Written by Martyna Kokotkiewicz
Abdurehim Gheni is an Uyghur activist currently living in the Netherlands. As many other Uyghurs in the world he has not managed to contact many of his relatives for years. In his case it is as much as 19 people. As it comes to several of them, he does not even know if they are alive or not.
Abdurehim has been doing everything possible to obtain information about his missing relatives. Regular one-man protests on the Dam Square in the Netherlands, letters to the authorities and many other actions have recently brought some results, not very positive though.
First of all, some weeks ago he managed to make a phone call with his brother. The call was definitely arranged by the Chinese authorities as Abdurehim was assured that everything is perfectly all right in the homeland, that it would be much better if he stopped his anti-China activities and, what seems the most important in here, he was told that unfortunately it was impossible (for disturbingly vague reasons) to talk to other famile members.
In the recent days the situation has got even worse. According to the information Abdurehim Gheni obtained through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs some of his relatives have got prison sentences: two of his bothers 16 and 6 years of prison respectively,one of his niece being sentenced to 4 years. There have been similar cases in the family of Abdurehim’s wife too (sentences of 16 and three years).
One becomes speechless when taking into consideration that those people’s only „crime” is being an Uyghur and having relatives abroad. The fact that Abdurehim is not alone in his fight for justice is obvious and clear for those involved in it and shall also be clear for the Chinese authorities. The people who have not seen or even talked to their loved ones for years will not give up until the response has come. If the response is similar to the one Abdurehim has got, all possible steps will be taken to bring the innocent people back.