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Will China Use Today’s Summit With Arab Leaders to Promote Its Policies in Xinjiang?

TWEET TRANSLATION: "Ahead of the upcoming opening of the ninth ministerial meeting of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum, I am pleased to hand over the protective supplies that the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs presents to the General Secretariat of the League of Arab States. Now, the Chinese and Arab sides fought the joint battle against the virus with solidarity and cooperation."

Arab and Chinese leaders will meet today via video conference to take part in the 9th Ministerial China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, a similar grouping to that of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). While Chinese support for Arab and Gulf States’ efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 is likely to top the agenda, there are indications that Beijing may take advantage of the summit to promote its controversial policies in Xinjiang where hundreds of thousands of Uyghur Muslims have been forcibly interned.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Saturday held separate phone calls with Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi and Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud where he expressly thanked the two for supporting “China’s core interests, especially for China’s principled stand and legitimate rights and interests on internal affairs such as Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Xinjiang.”

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