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China: Demand release of seriously ill Uighur: Memet Eli Rozi

Amnesty International Urgent Action UA: 66/11 Index: ASA 17/011/2011 | China Date: 10 March 2011


Memet Eli Rozi, an ethnic Uighur, is said to be seriously ill in prison in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR) in China. He has been held in detention since March 2010, without charge or trial.

Memet Eli Rozi has requested three times to have three metal plates that were inserted into his arm in 2009 following a traffic accident to be removed. The plates should apparently have been removed in February 2010. His wife visited the detention centre on 28 February, but was not allowed to see him. She told Radio Free Asia that detention centre staff confirmed to her during the visit that he has made these requests and that the requests have been denied. They also confirmed that his arm is now badly infected, and he is seriously ill.

According to an interview with staff at the detention centre by Radio Free Asia, “Memet Eli Rozi has not been able to sleep for two weeks.”

Memet Eli Rozi fled China in late 2009. He was in a group of 22 ethnic Uighurs from China who were seeking asylum in Cambodia in December 2009. The Cambodian authorities forcibly repatriated 20 of them on 19 December 2009. Memet Eli Rozi escaped to Laos where his wife and their five children joined him from China. However, they were caught by the Laotian police who deported them back to China in March 2010. Ever since, Memet Eli Rozi has been in custody but he has not been charged, tried or convicted. He is currently held in a detention centre in Kashgar (in Chinese: Kashi) in the XUAR.

In December 2009, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that the Uighurs who had escaped China were under investigation for suspected criminal activities. It is thought that they fled China as they feared persecution for involvement in the July 2009 unrest in Urumqi, the capital of XUAR and other parts of the region.

PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in English, Chinese or your own language: urging them to ensure that Memet Eli Rozi has immediate access to any medical treatment he requires; urging the Chinese authorities to release Memet Eli Rozi immediately and unconditionally unless he is charged with an internationally recognizable criminal offence;


Chairman of the XUAR People's Government
Nur BEKRI Zhuxi
Xinjiang Weiwuer Zizhiqu Renmin Zhengfu Bangongting
2 Zhongshanlu, Urumqi 830041
Xinjiang Weiwuer Zizhiqu
People's Republic of China
Fax: +86 991 2817567 or 2803621
Salutation: Dear Chairman

Secretary of the Central Politics and Law Commission of People’s Republic of China
Zhou Yongkang Shuji
Zhongyang Zhengfa Weiyuanhui
9 Xihuangchenggenbeijie
Beijingshi 100032
People's Republic of China
Salutation: Dear Secretary

Minister of State Security of the People's Republic of China
GEN Huichang Buzhang
Guojia Anquanbu
14 Dongchang’anjie
Beijingshi 100741
People's Republic of China
Salutation: Your Excellency

Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above date.




Most of the 22 ethnic Uighur asylum-seekers who were forcibly repatriated to China from Cambodia in December 2009, had left the XUAR after the riots of July 2009, fearing persecution by the Chinese authorities. The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) was in the process of reviewing their applications for refugee status in Phnom Penh, the capital of the country, when the Cambodian government succumbed to pressure from China to deport them. On 19 December 2009, 20 of them, including two children, were taken to a military airport where they were put on a plane back to China. At the time, many governments and international organizations condemned the Chinese and Cambodian governments for the forcible repatriation. They feared that the group risked serious human rights violations in China, and that returning them was therefore a breach by Cambodia of the international legal rule of non-refoulement, which binds all states.

Memet Eli Rozi managed to flee from Cambodia to Laos. One other person who was not forcibly repatriated to China is in a third country. International observers including Amnesty International have no information about the status and current whereabouts of the 20 who were forcibly repatriated to China.

According to Gulbahar Sadiq. Memet Eli Rozi’s wife, they were deported to China on the day of their arrival to Laos. They were first held for 32 days in Mengla county in Yunnan province, southern China, next to the border with Laos. Gulbahar Sadiq shared a room with her children whilst Memet Eli Rozi was kept separately. They were interrogated by police from the XUAR. After 32 days, Gulbahar and their children were sent to Ghulja in the XUAR where the family used to live. She later learned that her husband had been sent to Kashgar.

Memet Eli Rozi had previously served a three-year prison sentence for "illegal religious activity".

UA: 66/11 Index: ASA 17/011/2011 Issue Date: 10 March 2011

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