronological order) the Yuezhi, Xiongnu, Han dynasty, Gaochang, Kingdom of Khotan, Sixteen Kingdoms of the Jin dynasty (Former Liang, Former Qin, Later Liang, and Western Liang), Turkic Khaganate, Tang dynasty, Tibetan Empire, Uyghur Khaganate, Kara-Khanid Khanate, Kingdom of Qocho, Qara Khitai, Mongol Empire, Yuan dynasty, Chagatai Khanate, Yarkent Khanate, Dzungar Khanate, and Qing dynasty.

Xinjiang was first referred to as "Xiyu" (Chinese: 西域) under the Han dynasty, which drove the Xiongnu out of the region in 60 BCE (Han–Xiongnu War) in an effort to build and secure the profitable Silk Road.[1] It was renamed Xinjiang (新疆, meaning "new frontier") when the region was reconquered by the Manchu-led Qing dynasty in 1759. Xinjiang is now a part of the People's Republic of China, having been so since its founding year of 1949.

Contents

BackgroundEdit

 
Dzungaria (Red) and the Tarim Basin (Blue)
 
Northern Xinjiang (Dzungar Basin) (Yellow), Eastern Xinjiang, Turpan Depression (Turpan Prefecture and Hami Prefecture) (Red), and the Tarim Basin (Blue)
 
Physical map showing the separation of Dzungaria and the Tarim Basin (Taklamakan) by the Tian Shan Mountains

Xinjiang consists of two main geographically, historically, and ethnically distinct regions with different historical names: Dzungaria north of the Tianshan Mountains and the Tarim Basin south of the Tianshan Mountains. In 1884 Qing China unified them into one political entity called Xinjiang province. At the time of the Qing conquest in 1759, Dzungaria was inhabited by steppe dwelling, nomadic Tibetan Buddhist Oirat Mongol Dzungar people, while the Tarim Basin was inhabited by sedentary, oasis dwelling, Turkic speaking Muslim farmers, now known as the Uyghur people. They were governed separately until 1884.

The Qing dynasty was well aware of the differences between the former Buddhist Mongol area to the north of the Tianshan and Turkic Muslim south of the Tianshan, and ruled them in separate administrative units at first.[2] However, Qing people began to think of both areas as part of one distinct region called Xinjiang.[3] The very concept of Xinjiang as one distinct geographic identity was created by the Qing, and it was originally not the native inhabitants who viewed it that way.[4] During Qing rule, there was not much sense of "regional identity" held by ordinary Xinjiang people. Rather, Xinjiang's distinct identity was given by the Qing. It had distinct geography, history, and culture, while at the same was still Chinese territory, settled by Han and Hui, distinct from the rest of Central Asia, and largely multicultural.[5]

In the late 19th century, there was a proposal to restore the old administration of Xinjiang into two provinces, the areas north and south of Tianshan. It was never adopted.[6]

EtymologyEdit

In ancient China, the area was known as "Xiyu" or "Western Regions", a name that became prevalent in Chinese records after the Han Dynasty took control of the region.[1][7] It soon was traversed by the Northern Silk Road.[8]

For the Uyghurs, the traditional name of the Tarim Basin in southern Xinjiang was Altishahr, which means "six cities" in the Uyghur language. The region of Dzungaria in northern Xinjiang was named after its native inhabitants, the Dzungar Mongols.

The name "East Turkestan" was created by the Russian Sinologist Nikita Bichurin to replace the term "Chinese Turkestan" in 1829.[9] "East Turkestan" was used traditionally to only refer to the Tarim Basin, and not Xinjiang as a whole, with Dzungaria being excluded from the area consisting of "East Turkestan".

After the Qing dynasty reconquered this region in 1884, the area was designated Xinjiang (新疆) or roughly "New border", which was used to refer to any area of former Chinese empires that had been regained by the Qing. Eventually it came to mean this northwestern Xinjiang alone.[10] In the Uyghur language, Xinjiang is considered more central than northwestern in orientation.[11]

Early inhabitantsEdit

Various people have lived in Xinjiang before Han rule.

There was the Ordos culture in northern China east of the Yuezhi, whose excavated skeletal remains have been predominantly Mongoloid. The Shan Hai Jing (山海经) describe the existence of "white people with long hair" or Bai (白), who lived beyond the northwestern border. These are thought to have referred to the Yuezhi people.[12]

There are preserved Tarim mummies some with reddish or blond hair, that have been found in the Tarim Basin, dated to the 2nd millennium BC. Today they are displayed at the Ürümqi Museum. Genetic studies have shown origins from India, Iran, Central Asia, Mesopotamia, and other sources that remain to be identified (see Tarim mummies). Various nomadic tribes, such as the Yuezhi, Saka, and Wusun are conjectured to be part of the migration of either Altaic-group speakers or Indo-European speakers who were settled in Central Asia at that time.

By the time the Han dynasty under Emperor Wu (r. 141–87 BC) defeated the Xiongnu in the Han–Xiongnu War and ceded the Western Regions, it was inhabited by various peoples, including Tocharians (in Turfan and Kucha) and Indo-Iranian Saka peoples around Kashgar and Khotan.[13] See Indo-Aryan migration and Turkic migration.

Lefthand image: The Sampul tapestry, a woolen wall hanging from a tomb at Shanpula (Sampul, now in Lop County), with blue eyes, wielding a spear, and wearing what appears to be a diadem headband; depicted above him is a centaur
Righthand image: Two Buddhist monks on a mural of the Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves near Turpan, Xinjiang, China, 9th century AD; although Albert von Le Coq (1913) assumed the blue-eyed, red-haired monk was a Tocharian,[14] modern scholarship has identified similar Caucasian figures of the same cave temple (No. 9) as ethnic Sogdians,[15] an Eastern Iranian people who inhabited Turfan as an ethnic minority community during the phases of Tang Chinese (7th-8th century) and Uyghur rule (9th-13th century).[16]

Chinese accountsEdit

The first reference to the nomadic Yuezhi was in 645 BC by Guan Zhong in his Guanzi 管子 (Guanzi Essays: 73: 78: 80: 81). He described the Yuzhi 禺氏, or Niuzhi 牛氏, as a people from the north-west who supplied jade to the Chinese from the nearby mountains of Yuzhi 禺氏 at Gansu.[17] The supply of jade from the Tarim Basin from ancient times is well documented archaeologically:[18]

"It is well known that ancient Chinese rulers had a strong attachment to jade. All of the jade items excavated from the tomb of Fuhao of the Shang dynasty by Zheng Zhenxiang, more than 750 pieces, were from Khotan in modern Xinjiang. As early as the mid-first millennium BC the Yuezhi engaged in the jade trade, of which the major consumers were the rulers of agricultural China." (Liu (2001), pp. 267–268).

The nomadic tribes of the Yuezhi are documented in Chinese historical accounts, in particular the 2nd–1st century BC "Records of the Great Historian", or Shiji, by Sima Qian. According to these accounts:[19]

"The Yuezhi originally lived in the area between the Qilian or Heavenly Mountains (Tian Shan) and Dunhuang, but after they were defeated by the Xiongnu they moved far away to the west, beyond Dayuan, where they attacked and conquered the people of Daxia and set up the court of their king on the northern bank of the Gui [Oxus] River. A small number of their people who were unable to make the journey west sought refuge among the Qiang barbarians in the Southern Mountains, where they are known as the Lesser Yuezhi."

According to Han accounts, the Yuezhi "were flourishing" during the time of the first great Chinese Qin emperor, but were regularly in conflict with the neighboring Xiongnu tribe to the northeast.

Genetic evidenceEdit

The analysis of mtDNA haplogroup distribution showed that the aboriginal inhabitants had a large mixture of East Asian, Persian and Indian characteristics.[20][21] According to the study by Chengzhi et al,[20]

We successfully extracted and sequenced intact stretches of maternally inherited mtDNA from 13 out of 16 ancient Sampula samples. The analysis of mtDNA haplogroup distribution showed that the ancient Sampula was a complex population with both European and Asian characteristics. Median joining network of U3 sub-haplogroup and multi-dimensional scaling analysis all showed that the ancient Sampula had maternal relationship with Ossetian and Iranian.

There was a cemetery in Sampul (Shanpula; 山普拉) around 14 km (8.7 mi) from the archaeological site of Hotan in Lop County,[20] where art such as the Sampul tapestry have been found.[22] The local inhabitants buried their dead there from roughly 217 BC to 283 AD.[23]

DNA analysis of the human remains has revealed genetic affinities to peoples from around Iran, specifically a maternal lineage linked to Ossetians and Iranians, as well as a Western Asian paternal lineage.[20][24]

In 2009, the remains of individuals found at the Xiaohe Tomb complex were analyzed for Y-DNA and mtDNA markers. The study found that while Y-DNA and mtDNA haplotypes had an admixture of East Asian and Persian origin.[25] The geographic location of where this admixing took place is suggested to be somewhere in Southern Siberia before these people moved into the Tarim Basin. Xiaohe is the oldest known archaeological site yielding human remains discovered in the Tarim Basin to date.

Other studies show that modern Uyghurs descend from both Turkic Uyghurs and the pre-Turkic Tocharians (Yuezhi), and that relatively fair hair and eyes (i.e. blonde hairs and blue eyes) are not uncommon among Uyghurs either (not exclusively Western Eurasian). Genetic analyses suggest West Eurasian (West Asian and Persian) maternal contribution to Uyghurs is 42.6% and the paternal between 43.9% and 61.2%. The estimation of total Western Asian component in modern Uyghur population ranged from 30 to 60%.[26]

Han dynastyEdit

 
The Han empire (dark orange) under administrative units control during Emperor Wu's reign (r. 141–87 BC), and sphere of influence (light orange)

At the beginning of the Han dynasty (206 BC – AD 220), the region was subservient to the Xiongnu, a powerful nomadic people based in modern Mongolia. In the 2nd century BC, The Han Dynasty made preparations for war when the Emperor Wu of Han dispatched the explorer Zhang Qian 1) to explore the mysterious kingdoms to the west and 2) to form an alliance with the Yuezhi people in order to combat the Xiongnu.

In 102 BC the Han then defeated the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom in the War of the Heavenly Horses. They won enough Ferghana horses to later defeat the Xiongnu in the Han–Xiongnu War by 80 BC. As a result of these battles, the Chinese controlled the strategic region from the Ordos and Gansu corridor to Lop Nor, as well as regions deeper into Central Asia such as modern Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. They succeeded in separating the Xiongnu from the Qiang peoples to the south, and also gained direct access to the Western Regions.

In 60 BC Han China established the Protectorate of the Western Regions (西域都護府) at Wulei (烏壘; near modern Luntai) to oversee the entire region as far west as the Pamir. This became the first sign of Han Chinese rule in Central Asia, the sovereignty of Han dynasty expanded into Central Asia. Tarim Basin and Indo-European kingdoms were annexed by the Han dynasty and influenced by Chinese emperors.

During the usurpation of Wang Mang in China, the dependent states of the protectorate rebelled and briefly returned to Xiongnu domination in AD 13. Over the next century, Han China conducted several expeditions into the region, re-establishing the protectorate from 74-76, 91-107, and from 123 onward. After the fall of the Han dynasty (220), the protectorate continued to be maintained by Cao Wei (until 265), the Western Jin Dynasty (from 265 onwards), and then once again by the Tang dynasty.

Uyghur nationalist historians such as Turghun Almas claim that Uyghurs were distinct and independent from Chinese for 6000 years, and that all non-Uyghur peoples are non-indigenous immigrants to Xinjiang.[27] However, the Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) established military colonies (tuntian) and commanderies (duhufu) to control Xinjiang from 120 BC, while the Tang dynasty (618–907) also controlled much of Xinjiang until the An Lushan rebellion.[28] Chinese historians refute Uyghur nationalist claims by pointing out the 2,000-year history of Han settlement in Xinjiang, documenting the history of Mongol, Kazakh, Uzbek, Manchu, Hui, Xibo indigenes in Xinjiang, and by emphasizing the relatively late "westward migration" of the Huigu (equated with "Uyghur" by the PRC government) people from Mongolia the 9th century.[27] The name "Uyghur" originally was associated with a Buddhist people in the Tarim Basin in the 9th century, but completely disappeared by the 15th century, until it was revived by the Soviet Union in the 20th century.[29]

Jin dynastyEdit

 
A Buddha statue from Tumshuq, Xinjiang. 5th century. An example of Serindian art.

The Western Jin Dynasty succumbed to successive waves of invasions by nomads from the north at the beginning of the 4th century. The short-lived kingdoms that ruled northwestern China one after the other, including Former Liang, Former Qin, Later Liang, and Western Liáng, all attempted to maintain the protectorate, with varying extents and degrees of success. After the final reunification of northern China under the Northern Wei empire, its protectorate controlled what is now the southeastern third of Xinjiang. Local states such as Kashgar (Shule Kingdom), Hotan (Yutian), Kucha (Guizi) and Cherchen (Qiemo) controlled the western half, while the central region around Turpan was controlled by Gaochang (later known as Qara-hoja), remnants of a Xiongnu state Northern Liang that once ruled part of what is now Gansu province in northwestern China.

Gokturk KhaganateEdit

In the late 5th century the Tuyuhun and the Rouran asserted power in southern and northern Xinjiang, respectively, and the Chinese protectorate was briefly lost. In the 6th century the Turks began to emerge in the Altay region, subservient to the Rouran. Within a century they had defeated the Rouran and established a vast Turkic Khaganate, stretching over most of Central Asia past both the Aral Sea in the west and Lake Baikal in the east. In 583 the Gokturks split into western and eastern halves, with Xinjiang coming under the western half. In 609, China under the Sui Dynasty defeated the Tuyuhun, forced him to take refuge in Qilian mountains.

Tang dynastyEdit

 
Map of the Tang military expeditions against the oasis states of southern Xinjiang

Starting from the 620's and 630's, the Tang dynasty conducted a series of expeditions against the Eastern Turks.[30] By 640, military campaigns were dispatched against the Western Turkic Khaganate, and their vassals, the oasis states of southern Xinjiang.[31] The campaigns against the oasis states began under Emperor Taizong with the annexation of Gaochang in 640.[32] The nearby kingdom of Karasahr was captured by the Tang in 644 and the kingdom of Kucha was conquered in 649.[33]

The expansion into Central Asia continued under Taizong's successor, Emperor Gaozong, who dispatched an army in 657 led by Su Dingfang against the Western Turk qaghan Ashina Helu. Ashina's defeat strengthened Tang rule in southern Xinjiang and brought the regions formerly controlled by the khaganate into the Tang empire.[33] The military expedition included 10,000 horsemen supplied by the Uyghurs, who were close allies of the Tang.[33] The Uyghurs had allied with the Tang ever since the dynasty supported their revolt against the reign of the Xueyantuo, a tribe of Tiele people.[34] Xinjiang was administered through the Anxi Protectorate (安西都護府; "Protectorate Pacifying the West") and the Four Garrisons of Anxi.

Tang hegemony beyond the Pamir Mountains in modern Tajikistan and Afghanistan ended with revolts by the Turks, but the Tang retained a military presence in Xinjiang. These holdings were later invaded by the Tibetan Empire to the south, and Xinjiang alternated between Tang and Tibetan rule as they competed for control of Central Asia.[35] In 662 a rebellion broke out and Tang army was sent to control the situation, but was defeated by the Tibetans south of Kashgar. After defeating the Tang in 670, the Tibetans subjugated Kashgar in 676-678 and retained possession until 692, when China regained control of all southern Xinjiang, and retained it for the next fifty years. In 728, the local king of Kashgar was awarded a brevet by the Tang emperor. During the devastating Anshi Rebellion, Tibetans invaded Tang China on a wide front from Xinjiang to Yunnan, sacking the Tang capital Chang'an in 763, and taking control of southern Xinjiang.

In the Battle of Talas (c 750) the Tang lost to the Abbasid Caliphate, which ended further Tang expansion west of Central Asia.

A significant milestone of the Tang period of Xinjiang was that it marked the end of Indo-European influence in Xinjiang.[32] This was partially spurred by Chinese policies, which unintentionally sped the Turkification of Xinjiang,[35] rather than the Sinification that had occurred in other territories conquered by the Tang.[36] The Tang dynasty recruited a large number of Turkic soldiers and generals, and the Chinese garrisons of Xinjiang were for the most part staffed by Turks rather than those of the Han ethnicity. Xinjiang began its transition into a linguistically and culturally Turko-Mongolic region, which continues today.[35]

Uyghur KhanateEdit

 
Asia in AD 800, showing the Uyghur Khanate and its neighbors.

By 745 the Uyghur Khanate stretched from the Caspian Sea to present-day Mongolia and lasted from 745 to 840. After the Battle of Talas in 751, the Uyghur Khanate took control of northern Xinjiang, as well as much of Central Asia, including Outer Mongolia, where their empire originated. During this time the Tang started to withdraw from Central Asia. Bayanchur Khan acted quickly and took over the fertile Tarim Basin at about the same time that the Tibetan Empire extended to Xinjiang.[37]

The Chinese defeat at the Battle of Talas combined with a series of rebellions, the largest being of An Lushan, forced the Chinese emperor to turn to Bayanchur Khan for assistance. Seeing this as an ideal opportunity to meddle in Chinese affairs, the Khagan agreed, quelling several rebellions and defeating an invading Tibetan army from the south. As a result, the Uyghurs received tribute from the Chinese and Bayanchur Khan was married to the daughter of the Tang Emperor (Princess Ningo).

In 762, in alliance with the Tang, Tengri Bögü (Chinese transcription Idigan) launched a campaign against the Tibetans. He recaptured for the Tang Emperor the western capital Luoyang. Khagan Tengri Bögü met with Manichaean priests from Persia while on campaign, and was converted to Manicheism, adopting it as the official religion of the Uyghur Empire.

In 779 Tengri Bögü, incited by Sogdian traders, living in Ordu Baliq, planned an invasion of China to take advantage of the accession of a new emperor. Tengri Bögü's uncle, Tun Bagha Tarkhan opposed this plan, fearing it would result in Uyghur complete assimilation into Han-Chinese culture.

In 840, the Kyrgyz tribe invaded from the north with a force of around 80,000 horsemen. They sacked the Uyghur capital at Ordu Baliq, razing it to the ground. The Kyrgyz captured the Uyghur Khagan, Kürebir (Hesa) and promptly beheaded him. The Kyrgyz went on to destroy other Uyghur cities throughout their empire, burning them to the ground. The last legitimate khagan, Öge, was assassinated in 847, having spent his 6-year reign in fighting the Kyrgyz and the supporters of his rival Ormïzt, a brother of Kürebir. The Kyrgyz invasion destroyed the Uyghur Empire, causing a diaspora of Uyghur people across Central Asia.

Islamization by Kara-KhanidsEdit

Both Tibet and the Uyghur Khanate declined in the mid-9th century. There were three main regional kingdoms that vied for power around Xinjiang: the Buddhist Uyghur Kara-Khoja, the Turkic Muslim Kara-Khanid, and the Persian Buddhist Khotan. In a series of wars, the Karakhanid eventually wiped out Khotan. This resulted in the large-scale Islamization and Turkification of Xinjiang, whose effects remain to this day.

The Turkic Qarakhanid and Uyghur Qocho Kingdoms were both states founded by invaders while the native populations of the region were Iranian, Tocharian, Chinese (Qocho), and Indian. They married and mixed with the Turkic invaders.

Kara-KhojaEdit

In 840, after the Uyghur Khanate in Mongolia had been smashed by the Kirghiz, the Uyghurs immigrated to Qocha (Karakhoja) and Beshbalik near today's Turpan and Urumqi. They formed the Kara-Khoja Kingdom, which remained in eastern Xinjiang until the 14th century, though it was subject various overlords during that time, including the Karakhanid. The Uyghur state in eastern Xinjiang was initially Manicheaean, but later converted to Buddhism.

 
Eurasia on the eve of the Mongol invasions, c. 1200

First Uyghur migrations into the Tarim BasinEdit

Analysis of Tarim mummies suggest that Turkic-speaking Uighur only began migrating to the region by the 10th century (842 CE) from Central Asia.[38]

Studies by US geneticists show that East Asians arrived 3,000 years ago.[39]

Protected by the Taklamakan Desert from steppe nomads, elements of Tocharian culture survived until the 7th century, when Turkic immigrants from the collapsing Uyghur Khaganate of modern-day Mongolia began to absorb the Tocharians to form the modern-day Uyghur ethnic group.[39]

Mongoloid DNAEdit

The modern Uyghurs are now a mixed hybrid of East Eurasian and West Eurasian.[40][41][42]

Images of Buddhist and Manichean UyghursEdit

James A. Millward described the original Uyghurs as physically Mongoloid, giving as an example the images in Bezeklik at temple 9 of the Uyghur patrons, until they began to mix with the Tarim Basin's eastern Iranian inhabitants.[43]

Images of Buddhist and Manichean Turkic Uyghurs from the Bezeklik caves and Mogao grottoes. Buddhist murals at the Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves were damaged by local Muslim population whose religion proscribed figurative images of sentient beings, the eyes and mouths in particular were often gouged out. Pieces of murals were also broken off for use as fertilizer by the locals.[44]

KhotanEdit

 
A male figure with wings, from the mural paintings signed Tita in the Loulan Kingdom site of Miran (Xinjiang), dated 3rd century AD

Iranian Saka peoples originally inhabited Yarkand and Kashgar in ancient times. They formed a Buddhist kingdom called Khotan. After the fall of Kasghar to Karakhanid, Khotan was the only city-state that was not conquered yet by the Turkic Uyghur (Buddhist) and the Turkic Karakhanid (Muslim) states. Its ruling family used Indian names and the population were devout Buddhists. The Buddhist entitles of Dunhuang and Khotan had a tight-knit partnership, with intermarriage between Dunhuang and Khotan's rulers and Dunhuang's Mogao grottos and Buddhist temple funded and sponsored by the Khotan royals, depicted in the Mogao grottoes.[45] In the Mogao caves, the rulers of Khotan hired artists to paint divine figures alongside the Khotans to give them strength against their Turkic rivals.

Kara-KhanidEdit

Around the 9th century another kingdom called the Kara-Khanid Khanate rose from a confederation of Turkic tribes living in Semirechye, Western Tian Shan (modern Kyrgyzstan), and Western Xinjiang (Kashgaria).[46] They later occupied Transoxania. The Karakhanids were made up mainly of the Karluks, Chigils and Yaghma tribes. The capital of Karakhanid Khanate was Balasaghun on the Chu River and then later Samarkand and Kashgar.

The Kara-Khanids converted to Islam. Their administrative language was Middle Chinese, though Persian, Arabic, and Turkic were also spoken

Jihad against the Iranian Buddhists of KhotanEdit

In 966, Sultan Satuq Bughra Khan converted to Islam after contacts with the Muslim Samanid Empire.

He then launched Karakhanid invasions of Khotan cities east of Kashgar. Many tales emerged about the Kara-Khanid ruling family's war against the Buddhists and how Satok's nephew or grandson Ali Arslan was slain by the Khotan Buddhists during the war. Buddhism lost territory to Islam during the Karakhanid reign around the Kashgar area.[47]

Halfway in the 10th century Karakhanid ruler Musa again attacked Khotan. The Karakhanid general Yusuf Qadir Khan finally conquered Khotan around 1006, thereby beginning the Turkification and Islamicization of the region.[45][48]

After Yusuf's conquest of Altishahr, he adopted the title "King of the East and China".[49]

Bughra Khan was overthrown by his nephew Satuq. The Arslan Khans were also toppled and Balasaghun taken by Satuq, with the conversion of the Qarakhanid Turk population to Islam following Satuq's accession to power. With the spread of Islam the Qarakhanid Turks conquered Transoxiana from the Arabs and the Samanids from the Persians.[50]

Art and literature depicting the Muslim victoryEdit

The geography book Ḥudūd al-ʿĀlam (written in Persian) contained anti-Buddhist rhetoric and polemic aimed at "dehumanizing" the Khotanese.[51] The Muslims Kara-Khanids conquered Khotan just 26 years following the completion of Ḥudūd al-ʿĀlam.[52]

The Taẕkirah is a genre of literature written about Sufi Muslim saints in Altishahr. Written around 1700–1849 in modern Uyghur, the Taẕkirah of the Four Sacrificed Imams provides an account of the war, including a story about Imams from Mada'in (Iraq) came 4 Imams who travelled to help Yusuf in his conquest of Khotan, Yarkand, and Kashgar.[49]

It is full of graphic descriptions such as "blood flows like the Oxus" and "heads litter the battlefield like stones". There are also murals of Muslims gouging the eyes of Buddhist inside Silk Road caves. Kashgari recorded in his Turkic dictionary an anti-Buddhist poem and folk song.[53] These describe the genocide and murderous battles waged by the Kara-khinads against the Buddhists.

The war was described as a Jihad (holy war) by Turkologist Professor Takao Moriyasu. The Karakhanid Turkic Muslim writer Mahmud al-Kashgari recorded a short Turkic language poem about the conquest.

English translation:[52][53][54][55][56]

We came down on them like a flood,
We went out among their cities,
We tore down the idol-temples,
We shat on the Buddha's head!

Turkic:[57]

kälginläyü aqtïmïz
kändlär üzä čïqtïmïz
furxan ävin yïqtïmïz
burxan üzä sïčtïmïz

Idols of "infidels" were subjected to desecration by being defecated upon by the Muslim invaders when the "infidel" country was conquered.[57]

Islamization of XinjiangEdit

Satuq Bughra Khan and his son directed endeavors to proselytize Islam among the Turks and engage in military conquests.[58] The Islamic conquest of Khotan led to alarm in the east. Dunhuang's Cave 17, which contained Khotanese literary works, was shut possibly after its caretakers heard that Khotan's Buddhist buildings were being razed by the Muslims. Buddhism then ceased to exist in Khotan.[54]

The Imams who helped Yusuf were assassinated by the Buddhists prior to the last Muslim victory. So Yusuf assigned Khizr Baba, born in Khotan but whose mother originated from Western Turkestan's Mawarannahr, to take care of the shrine of the four Imams at their tomb. Due to the Imam's death in battle and burial in Khotan, Altishahr, and despite their foreign origins, the Kara-khanids are viewed as local saints by the current Hui people in the region.[49]

The Karakhanid also converted the Uyghurs. Prominent Qarakhanids such as Mahmud Kashghari hold a high position among modern Uyghurs.[59] Kashghari viewed the least Persianified Turkic dialects as the "purest" and "the most elegant".[60]

Maps of Turkification of XinjiangEdit

Turkic revisionismEdit

Some Uyghur ultra-nationalist revisionists were worried at the prospect that they are descendants of migrants into Xinjiang and could be seen as invaders and not the indigenous inhabitants. Some sought to revise history. Turghun Almas in his book Uyghurlar claimed that Uyghurs were always natives of Xinjiang; that the Tarim mummies were Uyghurs; that Uyghurs invented gunpowder, paper, compass, printing (all actually invented by China); and that Uyghur civilization is 6,000 years old and is the origin of all world civilization.[61][62] Qurban Wäli also claimed Uyghur civilization is 6,000 years old and native to Xinjiang.[63][64]

But there is no evidence for such claims.[65][66]

The Chinese government pointed out that it was in the 9th century when Uyghurs migrated into Xinjiang.[67][68] The international community, including hstorians cand geneticists from the US and Europe, onfirm that it was the 9th century when Uyghurs moved into Xinjiang.[69][70]B Nonethelesssome Uyghurs still eagerly believe books written by Uyghur authors like Almas which glorify their past and assume anything they write is automatically true.[71]

Legacy of Han and TangEdit

The Han and Tang dynasties were the first major great powers to rule both Central Asia and Xinjiang. Their influence and idolization over Xinjiang continued even after the Tang, through the Kara-Khanids, Liao, and until the Mongol Empire, the only other world power in history to unify both Xinjiang with Central Asia.

It was the An Lushan Rebellion and not the defeat at Talas that ended the Tang presence in Central Asia because the Arabs did not proceed any further after the battle.[72] In fact because the Arabs did not proceed to Xinjiang at all, the battle was of no importance strategically.[73] Despite the conversion of some Karluk Turks after Talas, the majority did not convert to Islam until the mid 10th century under Sultan Satuq Bughra Khan when they established the Kara-Khanid Khanate.[74][75][76][77][78][79] But by then the Tang dynasty had already long withdrew from Central Asia.

 
Sogdian donors to the Buddha (fresco, with detail), Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves, Bezeklik, eastern Tarim Basin, 8th century.

The Han and Tang left an indelible Sinified impression Xinjiang's administration and culture, including: Chinese imperial examinations, Silk Road settlements, military farms, sancai (三彩, three color) glaze in Central Asia and Western Eurasia, continued circulation of Chinese coins as currency.[80]

Central Asian Muslims held China in high regard insofar as kingdoms like the Qara-Khitai used Chinese administration, titles, culture, and language to legitimize their rule over the region.

Impact on the Liao and Qara KhitaiEdit

During the Liao, many Han Chinese lived in Kedun, situated in present-day Mongolia.[81]

In 1124 the Khitan, led by Yelü Dashi and the royal family marched from Kedun to establish the Qara Khitai in Central Asia. The migration included Han Chinese, Bohai, Jurchen, Mongol tribes, the Xiao consort clan, etc.[82] Some Khitans migrated into western areas even before.[83]

The Qara-Khitai empire retained Chinese characteristics in their state to appeal to the Muslim Central Asians and legitimize Khitai rule.[84] This was because China had a good reputation among the Muslims, who viewed China as extremely civilized, with their unique script (hanzi), expert artisans, legal system, justice and religious tolerance. These were among the virtues attributed to the Chinese despite their idol worship. At the time, the Turkic, Arab, Byzantine, Indian rulers, and the Chinese emperor were known as the world's "five great kings." The memory of Tang China was so engraved into the Muslim perception that they continued to view China through the lens of the Tang. Anachronisms appeared in Muslim writings even after the end of the Tang.[85]

During the Mongol Empire, more Han Chinese moved into Besh Baliq, Almaliq and Samarqand in Central Asia to work as artisans and farmers.[86] The Liao Chinese traditions helped the Qara Khitai avoid Islamization.[87] They continued to use Chinese as the administrative language.

Names and definitions of ChinaEdit

Muslim writers including Marwazī[disambiguation needed] and Mahmud Kashghārī had more updated information about China in their writings, and included Xinjiang and parts of Central Asia within their definitions of China. Kashgari confirms that Kashgar is a part of China:

Ṣīn [i.e., China] is originally three fold; Upper, in the east which is called Tawjāch; middle which is Khitāy, lower which is Barkhān in the vicinity of Kashgar. But know Tawjāch is known as Maṣīn and Khitai as Ṣīn"

Indeed the Tang controlled Kashgar since the Anxi protectorate.

At the time China was known by many other names:

  • It is occasionally referred to as the "House of Tang" or Tangjia (唐家). The military victories of the Tang in the western regions and Central Asia offers one explanation. However nowadays it is more common to refer to China as "Han" (漢) because of the Han dynasty original military victories against Central Asia and northern nomads. Moreover the Turkic word for China, "Tamghaj" has been possibly derived from Tangjia instead of Tabgatch (Tuoba).[88] Persian, Arab and other western Asian writers also called China by the name "Tamghaj".[89]
  • It was known also as chīn (چين) in Persian and as ṣīn (صين) in Arabic while the Tang capital Chang'an was known as Ḥumdān (حمدان).[85]
  • The Turks named China after the Toba rulers of the Northern Wei as Tamghāj, Tabghāj, Tafghāj or Tawjāch.
  • India introduced the name Maha Chin (greater China) which caused the two different names for China in Persian as chīn and māchīn (چين ماچين) and Arabic ṣīn and māṣīn (صين ماصين).
  • Southern China at Canton was known as Chin while Northern China's Changan was known as Machin, but the definition switched after the Tang dynasty.
  • Although in modern Urdu Chin means China, Chin referred to Central Asia in Muhammad Iqbal's time, which is why Iqbal wrote that "Chin is ours" (referring to the Muslims) in his song Tarana-e-Milli.[90]

Marwazi wrote that the Uyghurs and Khitai were all part of China culturally and geographically.[91] Machin, Mahachin, Chin, and Sin were just different names of the same thing.[92]

Many Muslim writers including Marwazī confirm that Transoxania was a former part of China:

In ancient times all the districts of Transoxania had belonged to the kingdom of China [Ṣīn], with the district of Samarqand as its centre. When Islam appeared and God delivered the said district to the Muslims, the Chinese migrated to their [original] centers, but there remained in Samarqand, as a vestige of them, the art of making paper of high quality. And when they migrated to Eastern parts their lands became disjoined and their provinces divided, and there was a king in China and a king in Qitai and a king in Yugur.

Use of Chinese titles in Central AsiaEdit

The Muslim Central Asians like the Qarakhanid and their Qarluq ancestors retained the legacy of Chinese rule in Central Asia by using titles such as:[93][94]

  • Turkic: "Khan of China" (تمغاج خان, Tamghaj Khan or Tawgach) in Turkic and "the King of the East in China",
  • Arabic: ملك المشرق (أو الشرق) والصين, malik al-mashriq (or al-sharq) wa'l-ṣīn,

The title Malik al-Mashriq wa'l-Ṣīn was bestowed by the 'Abbāsid Caliph upon the Tamghaj Khan, the Samarqand Khaqan Yūsuf by Ḥasan.

After that coins and literature had the title Tamghaj Khan appear on them.

"Turkestan" and Chīn (China) were identified with each other by Fakhr al-Dīn Mubārak Shāh with China being identified as the country where the cities of Balāsāghūn and Kashghar were located.[95]

Turkic Empires after the Tang gained prestige by associating themselves with north Chinese states for example by using titles of "Chinese emperor." "Khitay" was used by the Qara-Khitay, and "Tabghach" was used by the Qarakhanids.[96] Two different branches, the junior Bughra (bull camel) and the Arslan (lion) formed the Qarakhanid royal family. The title "Khan of China" (Tamghaj Khan, تمغاج خان) was used by the Qarakhanid rulers.[97]

The Khitan ruler (of the Liao dynasty) was called the Khan of Chīn.

CoinsEdit

In the Chu valley in Central Asia Tang coins continued to be copied and minted after the Chinese left the area.[98] Today coins with both Chinese and Karoshthi inscriptions have been found in the southern Tarim Basin.[99]

Muslim writers wrote that "Tamghājī silver coins" (sawmhā-yi ṭamghājī) were present in Balkh while tafghājī was used by the writer Ḥabībī, the Qarakhānid leader Böri Tigin (Ibrāhīm Tamghāj Khān) was possibly the one who minted the coins.[100]

Art and literatureEdit

Aladdin, an Arabic Islamic story which is set in China, may have referred to Central Asia.[101]

In the Persian epic Shahnameh the Chin and Turkestan are regarded as the eame, the Khan of Turkestan is called the Khan of Chin.[102][103][104]

The Tang Chinese reign over Qocho and Turfan and the Buddhist religion left a lasting legacy upon the Buddhist Uyghur Kingdom of Qocho with the Tang presented names remaining on the more than 50 Buddhist temples with Emperor Tang Taizong's edicts stored in the "Imperial Writings Tower " and Chinese dictionaries like Jingyun, Yuian, Tang yun, and da zang jing (Buddhist scriptures) stored inside the Buddhist temples and Persian monks also maintained a Manichaean temple in the Kingdom., the Persian Hudud al-'Alam uses the name "Chinese town" to called Qocho, the capital of the Uyghur kingdom.[105]

Chinese linguistic influencesEdit

The Turfan Buddhist Uighurs of the Kingdom of Qocho continued to produce the Chinese Qieyun rime dictionary and developed their own pronunciations of Chinese characters, left over from the Tang influence over the area.[106]

The modern Uyghur linguist Abdurishid Yakup pointed out that the Turfan Uyghur Buddhists studied the Chinese language and used Chinese books like Qianziwen (the thousand character classic) and Qieyun *(a rime dictionary) and it was written that "In Qocho city were more than fifty monasteries, all titles of which are granted by the emperors of the Tang dynasty, which keep many Buddhist texts as Tripitaka, Tangyun, Yupuan, Jingyin etc."[107]

In Central Asia the Uighurs viewed the Chinese script as "very prestigious" so when they developed the Old Uyghur alphabet, based on the Syriac script, they deliberately switched it to vertical like Chinese writing from its original horizontal position in Syriac.[108]

Western LiaoEdit

In 1132, further remnants of the Liao dynasty from Manchuria and North China entered Xinjiang, fleeing the onslaught of the Jurchens into North China. They established an exile regime, the Qara Khitai, which became overlord over both Kara-Khanid held and Uyghur held parts of the Tarim Basin for the next century.

In 1208, a Naiman prince named Kuchlug fled his homeland after being defeated by the Mongols. He fled westward to the Qara Khitai, where he became an advisor. However, he rebelled three years later and usurped the throne of Qara Khitai. His regime proved to be short-lived however because the Mongols under Genghis Khan would soon invade Central Asia including the Qara Khitai.

Mongol Empire, Yuan dynasty and Chagatai KhanateEdit

In 1209, after Genghis Khan had unified the Mongols and began his advance west, the Uyghur state in the Turfan-Urumqi area offered its allegiance to the Mongol Empire. It paid taxes and sent troops to fight for the Mongol imperial effort and work as civil servants. In return, the Uyghur rulers retained control of their kingdom.

In 1218, Genghis captured Qara Khitai.

The Mongol Empire divided into khanates. In 1271 the Yuan dynasty was founded by Kublai Khan and based in modern-day Beijing. It controlled Xinjiang.

After the Kaidu–Kublai war (1268-1301) between the Yuan and Chagatai Khanate (led by Kaidu), most of Xinjiang was occupied by Chagatai. This lasted until the mid-14th century, when Chagatai split in two.

MoghulistanEdit

After the death of Qazan Khan in 1346, the Chagatai Khanate, which embraced both East and West Turkestan, was divided into Transoxiana (west) and Moghulistan (east, controlling parts of Xinjiang). Power in the western half devolved into the hands of several tribal leaders, most notably the Qara'unas. Khans appointed by the tribal rulers were mere puppets.

In the east, Tughlugh Timur (1347–1363), a Chaghataite adventurer, defeated the nomadic Mongols and converted to Islam. During his rein (until 1363), the Moghuls converted to Islam and slowly Turkified. In 1360, and again in 1361, Timur invaded the western half in the hope that he could reunify the khanate. At their height, the Chaghataite domains extended from the Irtysh River in Siberia down to Ghazni in Afghanistan, and from Transoxiana to the Tarim Basin.

 
Central Asia in around 1450

Moghulistan occupied the settled lands of Eastern Turkestan as well as nomad lands north of Tengri tagh. The settled lands were known at the time as Manglai Sobe or Mangalai Suyah, which translates as "Shiny Land" or "Advanced Land that faced the Sun." These included west and central Tarim oasis-cities, such as Khotan, Yarkand, Yangihisar, Kashgar, Aksu, and Uch Turpan; and hardly involved eastern Tangri Tagh oasis-cities, such as Kucha, Karashahr, Turpan and Kumul, where a local Uyghur administration and Buddhist population still existed. The nomadic areas comprised present-day Kyrgyzstan and parts of Kazakhstan, including Jettisu, the area of seven rivers.

Moghulistan existed around 100 years and then split into two parts: 1) Yarkand state (mamlakati Yarkand), with its capital at Yarkand, which embraced all the settled lands of Eastern Turkestan; and 2) nomadic Moghulistan, which embraced the nomad lands north of Tengri Tagh. The founder of Yarkand was Mirza Abu-Bakr, who was from the Dughlat tribe. In 1465, he raised a rebellion, captured Yarkand, Kashgar, and Khotan, and declared himself an independent ruler, successfully repelling attacks by the Moghulistan rulers Yunus Khan and his son Akhmad Khan (or Ahmad Alaq, named Alach, "Slaughterer", for his war against the Kalmyks).

Dughlat amirs had ruled the country that lay south of the Tarim Basin from the middle of the thirteenth century, on behalf of Chagatai Khan and his descendants, as their satellites. The first Dughlat ruler, who received lands directly from the hands of Chagatai, was amir Babdagan or Tarkhan. The capital of the emirate was Kashgar, and the country was known as Mamlakati Kashgar. Although the emirate, representing the settled lands of Eastern Turkestan, was formally under the rule of the Moghul khans, the Dughlat amirs often tried to put an end to that dependence, and raised frequent rebellions, one of which resulted in the separation of Kashgar from Moghulistan for almost 15 years (1416–1435). Mirza Abu-Bakr ruled Yarkand for 48 years.[109]

Islamic conquest of the Buddhist UyghursEdit

Islamification of the Tarim Basin
Date14th-16th centuries
Location
Tarim Basin in Xinjiang
Result Chagatai Muslim victory, complete Islamicisation of all Turks in the Tarim Basin, extinction of Buddhism among Turks in the Tarim Basin
Belligerents
Turkic Muslim Chagatai Khanate Turkic Buddhist Uyghurs (Kingdom of Qocho and Qara Del)
Commanders and leaders
Khizr Khwaja
Mansur

Buddhism survived in Uyghurstan (Turfan and Qocho) during the Ming dynasty.[110]

The Buddhist Uyghurs of the Kingdom of Qocho and Turfan were converted to Islam by conquest during a ghazat (holy war) at the hands of the Muslim Chagatai Khizr Khwaja.[111]

Kara Del was a Mongolian-ruled and Uighur-populated Buddhist kingdom. The Muslim Chagatai Khan Mansur invaded and "used the sword" to make the population convert to Islam.[112]

After being converted to Islam, the descendants of the previously Buddhist Uyghurs in Turfan failed to retain memory of their ancestral legacy and falsely believed that the "infidel Kalmuks" (Dzungars) were the ones who built Buddhist monuments in their area.[113][114]

For centuries Altishar had been 'the abod of Islam'. Its inhabitants lived under the obligation of Jihad.[115]

Maps of the Second Islamization of XinjiangEdit

State of YarkandEdit

 
Tombs of Yarkand Khans (near Altyn Mosque)

In May, 1514, Sultan Said Khan, grandson of Yunus Khan (ruler of Moghulistan between 1462 and 1487) and third son of Ahmad Alaq, made an expedition against Kashgar from Andijan with only 5000 men, and having captured the Yangi Hissar citadel, that defended Kashgar from south road, took the city, dethroning Mirza Abu-Bakr. Soon after, other cities of Eastern Turkestan — Yarkant, Khotan, Aksu, and Uch Turpan — joined him, and recognized Sultan Said Khan as ruler, creating a union of six cities, called Altishahr. Sultan Said Khan's sudden success is considered to be contributed to by the dissatisfaction of the population with the tyrannical rule of Mirza Abu-Bakr and the unwillingness of the dughlat amirs to fight against a descendant of Chagatai Khan, deciding instead to bring the head of the slain ruler to Sultan Said Khan. This move put an end to almost 300 years of rule (nominal and actual) by the Dughlat Amirs in the cities of West Kashgaria (1219–1514). He made Yarkand the capital of a state, "Mamlakati Yarkand" which lasted until 1678.

The Khojah KingdomEdit

In the 17th century, the Dzungars (Oirats, Kalmyks) established an empire over much of the region. Oirats controlled an area known as Grand Tartary or the Kalmyk Empire to Westerners, which stretched from the Great Wall of China to the Don River, and from the Himalayas to Siberia. A Sufi master Khoja Āfāq defeated Saidiye kingdom and took the throne at Kashgar with the help of the Oirat (Dzungar) Mongols. After Āfāq's death, the Dzungars held his descendants hostage. The Khoja dynasty rule in the Altishahr (Tarim Basin) region lasted until 1759.

Dzungar KhanateEdit

 
Puning Temple, built to commemorate the defeat of the Dzungars

The Mongolian Dzungar (also Zunghar; Mongolian: Зүүнгар Züüngar) was the collective identity of several Oirat tribes that formed and maintained one of the last nomadic empires. The Dzungar Khanate covered the area called Dzungaria and stretched from the west end of the Great Wall of China to present-day eastern Kazakhstan, and from present-day northern Kyrgyzstan to southern Siberia. Most of this area was only renamed "Xinjiang" by the Chinese after the fall of the Dzungar Empire. It existed from the early 17th century to the mid-18th century.

The Turkic Muslim sedentary people of the Tarim Basin were originally ruled by the Chagatai Khanate while the nomadic Buddhist Oirat Mongol in Dzungaria ruled over the Dzungar Khanate. The Naqshbandi Sufi Khojas, descendants of the Prophet Muhammad, had replaced the Chagatayid Khans as the ruling authority of the Tarim Basin in the early 17th century. There was a struggle between two factions of Khojas, the Afaqi (White Mountain) faction and the Ishaqi (Black Mountain) faction. The Ishaqi defeated the Afaqi, which resulted in the Afaqi Khoja inviting the 5th Dalai Lama, the leader of the Tibetan Buddhists, to intervene on his behalf in 1677. The 5th Dalai Lama then called upon his Dzungar Buddhist followers in the Dzungar Khanate to act on this invitation. The Dzungar Khanate then conquered the Tarim Basin in 1680, setting up the Afaqi Khoja as their puppet ruler.

Khoja Afaq asked the 5th Dalai Lama when he fled to Lhasa to help his Afaqi faction take control of the Tarim Basin (Kashgaria).[116] The Dzungar leader Galdan was then asked by the Dalai Lama to restore Khoja Afaq as ruler of Kashgararia.[117] Khoja Afaq collaborated with Galdan's Dzungars when the Dzungars conquered the Tarim Basin from 1678-1680 and set up the Afaqi Khojas as puppet client rulers.[118][119][120] The Dalai Lama blessed Galdan's conquest of the Tarim Basin and Turfan Basin.[121]

67,000 patman (each patman is 4 piculs and 5 pecks) of grain 48,000 silver ounces were forced to be paid yearly by Kashgar to the Dzungars and cash was also paid by the rest of the cities to the Dzungars. Trade, milling, and distilling taxes, corvée labor,saffron, cotton, and grain were also extracted by the Dzungars from the Tarim Basin. Every harvest season, women and food had to be provided to Dzungars when they came to extract the taxes from them.[122]

When the Dzungars levied the traditional nomadic Alban poll tax upon the Muslims of Altishahr, the Muslims viewed it as the payment of jizyah (a tax traditionally taken from non-Muslims by Muslim conquerors).[123]

After being converted to Islam, the descendants of the previously Buddhist Uyghurs in Turfan failed to retain memory of their ancestral legacy and falsely believed that the "infidel Kalmuks" (Dzungars) were the ones who built Buddhist monuments in their area.[113][114]

Qing dynastyEdit

Dzungar warEdit

The Qing dynasty, established by the Manchus in China, gained control over eastern Xinjiang as a result of a long struggle with the Dzungars that began in the seventeenth century. In 1755, the Qing Empire attacked Ghulja, and captured the Dzungar Khan. Over the next two years, the Manchus and Mongol armies of the Qing destroyed the remnants of the Dzungar Khanate, and attempted to divide the Xinjiang region into four sub-Khanates under four chiefs. Similarly, the Qing made members of a clan of Sufi shaykhs known as the Khojas, rulers in the western Tarim Basin, south of the Tianshan Mountains. After Oirat nobel Amursana's request to be declared Dzungar khan went unanswered, he led a revolt against the Qing. Over the next two years, Qing armies destroyed the remnants of the Dzungar khanate.

The Turkic Muslims of the Turfan and Kumul Oases then submitted to the Qing dynasty of China, and asked China to free them from the Dzungars. The Qing accepted the rulers of Turfan and Kumul as Qing vassals. The Qing dynasty waged war against the Dzungars for decades until finally defeating them and then Qing Manchu Bannermen carried out the Dzungar genocide, nearly wiping them from existence and depopulating Dzungaria. The Qing then freed the Afaqi Khoja leader Burhan-ud-din and his brother Khoja Jihan from their imprisonment by the Dzungars, and appointed them to rule as Qing vassals over the Tarim Basin. The Khoja brothers decided to renege on this deal and declare themselves as independent leaders of the Tarim Basin. The Qing and the Turfan leader Emin Khoja crushed their revolt and China then took full control of both Dzungaria and the Tarim Basin by 1759.

After perpetrating wholesale massacres on the native Dzungar Oirat Mongol population in the Dzungar genocide, in 1759, the Qing finally consolidated their authority by settling Chinese emigrants, together with a Manchu Qing garrison. The Qing put the whole region under the rule of a General of Ili, headquartered at the fort of Huiyuan (the so-called "Manchu Kuldja", or Yili), 30 km (19 mi)west of Ghulja (Yining). The Qing Qianlong Emperor conquered the Dzungarian plateau and the Tarim Basin, bringing the two separate regions, respectively north and south of the Tianshan mountains, under his rule as Xinjiang.[124] The south was inhabited by Turkic Muslims (Uyghurs) and the north by Dzungar Mongols.[125] The Dzungars were also called "Eleuths" or "Kalmyks".

Ush rebellionEdit

The Ush rebellion in 1765 by Uyghurs against the Manchus occurred after Uyghur women were gang raped by the servants and son of Manchu official Su-cheng.[126][127][128] It was said that Ush Muslims had long wanted to sleep on [Sucheng and son's] hides and eat their flesh. because of the rape of Uyghur Muslim women for months by the Manchu official Sucheng and his son.[129] The Manchu Emperor ordered that the Uyghur rebel town be massacred, the Qing forces enslaved all the Uyghur children and women and slaughtered the Uyghur men.[130] Manchu soldiers and Manchu officials regularly having sex with or raping Uyghur women caused massive hatred and anger by Uyghur Muslims to Manchu rule. The invasion by Jahangir Khoja was preceded by another Manchu official, Binjing who raped a Muslim daughter of the Kokan aqsaqal from 1818-1820. The Qing sought to cover up the rape of Uyghur women by Manchus to prevent anger against their rule from spreading among the Uyghurs.[131]

Qing continuing Han and Tang legacyEdit

The Qing identified their state as "China" (中國), and referred to it as "Dulimbai Gurun" in Manchu. The Qing equated the lands of the Qing state (including present-day Manchuria, Dzungaria in Xinjiang, Mongolia, and other areas) as "China" in both the Chinese and Manchu languages, defining China as a multi-ethnic state. The Qianlong Emperor compared his achievements with that of the Han and Tang ventures into Central Asia.[132]

Qianlong's conquest of Xinjiang was driven by his mindfulness of the examples set by the Han and Tang[133] Qing scholars who wrote the official Imperial Qing gazetteer for Xinjiang made frequent references to the Han and Tang era names of the region.[134] The Qing conqueror of Xinjiang, Zhao Hui, is ranked for his achievements with the Tang dynasty General Gao Xianzhi and the Han dynasty Generals Ban Chao and Li Guangli.[135]

Both Han and Tang models for ruling Xinjiang were adopted by the Qing. The Qing system also superficially resembled that of nomadic powers like the Qara Khitay, but in reality the Qing system was different from that of the nomads, both in terms of territory conquered geographically and their centralized administrative system, which resembled a western stye (European and Russian) system of rule.[136]

The Qing portrayed their conquest of Xinjiang in official works as a continuation and restoration of the Han and Tang accomplishments in the region, mentioning the previous achievements of those dynasties.[137] The Qing justified their conquest by claiming that the Han and Tang era borders were being restored,[138] and identifying the Han and Tang's grandeur and authority with the Qing.[139]

Many Manchu and Mongol Qing writers who wrote about Xinjiang did so in the Chinese language, from a culturally Chinese point of view.[140] Han and Tang era stories about Xinjiang were recounted, and ancient Chinese places names were reused and circulated.[141] Han and Tang era records and accounts of Xinjiang were the only writings on the region available to Qing era Chinese in the 18th century and needed to be replaced with updated accounts by the literati.[125][140]

Migration into XinjiangEdit

After Qing dynasty defeated the Dzungar Oirat Mongols, the Qing settled Han, Hui, Manchus, Xibe, and Taranchis (Uyghurs) from the Tarim Basin, into Dzungaria. Han Chinese criminals and political exiles were exiled to Dzungaria, such as Lin Zexu. Hui Muslims and Salar Muslims belonging to banned Sufi orders like the Jahriyya were also exiled to Dzhungaria. After crushing the 1781 Jahriyya rebellion, the Qing exiled Jahriyya adherents too.

 
Liu Darin the amban of Khotan.

Han and Hui merchants were initially only allowed to trade in the Tarim Basin. Han and Hui settlement in the Tarim Basin was banned until the 1830 Muhammad Yusuf Khoja invasion, after which the Qing rewarded the merchants for fighting off Khoja by allowing them to settle down.[142]

In 1870, there were many Chinese of all occupations living in Dzungaria, and they were well settled in the area, while in Turkestan (Tarim Basin) there were only a few Chinese merchants and soldiers in several garrisons among the Muslim population.[143][144]

At the start of the 19th century, 40 years after the Qing reconquest, there were around 155,000 Han and Hui Chinese in northern Xinjiang and somewhat more than twice that number of Uyghurs in southern Xinjiang.[145]

Reclaiming the Tarim BasinEdit

Yakub Beg ruled Kashgaria at the height of the Great Game era when the British, Russian, and Manchu Qing empires were all vying for Central Asia. Kashgaria extended from the capital Kashgar in south-western Xinjiang to Ürümqi, Turfan, and Hami in central and eastern Xinjiang more than a thousand kilometers to the north-east, including a majority of what was known at the time as East Turkestan.[146]

They remained under his rule until December 1877 when General Zuo Zongtang (also known as General Tso) reconquered the region in 1877 for Qing China. In 1881, Qing recovered the Gulja region through diplomatic negotiations in the Treaty of Saint Petersburg (1881).

In 1884, Qing China renamed the conquered region, established Xinjiang (新疆, "new frontier") as a province, formally applying onto it the political system of China proper. The two previously separate regions,

  1. Dzungaria, known as Zhunbu (準部), Tianshan Beilu (天山北路, Northern March),[147][148][149]
  2. The Tarim Basin, which had been known as Altishahr, Huibu (Muslim region), Huijiang (Muslim-land) or "Tianshan Nanlu" (天山南路, Southern March),[150][151]

were combined into a single province called Xinjiang in 1884.[152] Before this, there was never one administrative unit in which North Xinjiang (Zhunbu) and Southern Xinjiang (Huibu) were integrated together.[153] Dzungaria's alternate name is 北疆 (Beijing, North Xinjiang) and Altishahr's alternate name is 南疆 (Nanjiang, South Xinjiang).[154]

After Xinjiang was converted into a province by the Qing, the provincialization and reconstruction programs initiated by the Qing resulted in the Chinese government helping Uyghurs migrate from southern Xinjiang to other areas of the province, like the area between Qitai and the capital, formerly nearly completely inhabited by Han Chinese, and other areas like Urumqi, Tacheng (Tabarghatai), Yili, Jinghe, Kur Kara Usu, Ruoqiang, Lop Nor, and the Tarim River's lower reaches.[155] It was during Qing times that Uyghurs were settled throughout all of Xinjiang, from their original home cities in the western Tarim Basin.

Intermarriage between Han and TurksEdit

There were eras in Xinjiang's history where intermarriage was common. "Laxity" led Uyghur women to marry Chinese men and not wear veils after Yaqub Beg's rule ended. Uyghurs also believe that they have Han Chinese ancestry from historical intermarriage (see around 10th century), such as those living in Turpan.[156] From 1911-1949 when the Guomindang ruled, many Uyghur girls approached Han soldiers for relationships.[157]

Although banned in Islam, a form of temporary marriage from which the man could easily terminate and ignore the traditional contract was created. It was called "marriage of convenience" by Turkic Muslims in Xinjiang. However such marriages were repeatedly conducted even in the Quran's Surah Fatiha by an Emam between Ughlug Beg's great granddaughter Nura Han and Ahmad Kamal.[158]

Even though Muslim women are forbidden to marry non-Muslims in Islamic law, between 1880-1949 the Islamic law was frequently flouted in Xinjiang since Chinese men married Uyghur women anyways. Foreigners suggest it was because the women were poor. Turki women who married Chinese were labeled as whores, and their marriages considered illegitimate by Islamic law.

BenefitsEdit

However the women obtained great benefits by marrying Chinese men nonetheless since the Chinese defended them from Islamic authorities so the women were not subjected to the tax on prostitution and were able to save income for themselves.

Moreover Chinese men gave their Turki wives privileges which Turki men's wives did not have. Chinese wives were not forced to wear a burqa, and in fact a Chinese man in Kashgar once beat a mullah who tried to force his wife to veil.

The Turki women also were not subjected to any legal binding to their Chinese husbands so they could make their Chinese husbands provide them as much money as she wanted for her relatives and herself since otherwise the women could just leave. Moreover the property of Chinese men was left to their Turki wives after they died.[159][160]

Turki women considered Turki men to be inferior husbands to Chinese (and Hindus). Because they were viewed as "impure" Islamic cemeteries banned the Turki wives of Chinese men from being buried within them. The Turki women got around this problem by donating to shrines and buying graves in other towns. Besides Chinese men, others in Xinjiang such as Hindus, Armenians, Jews, Russians, and Badakhshanis intermarried with local Turki women.[161]

Le Coq reported that in his time sometimes Turkis distrusted Tungans (Hui Muslims) more than Han Chinese, so that a Tungan would never be given a Turki woman in marriage by her father, while a (Han) Chinese men could be given a Turki woman in marriage by her father.[162]

In Kashgar 1933 the Chinese kept concubines and spouses who were Turkic women.[163]

Qing "temporary marriages"Edit

Xinjiang temporary marriage, marriage de convenance, was called "waqitliq toy" in Turki. It was one of the prevalent forms of polygamy, "the mulla who performs the ceremony arranging for the divorce at the same time." The women and men married for a fixed period of time, several days to a week. While temporary marriage was banned in Russian Turkestan, Chinese-ruled Xinjiang permitted the temporary marriage where it was widespread.[164]

As a result Chinese merchants and soldiers, and some foreigners like Russians, foreign Muslims, and other Turki merchants all engaged in temporary marriages with Turki women. Since a lot of foreigners lived in Yarkand, temporary marriage flourished there more than it did in areas towards Kucha's east.[165]

The basic formalities of normal marriages were maintained as a facade even in temporary marriages.[166] Prostitution by Turki women due to the buying of daughters from impoverished families and divorced women was recorded by Scotsman George Hunter.[167] Mullahs officiated temporary marriages; and both the divorce and the marriage proceedings were undertaken in the same ceremony if the marriage was only to last for a certain arranged time. There was also a temporary marriage bazaar in Yangi Hissar according to Nazaroff.[168][169] Temporary marriages especially violated Sunni Islam Sharia.[170]

"Slut-shaming" and mixed childrenEdit

The local society accepted the Turki women and Chinese men's mixed offspring as their own people despite the marriages violating Sharia. Turki women also conducted "temporary marriages" with Chinese men such as nearby Chinese soldiers temporarily stationed for tours of duty. After these marriages the Chinese men returned to their own cities and "sold" their mixed daughters and Turki wives to his comrades. They took their sons with them if they could afford it but otherwise left them behind.[171]

Valikhanov claimed that the mixed children of Turkistan were referred to as çalğurt. Turki women were bashed for having "negative character" by a Kashgari Turki woman's Tibetan husband. Racist views of each other's ethnicities between partners in interethnic marriages still persisted sometimes. During this era it was mostly Turki women marrying foreign men with a few cases of the opposite occurring.[172]

Turkic Muslims in different areas of Xinjiang held derogatory views of each other such as claiming that Chinese men were welcomed by the loose Yamçi girls.[173]

Andijani (Kokandi) Turkic Muslim merchants (from modern Uzbekistan), who shared the same religion, similar culture, cuisine, clothing, and phenotypes with the Altishahri Uyghurs, also frequently married local Altishahri women. The name "chalgurt" was also applied to their mixed race daughters and sons. The daughters were left behind with their Uyghur Altishahri mothers while the sons were taken by the Kokandi fathers when they returned to their homeland.[174]

The Qing then banned Khoqandi merchants from marrying Kashgari women. Due to 'group jealously'; religious, ethnic differences; and sex; disputes broke out due to Chinese and Turki. The Turki locals also viewed fellow Turkic Muslim Andijanis as competitors for "their own women." A Turki proverb said "Do not let a man from Andijan into your house."[175]

Written accountsEdit

Childless, married youthful women were called "chaucan" in Turkey: "there was the chaucan always ready to contract an alliance for a long or short period with the merchant or traveller visiting the country or with anybody else".[176][177]

Henry Lansdell wrote in 1893 in his book Chinese Central Asia an account of temporary marriage practiced by a Turki Muslim woman, who married three different Chinese officers and a Muslim official.[178] The station of prostitutes was accorded by society to these Muslim women who had sex with Chinese men.[179]

Intermarriage and patronage of prostitutes were among the forms of interaction between the Turki in Xinjiang and visiting Chinese merchants.[180]

Many of the young Kashgari women were most attractive in appearance, and some of the little girls quite lovely, their plaits of long hair falling from under a jaunty little embroidered cap, their big dark eyes, flashing teeth and piquant olive faces reminding me of Italian or Spanish children... The women wear their hair in two or five plaits much thickened and lengthened by the addition of yak's hair, but the children in several tiny plaits.

The peasants are fairly well off, as the soil is rich, the abundant water-supply free, and the taxation comparatively light. It was always interesting to meet them taking their live stock into market. Flocks of sheep with tiny lambs, black and white, pattered along the dusty road; here a goat followed its master like a dog, trotting behind the diminutive ass which the farmer bestrode; or boys, clad in the whity-brown native cloth, shouted incessantly at donkeys almost invisible under enormous loads of forage, or carried fowls and ducks in bunches head downwards, a sight that always made me long to come to the rescue of the luckless birds.

It was pleasant to see the women riding alone on horseback, managing their mounts to perfection. They formed a sharp contrast to their Persian sisters, who either sit behind their husbands or have their steeds led by the bridle; and instead of keeping silence in public, as is the rule for the shrouded women of Iran, these farmers' wives chaffered and haggled with the men in the bazar outside the city, transacting business with their veils thrown back.

Certainly the mullas do their best to keep the fair sex in their place, and are in the habit of beating those who show their faces in the Great Bazar. But I was told that poetic justice had lately been meted out to one of these upholders of the law of Islam, for by mistake he chastised a Kashgari woman married to a Chinaman, whereupon the irate husband set upon him with a big stick and castigated him soundly.[181][182][183][184]

Almost every Chinaman in Yarkand, soldier or civilian, takes unto himself a temporary wife, dispensing entirely with the services of the clergy, as being superfluous, and most of the high officials also give way to the same amiable weakness, their mistresses being in almost all cases natives of Khotan, which city enjoys the unenviable distinction of supplying every large city in Turkestan with courtesans.

When a Chinaman is called back to his own home in China proper, or a Chinese soldier has served his time in Turkestan and has to return to his native city of Pekin or Shanghai, he either leaves his temporary wife behind to shift for herself, or he sells her to a friend. If he has a family he takes the boys with him—if he can afford it—failing that, the sons are left alone and unprotected to fight the battle of life, while in the case of daughters, he sells them to one of his former companions for a trifling sum.

The natives, although all Mahammadans, have a strong predilection for the Chinese, and seem to like their manners and customs, and never seem to resent this behaviour to their womankind, their own manners, customs, and morals [?] being of the very loosest description.[185][186]

That a Muslim should take in marriage one of alien faith is not objected to; it is rather deemed a meritorious act thus to bring an unbeliever to the true religion. The Muslim woman, on the other hand, must not be given in marriage to a non-Muslim; such a union is regarded as the most heinous of sins. In this matter, however, compromises are sometimes made with heaven: the marriage of a Turki princess with the emperor Ch'ien-lung has already been referred to; and, when the present writer passed through Minjol (a day's journey west of Kashgar) in 1902, a Chinese with a Turki wife [concubine?] was presented to him.[187]

He procured me a Chinese interpreter, Fong Shi, a pleasant and agreeable young Chinaman, who wrote his mother-tongue with ease and spoke Jagatai Turki fluently, and—did not smoke opium. He left his wife and child behind him in Khotan, Liu Darin making himself answerable for their maintenance. But I also paid Fong Shi three months' salary in advance, and that money he gave to his wife. Whenever I could find leisure he was to give me lessons in Chinese, and we began at once, even before we left Khotan.[188][189]

Thus the young Chinaman's proud dream of one day riding through the gates of Peking and beholding the palace (yamen) of his fabulously mighty emperor, as well as of perhaps securing, through my recommendation, a lucrative post, and finally, though by no means last in his estimation, of exchanging the Turki wife he had left behind in Khotan for a Chinese bride—this proud dream was pricked at the foot of Arka-tagh. Sadly and silently he stood alone in the desert, gazing after us, as we continued our way towards the far-distant goal of his youthful ambition.[190][191]

Women in Uyghur societyEdit

Swedish Christian missionaries observed the oppressive conditions for Uyghur Muslim women in Xinjiang. By comparison Han Chinese women were free and few bothered to become maids unlike the Uyghur women.[192] The lack of Han Chinese women in Xinjiang led to Uyghur Muslim women marrying Han Chinese men. Moreover Unmarried Muslim Uyghur women married non-Muslims like Chinese if they could not find a Muslim husband. These women were hated by their families and people.In 1917 the Swedish Christian missionary J. E. Lundahl wconfirmedthat the local Muslim women in Xinjiang married Chinese men because of a lack of Chinese women, and hhat te relatives of the woman and other Muslims reviled the women for their marriages.[193]

Four wives were allowed along with any number of temporary marriages contracted by Mullahs to "pleasure wives" for a set time period.[194] Some had 60 and 35 wives. Divorces and marrying was rampant, many being conducted by Mullahs simultaneously. Some men married hundreds and could divorce women for no reason. The Uyghurs also viewed single unmarried women as prostitutes and held them in extreme disregard.[195]

Societal expectationsEdit

Among Uyghurs it was thought that God designed women to endure hardship and work, the word for "helpless one", ʿājiza, was used to call women who were not married while women who were married were called mazlūm among Turkic Muslims in Xinjiang, however, divorce and remarriage was facile for the women[196]

The modern Uyghur dialect in Turfan uses the Arabic word for oppressed, maẓlum, to refer to "married old woman" and pronounce it as mäzim.[197] It literally means "oppressed person" (mazlum-kishi).[198] A woman's robe was referred to as mazlúm-cha chappan.[199]

MarriageEdit

Women of Khotan, Yarkand, and Kashgar usually married at ages 12-13 minimum.[200][201] Sometimes it was even 10 years for girls and 12 for boys.[202] Before puberty child marriages were practices with both boys and girls. Cousin marriages were practiced by the wealthy. There was no marriage between adherents of the Artish located pro-China Black Mountain and the Kucha located anti-China White Mountain sects.[203]

Marriages were arranged and arbitrated with financial and religious obligations from both parties.[204] Less complicated arrangements were made for widows and divorcees who wanted to marry again.[205] Wives were forced to stay in the house, had to be obedient to their husbands and were judged according to how many children they could bear.[206] Ceremonies were held after the birth of a child.[207]

Unmarried women were viewed as whores, and many children were born with venereal diseases.[208] Public shaming was arranged for adulterers.[209] Women called to Allah to grant them marriage by the shrines of saints.[204]

Banning of child-marriagesEdit

Child marriages for girls was very common and the Uyghurs called girls "overripe" if they were not married by 15 or 16 years old. So they were married younger, with one girl married at age 8.[210] Marriages were arranged, and husbands were sought out for suitable matches by parents. Sometimes men aged 50 or 40 took young girls as brides in marriages set up by parents. This was criticized by the Uyghur Christian Nur Luke, who abandoned Islam.[166]

The high number of "child marriages" at an extreme young age led to high divorce rates.[211]

The Uyghurs viewed the birth of a girl was seen as a terrible calamity, and boys were worth more to them. The constant stream of marriage and divorces led to children being mistreated by stepparents.[212] A Swedish missionary said:

"These girls were surely the first girls in Eastern Turkestan who had had a real youth before getting married. The Muslim woman has no youth. Directly from childhood’s carefree playing of games she enters life’s bitter everyday toil… She is but a child and a wife."

Uyghurs Muslims cited the marriage of 9 year old Aisha to the Prophet Muhammad to justify marrying girl children, whom they viewed as mere products. The Muslims also attacked the Swedish Christian mission and Hindu residents in the city.[213]

As a result of lobbying by the Christian missionaries, the Chinese government banned child marriage for under-15-year-old girls in Urumqi. However some Uyghur Muslims ignored the law. Uyghur women converts to Christianity did not wear the veil, and local Uyghur Muslim women were inspired by the missionary Christian women to be independent and pursue education instead of marriage, saying “Look at the Swedes, they remain single their whole lives if they want to.” One man was astonished that Jesus had a conversation with the Samaritan woman.[214]

Turki-Russian clash quelled by the QingEdit

An anti-Russian uproar broke out when Russian customs officials, three Cossacks and a Russian courier invited local Turki Muslim prostitutes to a party in January 1902 in Kashgar. This caused a massive brawl between the inflamed local Turki Muslim populace against the Russians on the pretense of protecting Muslim women because of swelling anti-Russian sentiment. Even though morality was not strict in Kashgar, the local Turki Muslims violently clashed with the Russians before they were dispersed. The Chinese sought to end to tensions to prevent the Russians from using this as a pretext to invade.[215][216][217]

After the riot, the Russians sent troops to Sarikol in Tashkurghan and demanded that the Sarikol postal services be placed under Russian supervision. The locals of Sarikol believed that the Russians would seize the entire district from the Chinese and send more soldiers even after the Russians tried to negotiate with the Begs of Sarikol and sway them to their side. They failed since the Sarikoli officials and authorities demanded in a petition to the Amban of Yarkand that they be evacuated to Yarkand to avoid being harassed by the Russians. They also objected to the Russian presence in Sarikol, as the Sarikolis did not believe Russian claims that they would leave them alone and were only involved in mail service.[218][219]

VeilsEdit

Burqas were worn by Turki women.[220] Traveller Ahmad Kamal writes an account in Land without Laughter , which describes his trip to Xinjiang during the Kumul Rebellion. In the streets of the bazar of Urumchi Turki women did not veil unlike southern Xinjiang's Muslim bazars where women veiled in public.[221]

Turki men called Russian (Russ) and American (Amerikaluk) women "whores" (Jilops) because they wore loose public bathing outfits and no veils.[222]

Nomadic women did not wear the face veil and neither did peasant women. Only urban rich did. Kamal saw an unveiled peasant woman Jennett Han.[223] The face veil was only allowed to be taken off in the house and were worn just for their husbands and fellow women to see.[224] When Kamal and his companions spied on a boudoir in a Turki garden, the young women dropped their veils whereas the "older hags" were angry (at the peeping Toms).[225][226]

Face covering veils with caps of otter were worn in the streets by women in public in Xinjiang.[227][228] In order to properly mount her stirrup with her foot, one Turki woman had to temporarily lift her veil to see better.[229] Ahmad Kamal's girlfriend Nura Han covered her face with the veil but then removed it after marrying him.[230][231][232]

One saying was that

"Muslim maidens wear the red that bespeaks a virgin, and the transparency of their veils reveals a desire to change their raiment's hue." [233][234]

ProstitutionEdit

Uyghur prostitutes were encountered by Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim who wrote they were especially to be found in Khotan.[235][236][237] He commented on "venereal diseases".[238]

Different ethnic groups had different attitudes toward prostitution. George W. Hunter (missionary) noted that while Tungan Muslims would almost never prostitute their daughters, Turki Muslims (Uyghurs) would, which was why Turki prostitutes were common around the country.[239]

AphorismsEdit

Uyghur sayings on women:[240][241][242][243]

On Uyghur Women
English translation Uyghur (romanized)
Firewood serves for winter, a wife serves for her husband's pleasure. Qişniŋ rahiti oton, ärniŋ rahiti xoton.
Woman is the slave of the house. Xotun kişi tüt tamniñ quli.
Allah is God for a woman, the husband is half God. Ayalniñ pütün xudasi XUDA, yärim Xudasi är.
The first wife is a good woman, the second a witch, and the third a prostitute. Birgä täkkän yaxši, ikkigä täkkän baxši, üčkä täkkän paxši.
A family with many women will be miserable. Qizi barniñ därdi bar.
Let your daughter marry or you will die of regret instead of illness. Qiziñ Öyde ärsiz uzaq turmiğay, ölärsän puşaymanda sän ağirmay.
Woman: long hair, short wit. Xotun xäqniñ çaçi uzun, ä qli qisqa.
A woman without a husband is like a horse without a halter. Ärsiz xotun, yugänsiz baytal.
Men rely on life, a wife relies on her husband. Är jeni bilän, xişri äri bilän.

EducationEdit

Mosques ran the schools (or maktab مكتب in Arabic).[244][245] Madrasas and mosques were where most education took place. The Madrasas taught poetry, logic, syntax, Arabic grammar, Islamic law, the Quran, but not much history.[246][247][248]

The Jadidists Turkic Muslims from Russia spread new ideas on education.[249][250][251][252][253][254] Between the 1600s and 1900s many Turki language tazkirah texts were written.[255]

Indian-produced literature in the Persian language was exported to Kashgar.[256][257]

Chinese books were also popular among Uyghurs.[258] Kashgar's earliest printed work was translated by Johannes Avetaranian. He helped in producing the Turki language version of the Shung-chi Emperor's work.[259] The "Sacred Edict" by the Kangxi Emperor was released in both Turki and Chinese when printed in Xinjiang by Zuo Zongtang.[260] One of the Shunzhui Emperor's literary works was rendered into Turki and published in Kashgar by Nur Muhammad.[261] Various attempts at publishing and printing were attempted.[262][263]

PopulationEdit

Starting 1760, the Qing dynasty gave large amounts of land to Chinese Hui Muslims and Han Chinese who settled in Dzungaria, while Turkic Muslim Taranchis were also moved into Dzungaria in the Ili region from Aqsu. In the following 60 years, the population of the Tarim Basin swelled to twice its original size during Qing rule.

No permanent settlement was allowed in the Tarim Basin, with only merchants and soldiers being allowed to stay temporarily.[264]

To the 1830s after Jahangir's invasion, Altishahr was open to Han and Hui settlement. Then 19th century rebellions caused the Han population to drop. The demonym "East Turkestan" was used for the area consisting of Uyghuristan (Turfan and Hami) in the northeast and Altishahr or Kashgaria in the southwest.

Various estimates were given by foreign visitors on the entire region's population.

Year Population Notes and sources
Beginning of Qing c.1650 260K (Altishahr) the population was concentrated more towards Kucha's western region
1900 1.015, 1.2, or 2.5 M Kuropatkin,[265] Forsyth, Grennard[266]; other estimates show 300K living in Alitshahr; Uyghuristan in the east had 10% while Kashgaria had 70% of the population.[267]
1920 1.5M Percy Sykes: Almost entirely confined to oases, chiefly Kashgar 300K, Yangi Shahr 200K, Yarkand 200K, and Aksu and Khotan each with 190K inhabitants. The population may be grouped into " settled " and " nomadic," with a small semi-nomadic division. The nomads, together with the semi-nomads, do not aggregate more than 125K in all.[268]
1922 2-3, or 5M Yang Zengxin[266]
1931 6-8M [266]
1933+ 2,900,173 Uyghurs, ?? Han, ?? other [269]
1941 3,730,000 Toops: 65,000 Kirghiz, 92,000 Hui, 326,000 Kazakh, 187,000 Han, and 2,984,000 Uyghur[270]

3,439,000 of which were Muslims; 2,941,000 of those Muslims were Uyghurs (1940s)[271]

Jean Bowie Shor wrote that there were 3,000,000 Uigurs and gave 3,500,000 as the total number of residents in Xinjiang.[272]

1949 4,334,000 Hoppe[270]

1912-1949 Republic eraEdit

 
Turkic conscripts of the 36th division leader by Mazhongying near Kumul.
 
Kuomintang in Xinjiang in 1942

In 1912 the Qing dynasty was replaced by the Republic of China. Yuan Dahua, the last Qing governor of Xinjiang, fled to Siberia. One of his subordinates Yang Zengxin, acceded to the Republic of China in March of the same year, and maintained control of Xinjiang until his assassination in 1928.

The name "Altishahr and Zungharia",[273] "Altisheher-Junghar",[274] "Altishähär-Junghariyä"[275] were used to refer to the region.

The ROC era was characterized by complete chaos in Xinjiang, with East Turkestan separatist movements, Mongolian and Tibetan separatism, Soviet invasions and other western interference, the Japanese invasions in the Second Sino-Japanese War, and just an overall incompetency by the incumbent government of China.

Oirat rebellionsEdit

Legends grew and prophecies circulated among the remaining Oirats that Amursana had not died after he fled to Russia, but was alive and would return to his people to liberate them from Manchu Qing rule and restore the Oirat nation.[276][277]

The Oirat Kalmyk Ja Lama claimed to be a grandson of Amursana and then claimed to be a reincarnation of Amursana himself, preaching anti-Manchu propaganda in western Mongolia in the 1890s and calling for the overthrow of the Qing dynasty.[278] Ja Lama was arrested and deported several times. However, in 1910 he returned to the Oirat Torghuts in Altay (in Dzungaria), and in 1912 he helped the Outer Mongolians mount an attack on the last Qing garrison at Kovd, where the Manchu Amban was refusing to leave and fighting the newly declared independent Mongolian state.[279][280][281][282][283][284] The Manchu Qing force was defeated and slaughtered by the Mongols after Khovd fell.[285][286]

Ja Lama told the Oirat remnants in Xinjiang: "I am a mendicant monk from the Russian Tsar's kingdom, but I am born of the great Mongols. My herds are on the Volga river, my water source is the Irtysh. There are many hero warriors with me. I have many riches. Now I have come to meet with you beggars, you remnants of the Oirats, in the time when the war for power begins. Will you support the enemy? My homeland is Altai, Irtysh, Khobuk-sari, Emil, Bortala, Ili, and Alatai. This is the Oirat mother country. By descent, I am the great-grandson of Amursana, the reincarnation of Mahakala, owning the horse Maralbashi. I am he whom they call the hero Dambijantsan. I came to move my pastures back to my own land, to collect my subject households and bondservants, to give favour, and to move freely."[287][288]

Ja Lama built an Oirat fiefdom centered on Kovd,[289] he and fellow Oirats from Altai wanted to emulate the original Oirat empire and build another grand united Oirat nation from the nomads of western China and Mongolia,[290] but was arrested by Russian Cossacks and deported in 1914 on the request of the Monglian government after the local Mongols complained of his excesses, and out of fear that he would create an Oirat separatist state and divide them from the Khalkha Mongols.[291] Ja Lama returned in 1918 to Mongolia and resumed his activities and supported himself by extorting passing caravans,[292][293][294] but was assassinated in 1922 on the orders of the new Communist Mongolian authorities under Damdin Sükhbaatar.[295][296][297]

Mongolian separatismEdit

Mongols have at times advocated for the historical Oirat Dzungar Mongol area of Dzungaria in northern Xinjiang to be annexed to the Mongolian state in the name of Pan-Mongolism.

In 1918 the part Buryat Mongol Transbaikalian Cossack Ataman Grigory Semyonov declared a "Great Mongol State" and had designs to unify the Oirat Mongol lands, portions of Xinjiang, Transbaikal, Inner Mongolia, Outer Mongolia, Tannu Uriankhai, Khovd, Hu-lun-pei-erh and Tibet into one.[298]

The Buryat Mongol Agvan Dorzhiev tried advocating for Oirat Mongol areas like Tarbagatai, Ili, and Altai to get added to the Outer Mongolian state.[299] Out of concern that China would be provoked, this proposed addition of the Oirat Dzungaria to the new Outer Mongolian state was rejected by the Soviets.[300]

Uyghur violence against Christians and HindusEdit

Uyghur Muslims rioted against Indian Hindu traders when the Hindus attempted to practice their religious affairs in public. They Uyghurs also attacked the Swedish Christian mission in 1907.[301]

An anti-Christian mob broke out among the Muslims in Kashgar against the Swedish missionaries in 1923.[302]

In the name of Islam, the Uyghur leader Abdullah Bughra violently physically assaulted the Yarkand-based Swedish missionaries and would have executed them, except they were only banished due to the British Aqsaqal's intercession in their favor.[303]

During the 1930s Kumul Rebellion in Xinjiang, Buddhist murals were deliberately vandalized by Muslims.[304]

Xinjiang warsEdit

First ETREdit

Following insurgencies against Governor Jin Shuren in the early 1930s, a rebellion in Kashgar led to the establishment of the short-lived First East Turkistan Republic (First ETR) in 1933. The ETR claimed authority around the Tarim Basin from Aksu in the north to Khotan in the south, and was suppressed by the armies of the Chinese Muslim warlord Ma Zhongying in 1934.

The Chinese in Kashgar had mistresses and wives who were Turkic. On 3 May 1933, the Kyrgyz people murdered these Turkic women and 100 Chinese and also pillaged the city in the Battle of Kashgar (1933).[305]

In 1933, Sheng Shicai, a Chinese warlord, seized control of Xinjiang with support from the Soviet Union, which helped him defeat Ma Zhongying. Sheng ruled the region for a decade during which he permitted greater Soviet influence on Xinjiang's ethnic, economic and security policies.

In 1936, after Sheng Shicai expelled 30,000 Kazakhs from Xinjiang to Qinghai, Hui led by General Ma Bufang massacred their fellow Muslim Kazakhs, until there were 135 of them left.[306][307][308]

From Northern Xinjiang over 7,000 Kazakhs fled to the Tibetan-Qinghai plateau region via Gansu and were wreaking massive havoc so Ma Bufang solved the problem by relegating the Kazakhs into designated pastureland in Qinghai, but Hui, Tibetans, and Kazakhs in the region continued to clash against each other.[309]

Tibetans attacked and fought against the Kazakhs as they entered Tibet via Gansu and Qinghai.

In northern Tibet Kazakhs clashed with Tibetan soldiers and then the Kazakhs were sent to Ladakh.[310]

Tibetan troops robbed and killed Kazakhs 400 miles east of Lhasa at Chamdo when the Kazakhs were entering Tibet.[311][312]

In 1934–1938 from Qumil Eliqsan led the Kerey Kazakhs to migrate to Gansu and Qinghai; the number was estimated at 18,000.[313]

Second ETREdit

Sheng invited a group of Chinese Communists to Xinjiang including Mao Zedong's brother Mao Zemin, but in 1943, fearing a conspiracy against him, Sheng killed all the Chinese Communists, including Mao Zemin. In the summer of 1944, during the Ili Rebellion, a Second East Turkistan Republic (Second ETR) was established, this time with Soviet support, in what is now Ili Kazakh Autonomous Prefecture in northern Xinjiang.

The Three Districts Revolution, as it is known in China, threatened the Nationalist provincial government in Ürümqi. Sheng Shicai fell from power and Zhang Zhizhong was sent from Nanjing to negotiate a truce with the Second ETR and the USSR. An uneasy coalition provincial government was formed and brought nominal unity to Xinjiang with separate administrations.

The coalition government came to an end at the conclusion of the Chinese Civil War when the victorious Chinese Communists entered Xinjiang in 1949. The leadership of the Second ETR was persuaded by the Soviet Union to negotiate with the Chinese Communists. Most were killed in an airplane crash en route to a peace conference in Beijing in late August. The remaining leadership under Saifuddin Azizi agreed to join the newly founded People's Republic of China. The Nationalist military commanders in Xinjiang, Tao Zhiyue and provincial governor Burhan Shahidis surrendered to the People's Liberation Army (PLA) in September. Kazak militias under Osman Batur resisted the PLA into the early 1950s. The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the PRC was established on 1 October 1955, replacing Xinjiang Province.

Intermarriages between Han and UyghursEdit

In Urumqi (Uyghur) Muslim women who married Han Chinese men were assaulted, seized, and kidnapped by hordes of (Uyghur) Muslims on 11 July 1947. Old (Uyghur) Muslim men forcibly married the women. In response to the chaos a curfew was placed at 11 p.m.[314]

The marriages between Muslim (Uyghur) women and Han Chinese men infuriated the Uyghur leader Isa Yusuf Alptekin.[315]

Mixed Han-Uyghur partners were pressured to leave their parents and sometimes Xinjiang entirely. During the Republic era from 1911–1949, Han military generals were pursued and wooed by Uyghur women. In 1949 when the Communists took over, the Uyghur population branded such women as milliy munapiq (ethnic scum), threatening and coercing them in accompanying their Han partners in moving to Taiwan and "China proper." Uyghur parents warned such women not to return any of their children, male or female, to Xinjiang after moving to "China proper" for attending educational institutions. This was so they could avoid ostracism and condemnation from their fellow Uyghurs. A case where a Han male dating a Uyghur woman and then a Han man and her elder sister incited the Uyghur community to condemn and harass her mother.[316]

Modern China: People's RepublicEdit

During the Ili Rebellion the Soviet Union backed Uyghur separatists to form the Second East Turkistan Republic (2nd ETR) from 1944 to 1949 in what is now Ili Kazakh Autonomous Prefecture (Ili, Tarbagatay and Altay Districts) in northern Xinjiang while the majority of Xinjiang was under Republic of China Kuomintang control.[317] The People's Liberation Army entered Xinjiang in 1949 and the Kuomintang commander Tao Zhiyue surrendered the province to them.[318] Five ETR leaders who were to negotiate with the Chinese over the ETR's sovereignty died in an air crash in 1949 in Soviet airspace over the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic.[319]

According to the PRC, the 2nd ETR was Xinjiang's revolution, a positive part of the communist revolution in China; the 2nd ETR acceded to and 'welcomed' the PLA when it entered Xinjiang, a process known as the Incorporation of Xinjiang into the People's Republic of China.

Uyghur nationalists often incorrectly claim that 5% of Xinjiang's population in 1949 was Han, and that the other 95% was Uyghur, erasing the presence of Kazakhs, Xibes, etc., and ignoring the fact that Hans were around one third of Xinjiang's population at 1800, during the Qing Dynasty.[320]

The autonomous region was established on 1 October 1955.[318] In 1955 (the first modern census in China was taken in 1953), Uyghurs were counted as 73% of Xinjiang's total population of 5.11 million.[321] Although Xinjiang as a whole is designated as a "Uyghur Autonomous Region", since 1954 more than 50% of Xinjiang's land area are designated autonomous areas for 13 native non-Uyghur groups.[322] The modern Uyghur people experienced ethnogenesis especially since 1955, when the PRC officially recognized their ethnic category—distinct from the Han—of formerly separately self-identified oasis peoples.[323]

The PRC's first nuclear test was carried out at Lop Nur, Xinjiang, on 16 October 1964. Japanese physicist Jun Takada, known for prominently opposing the tests as "the Devil's conduct" speculated that between 100,000 and 200,000 people may have been killed due to the consequential radiation. According to the Scientific American article, Jun Takada was not allowed into China. Moreover he 'studied radiation effects from tests conducted by the U.S., the former Soviet Union and France'.[324] However the Lop Nur area has not been permanently inhabited since the 1920s.[325] This is because it is located between the Taklamakan and Kumtag deserts in Ruoqiang County, which has an area of almost 200,000 km2 (77,000 sq mi) with a population density of only 0.16/km2. Furthermore Chinese media rejected Takada's conclusion.[326]

Han re-migration into the regionEdit

The PRC has stimulated Han migration into the sparsely populated Dzungaria (Dzungar Basin). Before 1953 most of Xinjiang's population (75%) lived in the Tarim Basin, so the new Han migrants changed the distribution of population between Dzungaria and the Tarim.[327][328][329] Most new Chinese migrants ended up in the northern region Dzungaria.[330] Han and Hui made up the majority of the population in Dzungaria's cities while Uighurs made up most of the population in the Tarim's Kashgarian cities.[331] Eastern and Central Dzungaria are the specific areas where these Han and Hui are concentrated.[332]

China made sure that new Han migrants were settled in entirely new areas uninhabited by Uyghurs so as to not disturb the already existing Uyghur communities.[333] This has continued Han migrations into the region that have restarted with the Qing in the 17th century, and by the Tang and Han millennia before.[334]

Both Han economic migrants from other parts of China and Uyghur economic migrants from southern Xinjiang have been flooding into northern Xinjiang since the 1980s.[335]

Southern Xinjiang is where the majority of the Uyghur population resides, while it is in Northern Xinjiang cities where the majority of the Han (90%) population of Xinjiang reside.[336] Southern Xinjiang is dominated by its nine million Uighur majority population, while northern Xinjiang is where the mostly urban Han population holds sway.[337] This situation has been followed by an imbalance in the economic situation between the two ethnic groups, since the Northern Junghar Basin (Dzungaria) has been more developed than the Uighur south.[338]

Between 1950-1970s, 92% of migrants to Xinjiang were Han and 8% were Hui. Most of these migrants were unorganized settlers as they are still now, coming from neighboring Gansu province to seek trading opportunities.[339]

During the Great Chinese Famine (1958–1961), Xinjiang experienced a great emigration of residents both to the Soviet Union and to East China.

In the 1980s, 90% of Xinjiang Han lived in north Xinjiang (Jiangbei, historical Dzungaria). In the mid-1990s, Uyghurs consisted of 90% of south Xinjiang (Nanjiang, historical Tarim)'s population.[339] In 1980, the liberal reformist Hu Yaobang announced the expulsion of ethnic Han cadres in Xinjiang to eastern China. Hu was purged in 1987 for a series of demonstrations that he is said to have provoked in other areas of China. The prominent Xinjiang and national official Wang Zhen criticized Hu for destroying Xinjiang Han cadres' "sense of security", and for exacerbating ethnic tensions.[340]

In the 1990s, there was a net inflow of Han people to Xinjiang, many of whom were previously prevented from moving because of the declining number of social services tied to hukou (residency permits).[341] As of 1996, 13.6% of Xinjiang's population was employed by the publicly traded Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (Bingtuan) corporation. 90% of the Bingtuan's activities relate to agriculture, and 88% of Bingtuan employees are Han, although the percentage of Hans with ties to the Bingtuan has decreased.[342] Han emigration from Xinjiang has also resulted in an increase of minority-identified agricultural workers as a total percentage of Xinjiang's farmers, from 69.4% in 1982 to 76.7% in 1990.[343] During the 1990s, about 1.2 million temporary migrants entered Xinjiang every year to stay for the cotton picking season.[344] Many Uyghur trading communities exist outside of Xinjiang; the largest in Beijing is one village of a few thousand.[344]

In 2000, Uyghurs "comprised 45 per cent of Xinjiang's population, but only 12.8 per cent of Urumqi's population." Despite having 9% of Xinjiang's population, Urumqi accounts for 25% of the region's GDP, and many rural Uyghurs have been migrating to that city to seek work in the dominant light, heavy, and petrochemical industries.[345] Hans in Xinjiang are demographically older, better-educated, and work in higher-paying professions. Hans are more likely to cite business reasons for moving to Urumqi, while some Uyghurs also cite trouble with the law back home and family reasons.[346]

Hans and Uyghurs are equally represented in Urumqi's floating population that works mostly in commerce. Self-segregation within the city is widespread, in terms of residential concentration, employment relationships, and a social norm of endogamy.[347] As of 2010, Uyghurs constitute a majority in the Tarim Basin, and a mere plurality in Xinjiang as a whole.[348] For example as mentioned Han and Hui mostly live in northern Xinjiang (Dzungaria), and are separated from areas of historical Uyghur dominance south of the Tian Shan mountains (southwestern Xinjiang), where Uyghurs account for about 90% of the population.[349]

Uyghur is the dominant language in southern Xinjiang while Mandarin is the dominant language in northern Xinjiang.[350]

Soviet Cold War propagandaEdit

The Soviet Union supported Uyghur nationalist propaganda and Uyghur separatist movements against China. The Soviets incited separatist activities in Xinjiang through propaganda, encouraging Kazakhs to flee to the Soviet Union and attack China. China responded by reinforcing the Xinjiang-Soviet border area specifically with Han Bingtuan militia and farmers.[351] Since 1967 the Soviets intensified their broadcasts inciting Uyghurs to revolt against the Chinese via Radio Tashkent and directly harbored and supported separatist guerilla fighters to attack the Chinese border. In 1966 the number of Soviet sponsored separatist attacks on China numbered 5,000.[352]

On 14 May 1967 the Soviets transmitted a Radio Tashkent broadcast into Xinjiang, boasting of the fact that the Soviets had supported the Second East Turkestan Republic against China.[353] Other Soviet media outlets disseminated propaganda towards Uyghurs urging that they proclaim independence and revolt against China. These include the Radio Alma-Ata and the Alma-Ata published Sherki Türkistan Evazi ("The Voice of Eastern Turkestan") newspaper.[354]

After the Sino-Soviet split in 1962, over 60,000 Uyghurs and Kazakhs defected from Xinjiang to the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic, in response to Soviet propaganda which promised Xinjiang independence. Uyghur exiles later threatened China with rumors of a Uyghur "liberation army" in the thousands that were supposedly recruited from Sovietized emigres.[355]

In 1968 the Soviet Union was involved in funding and supporting the East Turkestan People's Revolutionary Party (ETPRP), the largest militant Uyghur separatist organization in its time, to start a violent uprising against China.[356][357][358][359][360] In the 1970s, the Soviets also supported the United Revolutionary Front of East Turkestan (URFET) to fight against the Chinese.[361]

In 1966-67 "bloody incidents" flared up as Chinese and Soviet forces clashed along the border. The Soviets trained anti-Chinese guerillas and urged Uyghurs to revolt against China, hailing their "national liberation struggle".[362] In 1969, Chinese and Soviet forces directly fought each other along the Xinjiang-Soviet border.[363][364][365][366]

A chain of aggressive and belligerent press releases in the 1990s making false claims about violent insurrections in Xinjiang, and exaggerating both the number of Chinese migrants and the total number of Uyghurs in Xinjiang were made by the former Soviet supported URFET leader Yusupbek Mukhlisi.[367][368]

Cultural war and propaganda written by scholarsEdit

Contrary to genetic evidence, Soviet historians claimed that the Uyghur native land was Xinjiang. Uyghur nationalism was promoted by Soviet versions of history on Turkology.[369] Soviet Turkologists like D.I. Tikhonov wrote pro-independence works on Uyghur history and the Soviet supported Uyghur historian Tursun Rakhimov wrote more historical works supporting Uyghur independence and attacking the Chinese government, claiming that Xinjiang was an entity created by China made out of the different parts of East Turkestan and Dzungaria.[370]

These Soviet Uyghur historians were waging an "ideological war" against China, emphasizing the "national liberation movement" of Uyghurs throughout history.[371] The Soviet Communist Party supported the publication of works which glorified the Second East Turkestan Republic and the Ili Rebellion against China in its anti-China propaganda war.[372] Soviet propaganda writers wrote works claiming that Uyghurs lived better lives and were able to practice their culture only in Soviet Central Asia and not in Xinjiang.[373] In 1979 Soviet KGB agent Victor Louis wrote a thesis claiming that the Soviets should support a "war of liberation" against the "imperial" China to support Uighur, Tibetan, Mongol, and Manchu independence.[374][375] The Soviet KGB itself supported Uyghur separatists against China.[376]

Uyghur nationalist historian Turghun Almas and his book Uyghurlar (The Uyghurs) and Uyghur nationalist accounts of history were galvanized by Soviet stances on history, "firmly grounded" in Soviet Turcological works, and both heavily influenced and partially created by Soviet historians and Soviet works on Turkic peoples.[377] Soviet historiography spawned the rendering of Uyghur history found in Uyghurlar.[378] Almas claimed that Central Asia was "the motherland of the Uyghurs" and also the "ancient golden cradle of world culture".[379]

Chinese responseEdit

Xinjiang's importance to China increased after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, leading to China's perception of being encircled by the Soviets.[380] The China supported the Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet invasion, and broadcast reports of Soviet atrocities on Afghan Muslims to Uyghurs in order to counter Soviet propaganda broadcasts into Xinjiang, which boasted that Soviet minorities lived better and incited Muslims to revolt.[381] Chinese radio beamed anti-Soviet broadcasts to Central Asian ethnic minorities like the Kazakhs.[363]

The Soviets feared disloyalty among the non-Russian Kazakh, Uzbek, and Kyrgyz in the event of Chinese troops attacking the Soviet Union and entering Central Asia. Russians were goaded with the taunt "Just wait till the Chinese get here, they'll show you what's what!" by Central Asians when they had altercations.[382]

The Chinese authorities viewed the Han migrants in Xinjiang as vital to defending the area against the Soviet Union.[383] China opened up camps to train the Afghan Mujahideen near Kashgar and Khotan and supplied them with hundreds of millions of dollars worth of small arms, rockets, mines, and anti-tank weapons.[384][385]

Terrorism in XinjiangEdit

Since the late 1970s Chinese economic reform exacerbated uneven regional development, more Uyghurs have migrated to Xinjiang cities and some Hans have also migrated to Xinjiang for independent economic advancement. Increased ethnic contact and labor competition coincided with Uyghur separatist terrorism from the 1990s, such as the 1997 Ürümqi bus bombings.[386]

After a number of student demonstrations in the 1980s, the Baren Township riot of April 1990 led to more than 20 deaths.[387]

1997 saw the Ghulja Incident and Urumqi bus bombs,[388] while police continue to battle with religious separatists from the East Turkestan Islamic Movement.

Recent incidents include the 2007 Xinjiang raid,[389] a thwarted 2008 suicide bombing attempt on a China Southern Airlines flight,[390] and the 2008 Xinjiang attack which resulted in the deaths of sixteen police officers four days before the Beijing Olympics.[391][392] Further incidents include the July 2009 Ürümqi riots, the September 2009 Xinjiang unrest, and the 2010 Aksu bombing that led to the trials of 376 people.[393] In 2013 and 2014 a series of attacks on railway stations and a market, which claimed the lives of 70 people, and wounded hundreds more, resulted in a 12-month government clampdown. Two mass sentencing trials involving 94 people convicted of terrorism charges, resulted in three receiving death sentences, and the others lengthy jail terms.[394]

PoliticsEdit

Han Youwen, a Salar general, once served as vice chairman of Xinjiang.

DemographicsEdit

Manchu, Daur, Tartar, Tajik, Xibo, Uzbeks, Russians, Kirgiz, Hui, Mongols, Kazakhs, Han, and Uyghur make up the ethniciites in Xinjiang, the Uyghur population has grown along with the Kazakh, there were 1.3 million Kazakhs and 8.4 million Uyghurs in 2001, an increase from 900,000 Kazakhs and 6 million Uyghurs in 1982, which was an increase from 500,000 Kazakhs and 4 million Uyghurs in the 1960s, there had been a declining death rate for child birth and diseases have been checked by advanced medical care, helping Xinjiang's population growth, and China does not strictly apply birth control to the area.[395]

There was a 1.7 growth in the Uyghur population in Xinjiang while there was a 4.4% growth from 1940-1982 in the Hui population in Xinjiang. Uyghur Muslims and Hui Muslims have experienced a growth in major tensions against each other due to the Hui population surging in its growth. Some old Uyghurs in Kashgar remember that the Hui army at the Battle of Kashgar (1934) massacred 2,000 to 8,000 Uyghurs, which caused tension as more Hui moved into Kashgar from other parts of China.[396] Some Hui criticize Uyghur separatism, Dru C. Gladney said the Hui "don't tend to get too involved in international Islamic conflict, They don't want to be branded as radical Muslims."[397][398] Hui and Uyghur live separately, attending different mosques.[399]

In recent years, Xinjiang has been a focal point of ethnic and other tensions.[400][401]

Underaged marriage, STDs, drugsEdit

If girls below the marriage age were illegally wedded Uyghur men, prison sentences were handed out to them.[402]

The "Doğu Türkistan Bülteni Haber Ajansı" which supports the Turkistan Islamic Party, claimed that the AIDS virus was being used against Uyghurs.[403][404][405][406]

Fundamentalist Islamists prevent Uyghur women who are infected with HIV from getting drugs for their condition.[407]

Hui Muslim drug dealers are accused by Uyghurs of pushing heroin on Uyghurs.[408] Heroin has been vended by Hui dealers.[409] There is a typecast image in the public eye of heroin being the province of Hui dealers.[410] Hui have been involved in the Golden Triangle drug area.[411]

EducationEdit

From 1949 to 2001, education has expanded greatly in the region, with 6,221 primary schools up from 1,335; 1,929 middle schools up from 9, and institutions of higher learning at 21, up from 1. The illiteracy rate for young and middle-age people has decreased to less than 2%. Agricultural science has made inroads into the region, as well as innovative methods of road construction in the desert.

Culturally, Xinjiang maintains 81 public libraries and 23 museums, compared to none of each in 1949, and Xinjiang has 98 newspapers in 44 languages, up from 4 newspapers in 1952. According to official statistics, the ratios of doctors, medical workers, medical clinics, and hospital beds to people surpass the national average, and immunization rates have reached 85%.[412]

IntermarriageEdit

Many Uyghurs oppose mixed race marriages.

A 28 year old mixed race woman named Amy whose father was Han and whose mother was Uyghur was interviewed by The Atlantic and she spoke of being estranged from Uyghurs and viewed Uyghur men's appearances negatively.[413] After a Han Chinese man named Xiaohe and a Uyghur woman named Aygul married, the Uyghur women was physically assaulted by her father. A Uyghur family cut off their daughter, a Uyghur woman Ahman who had a Han Chinese husband named Ming. When she had a Han Chinese boyfriend in school her fellow Uyghurs violently assaulted her. Uyghurs are often angered and shun inter-ethnic families with Han men and Uyghur women. These interethnic pairs fled Xinjiang to Beijing.[414]

Exceptions through general opposition to intermarriage could take place in event of the Han converting to Islam or the Uyghur and Han partners moving away to another location.[415]

StatisticsEdit

Although currently Uyghurs have an extremely low intermarriage overall, Dr. Joanne Smith Finley wrote that there is tiny rise in marriages between Han men and Uyghur women. Moreover out of all ethnic groups, ahead of Hui and Kazakhs, Han is the one whom Uyghurs marry with the most within their total small rate of intermarriage. Uyghur females married out more than Uyghur males at 0.46% to 0.2%, with Uyghur males being the least likely people to intermarry in Xinjiang.[416] Multiple studies and interviews confirm that the current prevalent form of intermarriage between Han and Uyghur is Han men being taken as husbands by Uyghur women.[417]

ObstaclesEdit

Family relatives who object to interracial marriages of their relatives often lead to lasting difficulties, with relatives pressuring the marriage not to take place or forcing the couple to be estranged from the family.[418] Many interracial couples face the prospect of being disowned by their parents and cut off if they intermarried, while some couples, in the face of opposition, chose to run off with their partners.[419] Uyghur parents have cut off their kids or told them to stay away from Xinjiang if their kids married Han after going to the East coast to pursue their education. Some interracial couples had secret marriages to hide from their relatives and parents in Ghulja.[420]

Dr. Joanne Smith Finley interviewed Uyghur youth and found that Uyghur parents often pressure their children, daughters and sons, not to intermarry. The reactions from their children are mixed, with some Uyghurs like Mälikä and Aygül saying they would have to obey their parents and split up from their Han partner, while other Uyghurs said they would abscond like a 20 year old Uyghur woman named Gülshäm who said she would run off with a Han if the relationship was not allowed by her father.[421]

A 15 year old Uyghur boy naked Burkhan rejected the idea of marrying a Han female and told Dr. Smith Finley that he would be totally shunned by his fellow Uyghurs if he did it, while a 20 year old Uyghur woman named Gülshäm said that she was open to marriage with Han. She cheered on mixed couples as courageous, condemning her fellow Uyghurs for their harsh opposition to intermarriage. After Gülshäm brought up the subject of dating a Han boyfriend with a female friend, her friend then threatened violence against her if she ever dated a Han.[422]

Communities in which there have been racial conflict may put negative pressure on interracial couples and act as an impediment to them.[423] Conflict and war between different races leads to community prejudice against couples consisting of the two different races.[424] When intermarriage takes place with a reviled ethnicity, families may disown their children for doing it.[425] War and conflict between different peoples can hinder intermarriage between them.[426]

Conversion to IslamEdit

Han and Hui intermarry with each other much more than Hui do with Uyghurs. Marriage with Hui is detested by many Uyghurs even though they are both Muslims. according to Uyghurs, Hui marriages with Uyghur frequently break apart and end in divorce.[427]

Still religion plays a role at restricting marriages between non-Muslims and Muslims.[428] And Muslims pressure men who marry into their community to convert to Islam.[429]

A number of Uyghur parents demand Han males and females who want to marry their daughters or sons convert to Islam. It was reported that there were many conversions to Islam by Han males who married Uyghur women by a Uyghur man, Nurmämät who was interviewed by Dr. Smith Finley.[430]

Becoming a Muslim results in more acceptance among Uyghurs of Han spouses. A case in Urumqi of a Han male who converted to Islam and married a Uyghur woman, was reported by an 18 year old Uyghur male, Ömär, who lived in the same area as the man and voiced the approval of the Uyghur community. The man adopted doppa hat, went to the mosque to pray and changed his name to Jümäkhun and was accepted as a real Muslim. Another case of a Han woman converting to Islam to marry a Uyghur was viewed with suspicion since the Uyghurs suspected her of faking the conversion. She did not integrate with the Uyghur community at all.[431]

Mixed children "Erzhuanzi"Edit

Children who are of mixed Han and Uyghur ethnicities are known as erzhuanzi (二转子) and Uyghurs call them piryotki.[432] They are shunned by Uyghurs at social gatherings and events.[433]

ParentsEdit

In one interview the majority of Uyghur men viewed Han Chinese women as physically unattractive. None of them were dating Han women and had no desire to, viewing them as alien and "too skinny." Howeverthey said they were attracted to Turkish and Russian actresses.

Han parents in turn were negative towards Uyghur men and believed that women would suffer abuse at the hands of a Uyghur spouse.[434] Han youth were more open to interracial dating and Han parents, both mothers and fathers were more willing to let their sons date Uyghur girls while they object to their daughters dating Uyghur boys since they believe their girls would be in danger.[435]

Most Uyghurs in both Xinjiang and in Han-majority cities Shenzhen, Shanghai, and Beijing, desire that their son marry with fellow Uyghurs to preserve their culture. A Uyghur man interviewed in Urumqi expressed his willingness to let a Han man marry his daughter, but wanted his son to marry another Uyghur.[436]

DatingEdit

Interracial dating is prevalent among Han people and "Chinese Uighur" (assimilated Uyghurs who speak Mandarin). One government employee Uyghur man interviewed said he does not anticipate a Han marrying his daughter but would not object to it if she wanted to. Another Uyghur man said he would not allow a Han woman to date his son because his descendants would not be raised as Uyghur,[437] but he would approve of his son marrying Kazakh or Russian girls.[438]

A psychotherapist treated a Han Chinese named Wang Minxing who was married to a taller Uyghur woman named Ayi Guli. She became a partner in his furniture manufacturing company and aborted two children they had together before they married. After they married she did not abort when she became pregnant a third time.[439] Wang wanted a son and as a minority Ayi was exempt from the then one-child policy, so she was allowed to give birth to another child. But Ayi later became a businesswoman to escape this patriarchal child bearing role.[440]

21st century, terrorism, Al-QaedaEdit

There have been some terrorist attacks and ethnic riots in Xinjiang during the PRC period. The PRC's main goal in Xinjiang has been to develop the region economically and stamp out terrorist separatist movements, especially those linked with Al-Qaeda and ISIS that have also murdered innocent civilians in the US and Europe.

Whereas some riots may suggest Uyghur ethnic minority dissatisfaction, conversely Han Chinese are treated as second class citizens by PRC policies, in which many of the ethnic autonomy policies are discriminatory against them[441] (see Affirmative action in China and autonomous entities of China). Xinjiang was also part of previous Chinese dynasties before the Uyghur Khaganate. Independence advocates view Chinese rule in Xinjiang, and policies like the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps as Chinese imperialism.

List of conflicts and terrorist attacksEdit

In the 1980s there was a scattering of student demonstrations and riots against police action that took on an ethnic aspect; and the Baren Township riot in April, 1990, an abortive uprising, resulted in more than 50 deaths.

A police round-up and execution of 30 suspected separatists[442] during Ramadan resulted in large demonstrations in February 1997 which were characterized as riots in the Chinese state media.[443][444] These demonstrations culminated in the Gulja Incident on 5 February, where a PLA crackdown on the demonstrations led to at least 9 deaths and perhaps more than 100.[445][442] The Ürümqi bus bombs of 25 February 1997, killed 9 and injured 68. The situation in Xinjiang was relatively quiet from the late nineties through mid-2006, though inter-ethnic tensions no doubt remained.[446]

Recent incidents include the 2007 Xinjiang raid,[447] a thwarted 2008 suicide bombing attempt on a China Southern Airlines flight,[448] and the 2008 Xinjiang attack which resulted in the deaths of sixteen police officers four days before the Beijing Olympics.[449][450] Further incidents include the July 2009 Ürümqi riots, the September 2009 Xinjiang unrest, and the 2010 Aksu bombing that led to the trials of 376 people.[451] The 2011 Hotan attack in July led to the deaths of 18 civilians. Although all of the attackers were Uyghur,[452] both Han and Uyghur people were victims.[453]

Uyghur Muslim opposition to a Buddhist Aspara statue in Ürümqi in Xinjiang was cited as a possible reason for its destruction in 2012.[454][455] A Muslim Kazakh viewed a giant Buddha statue near Ürümqi as "alien cultural symbols".[456]

Al Qaeda and TIPEdit

The East Turkestan Islamic Movement (Turkistan Islamic Party or TIP) is allied with the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan[457] along with the Pakistani Taliban (Tehreek i Taliban Pakistan)[458] and Al-Qaeda.[459][460]

Al Qaeda appointed TIP (ETIM) member Abdul Haq al Turkistani to their Shura Majlis.[461] Al Qaeda also appointed TIP (ETIM) member Abdul Shakoor Turkistani as military commander of their forces in the FATA region of Pakistan.[462]

TIP (ETIM) issued a eulogy for Doku Umarov of the Caucasian Emirate upon his death.[463][464][465]

Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri released a statement supporting Jihad in Xinjiang against Chinese, in the Caucasus against the Russians and naming Somalia, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan as places of warfare.[466] Zawahiri endorsed "jihad to liberate every span of land of the Muslims that has been usurped and violated, from Kashgar to Andalusia, and from the Caucasus to Somalia and Central Africa".[467] Uyghurs inhabit Kashgar, the city which was mentioned by Zawahiri.[468]

TIP (ETIM) sent the "Turkistan Brigade" (Katibat Turkistani) to take part in the Syrian Civil War,[469] most noticeably in the 2015 Jisr al-Shughur offensive.[470][471][472][473] TIP (ETIM) members in Syria fight alongside the Al-Qaeda branch Al Nusrah Front since TIP is allied to Al-Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan and conducted suicide bombings for Nusrah Front.[474] Members of TIP have been killed in battle in Syria.[475]

TIP (ETIM) eulogized and applauded members of its organization who participated in suicide bombings and members who were killed in action in Jisr al Shughur.[476] Members of the group helped other Jihadists enforce religious law in Idlib such as wrecking alcohol in stores and this was noted that with "support of Allah and by the strike of the fist of the Mujahideen from the Al Nusrah Front, Ahrar al Sham and Turkistan," that they undertook these actions by a Syrian Jihadist in Jaysh al Fateh.[477][478]

The spokesman of Jabhat Al-Nusra Abu Maria al-Qahtani claimed that Muslims were "oppressed" in "Turkestan" and that Nusra needs to "defend" them.[479][480] TIP (ETIM) joined in on the Jihadist offensive in the Al-Ghab plain along with Al-Qaeda affiliated Jund al Aqsa against the Syrian army, referring to the Syrian army by the disparaging name "Nusayri".[481][482][483]

In Idlib four villages were seized by the Turkistan Islamic Party around August 2015.[484] And the TIP said they "met with the brothers in Jund al Aqsa".[485] The TIP and Jabhat Al-Nusra launched a joint operation which overran the Syrian military's Abu Dhuhur airbase.[486][487][488] The Turkistan Islamic Party released photos of their Uyghur fighters at Abu Dhuhur.[489][490][491][492][493]

At Abu Dhuhur, Sheikh Muhaysini (an Al-Qaeda linked Saudi cleric) took pictures with TIP.[494] Media of TIP's fighters in Syria, and Syrian regime military prisoners from Abu Dhuhur were released.[495][496][497]

A mass execution of 56 captured Syrian soldiers was carried out by the Turkestan Islamic Party along with Jabhat al-Nusra at Abu al-Duhur.[498][499][500][501][502][503][504][505]

One of Sayfullakh Shishani's fighters in Jabhat al-Nusra claimed that a united faction called al-Muhajireen was formed out of the unification of the Uyghur Turkistan, Uzbek Abu Salyaha and Al-Bukhari, Ahlu Sunnah wal-Jama'a, and Jaish al-Muhajireen wal Ansar.[506]

Katiba Turkistan joined with Ahrar al-Sham, Jabhat al-Nusra, and Junud al-Sham against the Syrian army in the battle for Jisr al-Shughur.[507]

Syrian Churches have been demolished by Turkistan Islamic Party Uyghur fighters, who exalted in the acts of destruction, and in Homs and Idlib battlefields the Turkistan Islamic Party cooperated with Uzbek brigades and Jabhat al-Nusra, Jabhat al-Nusra and IS (ISIL) compete with each other to recruit Uyghur fighters.[508]

Al-Qaeda attacks in ChinaEdit

Turkish connections were used by Uyghur fighters to go into Syria and the humanitarian Uyghur Eastern Turkistan Education and Solidarity Association (ETESA) which is located in Turkey sent Uyghurs into Syria, endorsed the killing of the pro-China Imam Juma Tayir, applauded attacks in China, and posted on its website content from the TIP.[509]

Al-Qaeda included an article in its magazine "resurgence" promoting East Turkestan Independence titled "Did You Know? 10 Facts About East Turkistan", the article was ridden with errors and false claims such as claiming Quranic education was banned, and included other claims such as "East Turkistan has never been a part of China" and it was "independent of China for more than 1,800 years", "In 1949, 93 percent of the population of East Turkistan was Uyghur (Turk Muslims) while 7 percent was Chinese", and that "After the Communist takeover in 1949, more than 4.5 million Turkish Muslims were killed by the Communist government", with Al-Qaeda calling for the "occupied Muslim land" "East Turkistan" to be "recovered [into] the shade of the Islamic Caliphate".[510]

As part of an effort to reach out to foreign Muslims, on the Ink of Swords (Medad al-Sayouf) Network, an Arabic language magazine titled "Islamic Turkistan" (Turkistan al-Islamia) was issued by ETIM in January 2009 and it described ETIM as "a group of workers for Islam and the mujahideen in the Cause of Allah in order to liberate Turkistan", and said that the aim of ETIM was to "establish an Islamic Caliphate in the light of the Book and the Sunnah", "in the Cause of Allah, promotion of virtue, prevention of vice, and the call to Allah.", to create an Islamic State by means of jihad.[511]

Fellow Al-Qaeda aligned Islamist organizations with the aim of a worldwide Islamic Caliphate cooperate with TIP (ETIM) whose own goal is an Islamic State, with TIP fighting against the militaries of Syria and Pakistan in addition to China and being assisted by Central Asian, Gulf, European, and North American based outfits and the TIP leader Abdullah Mansour used the words "mujahideen" and "jihadi operation" in a Uighur language video produced by TIP's Islam Awazi (ئىسلام ئاۋازى) Media Center when TIP took responsibility for the 29 October 2013 Tianmen Square terrorist attack.[512]

More Terrorist propagandaEdit

Islam Awazi released a video called "We Are Coming O Buddhists" (نحن قادمون أيّها البوذيون) of a TIP affiliated Uyghur cleric named Sheikh Abu Dhar 'Azzam. He called for the killing of Buddhists in addition to Chinese, saying in Arabic:

"We are Muslims, and you are our enemies oh Buddhists and Chinese: You will not see us and killing you, and spilling your blood, and cutting your heads of: all of it is good, insha Allah" ( نحن مسلمون، ولو كنتم أعداءنا أيُّها البوذيون والصينيون: لن تروا منا إلا خيرًا، وقتلكم وإسالة دمائكم، وقطع رؤوسكم: كله خير إن شاء الله.ـ)

On 24 February 2014, he also said

"we are a nation that loves death while you are a nation that loves wine and women, and we are coming insha Allah, we want to kill Buddhists to the east of this land and to the west of it". ( إننا قوم نحب الموت كما تحبون الخمر والنساء، وإننا قادمون إن شاء الله، نحن نريد أن نقتل البوذيين في شرق الأرض وغربها.ـ).[513][514]

The Hadith collection Sahih al-Bukhari records a Sahih Hadith by Muhammad on the Turks:

Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Turks; people with small eyes, red faces, and flat noses. Their faces will look like shields coated with leather. The Hour will not be established till you fight with people whose shoes are made of hair." (حَدَّثَنَا سَعِيدُ بْنُ مُحَمَّدٍ، حَدَّثَنَا يَعْقُوبُ، حَدَّثَنَا أَبِي، عَنْ صَالِحٍ، عَنِ الأَعْرَجِ، قَالَ قَالَ أَبُو هُرَيْرَةَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم " لاَ تَقُومُ السَّاعَةُ حَتَّى تُقَاتِلُوا التُّرْكَ صِغَارَ الأَعْيُنِ، حُمْرَ الْوُجُوهِ، ذُلْفَ الأُنُوفِ، كَأَنَّ وُجُوهَهُمُ الْمَجَانُّ الْمُطَرَّقَةُ، وَلاَ تَقُومُ السَّاعَةُ حَتَّى تُقَاتِلُوا قَوْمًا نِعَالُهُمُ الشَّعَرُ ".)[515][516]

A Hadith is also found in Sunan Nasai:

It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: "The Hour will not begin until the Muslims fight the Turks, a people with faces like hammered shields who wear clothes made of hair and shoes made of hair." (أَخْبَرَنَا قُتَيْبَةُ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا يَعْقُوبُ، عَنْ سُهَيْلٍ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ " لاَ تَقُومُ السَّاعَةُ حَتَّى يُقَاتِلَ الْمُسْلِمُونَ التُّرْكَ قَوْمًا وُجُوهُهُمْ كَالْمَجَانِّ الْمُطَرَّقَةِ يَلْبَسُونَ الشَّعَرَ وَيَمْشُونَ فِي الشَّعَرِ " .)[517]

Abu Dawud

The last hour will not come before the Muslims fight with the Turks, a people whose faces look as if they were shields covered with skin, and who will wear sandals of hair. (حَدَّثَنَا قُتَيْبَةُ، حَدَّثَنَا يَعْقُوبُ، - يَعْنِي الإِسْكَنْدَرَانِيَّ - عَنْ سُهَيْلٍ، - يَعْنِي ابْنَ أَبِي صَالِحٍ - عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ " لاَ تَقُومُ السَّاعَةُ حَتَّى يُقَاتِلَ الْمُسْلِمُونَ التُّرْكَ قَوْمًا وُجُوهُهُمْ كَالْمَجَانِّ الْمُطْرَقَةِ يَلْبَسُونَ الشَّعْرَ " .)[518]

In 2013 Islam Awazi released footage of Uyghur TIP members fighting against the Afghan National Army,[519] a video of fighters training in eastern Afghanistan,[520] one showing TIP members ambushing a bomb disposal unit in Afghanistan which was unarmed,[521] another showing one of their members being knocked over by the SPG-9 he was firing, accompanied by the phrase Inna Lillahi wa inna ilaihi raji'un in Arabic.[522]

Islam Awazi released photos of a Turkistan Islamic Party training camp,[523] Uyghur Turkistan Islamic Party fighters in Syria,[524] showing a Uyghur media team with their camera and laptop in Syria,[525] showing Burqa clad women being militarily trained by the Turkistan Islamic Party with guns and RPGs,[526][527][528][529] camps training children for Jihad are being run by the Turkistan Islamic Party in Syria,[530] photos of the child military training camps in Syria, holding AK-47s and shahada headbands in the Afpak (Afghanistan-Pakistan region), training with the adults, labeling the children as "little mujahideen",[531][532][533][534][535][536][537][538] pictures of Uyghur girls wearing Hijab and posing with guns,[539][540][541] Uyghur children in Idlib, Syria, with AK-47s, reading Qurans, and Burqa clad women praying.[542] The child soldiers were also shown engaging in religious studies.[543]

The village of Az-Zanbaqi (الزنبقي) in Jisr al-Shughur's countryside has become a base for a massive number of Uyghur Turkistan Islamic Party militants and their families in Syria, estimated at around 3,500, military camps in the area are training hundreds of children from these families; Hezbollah media, Iranian media and Syrian government media accused Turkish intelligence of being involved in transporting these Uyghurs via Turkey to Syria, with the aim of using them first in Syria to help Jabhat Al-Nusra and gain combat experience fighting against the Syrian Army before sending them back to Xinjiang to fight against China if they manage to survive.[544][545][546][547][548][549][550][551][552][553]

ISISEdit

The terrorist organization Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant released a video featuring an 80 year old Uyghur man who came to join ISIS in Syria along with his grandchildren, wife, and daughter after he was inspired by his son who died in combat in Syria. The video featured Uyghur children singing about martyrdom and a 10 year old Uyghur child threatening China, saying : "O Chinese kuffar (non-believers), know that we are preparing in the land of the khilafah (caliphate) and we will come to you and raise this flag in Turkestan with the permission of Allah."[554][555][556][557][558] The old Uyghur man said "'I made hijrah accompanied by my four grandsons, my daughter and my wife".[559][560][561]

Turkish passports were used by Uyghurs who were seeking to contact Mujahidin Indonesia Timur, a pro-ISIS organization in Sulawesi in Indonesia.[562]

The Turkish run English language BGNNews news agency reported that the Turkish Meydan newspaper discovered that Uyghur fighters joining ISIL were being helped by businessman Nurali T., who led a Zeytinburnu district based network in Istanbul, which produced counterfeit Turkish passports numbering up to 100,000 to give to Uyghurs from China and help them go to Turkey form where they would enter Iraq and Syria to join ISIL, Uyghurs from China travel to Malaysia via Cambodia and Thailand and then travel onto Turkey, since a visa is not needed for travel between Turkey and Malaysia, then staying at locations in Istanbul, and then going to Iraq and Syria by traveling to southeastern Turkey, the information was revealed by AG who participates in the network, he noted that even though Turkish authorities are able to detect the fake passports they do not deport the Uyghurs and allow them into Turkey, AG said that: "Turkey has secret dealings with the Uighurs. The authorities first confiscate the passports but then release the individuals."[563]

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

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ReferencesEdit